Christchurch Airport's Financial Systems Ready For Olympic Take-Off
13 September 1999 - Christchurch International Airport Limited (CIAL) has gone live with its new SunSystems financial
management software from Olympic Software Ltd.
The state-of-the-art software system was commissioned as part of Christchurch International Airport's long term
strategy of continuous improvement - especially in the area of information services.
Designed and implemented to facilitate activity-based reporting within the airport operation, SunSystems is now the
central repository of financial information for all divisions of the Company, including the world famous Antarctic
Visitor Centre, the Travel and Information Centre and Maintenance Operation. Each has its own business information
system which reports to the central SunSystem.
According to CIAL's development accountant Andrew Souness, a key requirement of the system was to handle the diverse
range of activities managed by the company. CIAL owns the terminals, runways, the Rescue Fire Operation and buildings
housing 130 lessees. These include airlines, banks, retail shops, fuel companies, Police, aviation workshops,
Immigration, MAF, engineering facilities, Antarctic New Zealand, the National Science Foundation and a number of
"One of the reasons SunSystem was chosen was because of the ability to attach codes to each transaction. It accepts
information from various specialised systems, and collates and disseminates information in a number of ways for
management's use," he said.
Also project manager for the new installation, Mr Souness explains that with so many sources of data it's extremely
useful to be able to extract detailed information. "For example if someone does some work on a runway we can find out
what they did, what costs were incurred and the nature of the expense," he said. "That's a real strength in a management
Not surprisingly, CIAL finds another major attribute of the SunSystem is its speed compared with the 11-year-old system
it replaced. Andrew Souness gives an example. "We were asked to present financial statements for 1998 and 1999 in a
different format from that which we normally use," he said. "The 1998 figures were still on the old system and it took
three weeks of manual work to complete the task. With the 1999 figures on the new SunSystem, the work was finished in
CIAL also asked Olympic to supply two additional modules to the base SunSystems solution for billing and cash
management. In response, Olympic Software developed and implemented an airline billing system, which charges airlines
for using CIAL facilities, plus a cash management system which links the SunSystem to an external banking system
supplied by CIAL's bankers.
Andrew Souness said Olympic Software was selected as their supplier because they had a track record of successfully
delivering mission critical software - and that he could see a long-term partnership developing between the two
organisations. "SunSystems provides best of breed financial management information, including Year 2000 compliance, high
functionality, excellent reporting and open integration. Combined with the high level of support we receive from Olympic
Software, it has proved to be a winning combination," he said.