New interoperability benefits as European railway landscape is transformed by EU liberalisation measures and the introduction of telematic interoperability legislation (TAF/TAP TSI)
Utrecht/Basel 20 April 2015 – Hit Rail b.v. and Raildata, two of Europe’s leading railway organisations in the promotion of interoperability and cooperation between railways across borders, have signed a new agreement that will see them work more closely together to promote existing services and combine their services to offer enhanced benefits to their users.
The agreement is in response to the ongoing transformation in the European railway community with railway liberalisation which has led to the entrance into the market of new smaller operators with fewer IT applications. It also responds to the introduction of EU Regulations requiring all EU railway undertakings to communicate using standard messages and a common interface.
The agreement, signed initially for two years with automatic ongoing one-year renewals, will see both organisations promoting each other’s services as being complementary and building a strategy of support and cooperation to provide enhanced services through a combined offering. Both parties will seek to provide services to the European railway community whereby Raildata concentrates on services to the freight community and Hit Rail aims to connect railway players together and both to provide interoperability services.
The cooperation agreement will see Hit Rail managing the connections of Raildata’s existing members, mainly freight railway undertakings, and being the recommended option for new member’s network connections. Hit Rail will offer Raildata members a ‘built-in’ link to Hit Rail’s path request app provided they use a Hit Rail Hermes VPN connection. The parties will also work jointly on the strategy for migration of the train composition message (known as H30) to the new version.
Both organisations will recommend that their customers use each others’ services, and have agreed to hold an annual joint meeting to review the cooperation and to also plan future cooperation.
Francis Bedel, Raildata General Assembly Chairman, said: “This is an important step forward for our two organisations and the cooperation will allow us to improve the amount of wagon data available and provide member railway undertakings with easier connectivity and standard connections. It will also help us to increase our IT expertise, specifically in new technologies. For both organisations it is expected to help us increase our customer base as our combined services provide benefits for users. We are particularly pleased to be able to address new customers for ISR as Hit Rail has good contacts with railway companies in Eastern Europe.”
On behalf of Hit Rail, Antonio Lopez, Managing Director of Hit Rail, welcomed the agreement with Raildata, saying: “Working with Raildata will allow us to increase our data volumes and also widen the scope of our services to include many of the organisation’s customers, increasing the number of organisations that are interconnected. This will give added benefits to everyone and our combined offering gives greater support for railway operators in the areas of TSI – RU-IM and RU-RU for passenger services. This will certainly lead to increased customer satisfaction.”