Kingfisher to Upgrade its IT Infrastructure

by Sonal Desai    Jan 02, 2007

In lieu with its plans to go international by starting flights to the US and UK, Kingfisher Airlines Limited (KAL) has tied up with Tata Indicom for one more leased line and virtual private network to ensure smooth transfer of data to its shared servers hosted by Sabre in Tulsa, US. Both will be functional from end January, says Samarendra Mohanty, manager - IT infrastructure, Airports, KAL.

KAL’s data centers are linked to racks at Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City (DAKS) in Navi Mumbai. Reliance and BSNL transfer the data from these racks to Sabre server over leased lines or internet through the international protocol leased circuits (IPLC) via SITA SC. Sabre stores data for KAL on its servers, and also acts as its disaster recovery platform. The two companies use the Multi Protocol Label Switches for data transfer from the airports to the central office in Mumbai.

Mohanty explains that the additional leased line and VPN will balance load, scale operations of the data center, enable faster work and save bandwidth. “We are investing now with an eye on the future. When we expand and the passenger flow increases, the investment will come in handy. Our day to day functioning will not get affected due to want of infrastructure.”

KAL is planning to switch over to VoIP in the next two months. Elaborates Mohanty, “We will first install the VoIP facility at major airports. The heads of all departments will be also be connected. The entire installation will be completed in phases.”

The company will install direct televisions on the lines of DTH TVs, and internet connections on flights. While the TVs will be installed by the end of first quarter, KAL is in talks with Connexsion for internet connections. The two installations will be done via VSAT.

The airline is also in the process of implementing SAP across its offices. While the installation is in process, the procedure is at a user acceptance test level. Departments such as finance, payroll, human resources and material management will be covered under the first phase. Phase two will cover the other departments. The company uses Oracle for data center. However, it has no plans to replace Oracle with SAP, Mohanty confirms. SAP implementation will take a year to complete.

KAL will install RFID tags at the airports to track cargo movement. It is in talks with Singapore-based Mint for the project. “However, these tags will be installed only once KAL’s international flights commence,” he adds.