The Association of Train-Operating Companies (ATOC) has outsourced the collection of more than £4.8bn in rail fares to Atos Origin in a £30m deal lasting 12 years.
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ATOC, which is responsible for most joint activities between train operators, expects the deal to save £20m by 2018.
The Rail Settlement Plan (RSP) is the part of ATOC with responsibility for the systems that distribute, retail and settle rail revenues.
RSP chief executive Antony Lain said, “The contract brings immediate benefits of cost savings, flexibility, auditability and reliability. The design is such that future changes in the retail environment through technology such as smartcards or mobile ticketing can be accommodated easily.”
The contract covers the system that settles every train fare bought for a journey in the UK. Revenue from tickets purchased over the internet, by telephone, in stations and on trains will be distributed to the train-operating companies by Atos Origin.