MIAMI — Farelogix is launching NDC-Xpress, a technology solution that enables airlines to implement IATA’s New Distribution Capability (NDC).
Building on the core technologies of the flagship FLX Airline Commerce Gateway, NDC-Xpress delivers airline-controlled merchandising, pricing and API distribution in a SaaS model, with implementation delivered in less than six months using the latest NDC schemas (Version 1.1).
“The entire objective around NDC, and the driver of supporting technologies such as NDC Xpress, is to provide an efficient way for the indirect channel (travel agencies, GDS, corporations, OTAs) to have access to and transact new and differentiated airline content (i.e. merchandising of a la carte items; premium seats; branded fares; and more),” a Farelogix spokesperson told Travelweek. “This has not proven possible using legacy connections between airlines and GDS; NDC provides a standardized way for this to happen. As such NDC is a win for all constituents – airlines, agencies, GDSs and other intermediaries, and travellers – as it delivers more choices, products and dynamic selling capabilities across the indirect channel.”
NDC-Xpress enables airlines to immediately begin generating new revenue streams from the sale of value-added services in the agency channel. In addition, significant cost savings may be realized through the delivery of content across multiple indirect channel outlets (i.e., GDSs and other third party aggregators) via a single, standardized XML API inclusive of a common and supported implementation structure.
“The focus of NDC-Xpress is speed to market for the long overdue delivery of airline ancillaries, merchandising, rich content, and value-added services in the agency channel,” said Jim Davidson, President and CEO at Farelogix. “With the final approval of IATA’s Resolution 787 (NDC) by the US Department of Transportation and the competitive push for airlines to offer dynamic and differentiated content across channels – beyond airline.com – the timing could not be better for Farelogix to deliver a solution that brings NDC to life, quickly and to the benefit of all parties.”
“NDC Solution providers, such as Farelogix, will play an essential role in the growth and marketplace adoption of NDC,” said Aleks Popovich, IATA Senior Vice President of Financial and Distribution Services. “The introduction of NDC-Xpress, using proven technologies adapted for the latest version of the NDC standard, is evidence of the flexibility and speed to market an open standard such as NDC makes possible.”
NDC-Xpress entrusts airlines with the power to make their own offers to compete for customers by giving them control over their own shopping and merchandising engines, as well as their own standardized XML API to deliver rich content and dynamic offers to the travel agency channel. An NDC-Xpress implementation consists of three straightforward steps: (1) Farelogix establishes a normalized connection to the airline host system (PSS); (2) the airline configures its pricing and merchandising engines to define product/service offers and corresponding business rules; and (3) the airline distributes its differentiated content to travel sellers via its new NDC XML API.
Flexibility is another key attribute of NDC-Xpress, enabling the airline to choose the pace and scope of its NDC project. “We’re seeing a range of NDC engagements, depending on the carrier priority and vision,” said Davidson. “Some are ready for the full NDC-Xpress, which delivers comprehensive shopping, booking, order management, and fulfillment capability in a standardized XML API. Others just want to start with a focus on the shop process, in which a simpler ‘NDC Shop-Xpress’ implementation makes sense. The point is to get started quickly and use a technology platform that will evolve with the airline’s NDC and merchandising vision.”
The Farelogix/Open AXIS Group schema was chosen by IATA as the baseline for its NDC XML. Some 16 airlines are already integrated with XML connectivity and connections to nine PSS providers.