Fujitsu has entered into a collaboration with IT and engineering technology group Höft & Wessel to develop ticketing, parking and mobile applications for the rail industry.
Fujitsu said that the agreement is part of the company's broader strategy to diversify its rail offering and deliver enhanced multichannel ticketing vending machines (TVMs) for train operator companies (TOCs).
Höft & Wessel's Almex UK general manager Peter Aylward said: "We have selected Fujitsu as our collaboration partner due to its long-standing track-record in rail ticketing solutions. These new products are a direct response to customer feedback and reflect the changing patterns in the ways that rail passengers now choose to collect and purchase their tickets," Aylward said.
Under the agreement, Fujitsu and Höft & Wessel will develop rail settlement plan (RSP) pre-paid ticket-on-departure kiosks, and easily deployable and cost effective cashless TVMs. The ticket-on-departure kiosks will allow passengers to collect any tickets they have pre-ordered online. Fujitsu said the service improve queue management for passengers as the TOC can differentiate between collection and full purchase at the station.
Fujitsu head of rail in UK & Ireland Nick Chisnall said the company is determined to be at the heart of the changing rail technology landscape. "With several new franchises for the large TOCs on the horizon, this is an exciting time for us to demonstrate how innovative technologies that improve customer engagement can provide these companies with a critical competitive edge," Chisnall said.
The partnership deal follows Fujitsu's previous 2011 rail technology contract extension. The company developed a new enhanced ticketing system for Stagecoach, which in the future will enable TOCs to have technology platforms that will facilitate contactless card payments and full-motion video advertising.
The company also developed the MtoGo concept for Mersey Rail, which is built on its STAR ticketing system and transforms the traditional ticketing office into an in-station convenience store that allows passengers to pick up tickets alongside their groceries and newspapers.
Established in 1978, the Höft & Wessel Group delivers ticketing, parking and mobile applications in the UK and Germany.