World-famous travel and leisure company Thomas Cook Group plc has signed a contract with Capgemini for the radical modernisation of a core IT system in the UK. The programme is designed to significantly increase Thomas Cook UK & Ireland’s efficiency and flexibility, and transform services to its millions of UK customers. By streamlining its IT, Thomas Cook also aims to boost its ability to satisfy evolving customer tastes and preferences, and increase its responsiveness to changes in the travel and leisure marketplace.

The Capgemini development will allow Thomas Cook UK & Ireland to replace a number of its existing IT systems by deploying new technology able to support the end-to-end management of all aspects of tour and travel management from booking through to delivery. A radically updated reservation and management system will enable Thomas Cook UK & Ireland to market and distribute both custom-designed and traditional package holidays via multiple channels including websites, call centres and travel agents. The IT development programme also aims to facilitate rapid integration with external IT systems from third party providers such as hotel groups, airlines and car hire companies.

Mark Foy, Programme Director at Thomas Cook Group plc, said: ‘People booking holidays need the freedom and flexibility that today’s choice of booking channels gives them, but they also appreciate the traditional values of service, security and expertise that Thomas Cook can provide. The new Capgemini developments will enable us to offer our customers the best of both worlds, marking an important new chapter in the ongoing development of the holiday industry.’

He added that there are further possibilities for collaboration between Thomas Cook Group plc and Capgemini in the future involving markets and customers in other parts of the Group including Continental Europe and the fast-growing markets for tourism in countries such as India and China.

The new partnership will drive the next phase of Thomas Cook’s GLOBE programme that was announced in 2006. The new project will focus on Thomas Cook Group plc’s activities in the UK market, its largest business segment.

Thomas Cook Group plc selected Capgemini as prime contractor for the project following a review of competitive proposals. It says that Capgemini was selected because of its attractive commercial proposition, its commitment to collaborative working and its leadership in ‘agile’ software development, a technique which enables rapid and iterative fine-tuning of IT systems to business needs as the development process proceeds. Other important factors were Capgemini’s ability to offer excellent quality and value through its Rightshore® delivery model, and its first-class references from existing clients.

The 70-strong Capgemini team of experts from the UK, Germany and India will be based at Thomas Cook’s offices in Peterborough and at Capgemini Accelerated Development Centres in Birmingham and Manchester, UK and Mumbai, India. The updated systems are expected to centre on largely custom-designed software but will also include an Oracle database and IBM Websphere components. As well as serving the holiday-making public, the systems will also be accessed by Thomas Cook UK & Ireland people in Thomas Cook head offices, stores and call centres. Capgemini is starting development work on the programme immediately. The first Release within the programme is scheduled for Q4 2010 with final completion within three years.

Ian Fairclough, Programme Director at Capgemini UK, said: ‘The Thomas Cook Group plc is a world-class name in travel and tourism and we are proud to be entrusted with this crucial project – one which, we believe, will transform the face of tourism and open up many exciting new opportunities for holiday-makers from the UK.’

Thomas Cook Group plc is one of the world’s leading leisure travel groups with sales of £8.8 billion, 22.3 million customers, 31,000 employees, a fleet of 93 aircraft and a network of over 3,400 owned and franchised travel stores and interests in 86 hotels and resort properties.


About Capgemini

Capgemini, one of the world’s foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing services, enables its clients to transform and perform through technologies. Capgemini provides its clients with insights and capabilities that boost their freedom to achieve superior results through a unique way of working, the Collaborative Business ExperienceTM. The Group relies on its global delivery model called Rightshore®, which aims to get the right balance of the best talent from multiple locations, working as one team to create and deliver the optimum solution for clients. Present in more than 30 countries, Capgemini reported 2009 global revenues of EUR 8.4 billion and employs 95,000 people worldwide

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Press contact:
Tom Barton
Capgemini UK plc
Tel.:+44 (0)870 238 2491 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              +44 (0)870 238 2491      end_of_the_skype_highlighting