In June 2006, BAA was bought by a consortium led by Ferrovial, the Spanish construction company, and in August officially delisted from the London Stock Exchange. BAA is one of the world’s leading airport companies owning seven UK airports and having management contracts at a number of international airports.
BAA is currently replacing the telecommunications backbone across its seven airports ahead of a planned transition to IP telephony in 2009. The airports operator is planning to refresh its voice infrastructure and replace outdated legacy systems to improve voice and data delivery and cut costs. The organisation anticipates that the transition to IP telephony will provide an opportunity to improve data transfer as well as generating cost savings.
In a separate initiative, BAA is planning to install real-time information systems to reduce queues at security checkpoints. This is part of the operator’s Delivering Excellence programme, which is intended to improve customer service, management and efficiency. The technology will register when a passenger arrives and determine if actual queuing and processing time exceeds airport targets. BAA will then export the data in a spreadsheet-compatible format to measure overall performance using comparative figures on airports, terminals, queue lanes and date.
BAA is also heavily occupied with installing the £250 million IT systems for Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 5 (T5) project, which is on track for the planned opening at 4am on 30 March 2008.