SITA, a specialist developer of aviation IT, has signed an agreement with Oracle to develop a new system in the highly competitive flight reservations market.

Reservation systems typically store and process data on customers and flights, and interact with the IT used by travel agents, but the new system will attempt to offer more flexible functions in one place.

Under the fifteen year agreement, both parties have vowed to create a flexible, service oriented architecture for flight reservations, which they said would be the “next generation” of reservation software. The systems will offer reservations, inventory, ticketing and departure control modules.

Four hundred software developers will work on the new software.

Francesco Violante, chief executive at SITA, said the agreement was a “major milestone in the development of our ... passenger management portfolio”. SITA sells to 138 airlines.

Next month, SITA will launch Customer Journey, a passenger management module that will provide real-time access to airline bookings for business intelligence applications. This was co-developed with Oracle.