The Passenger Rail Association of South Africa (Prasa) is revamping its ICT infrastructure and enhancing its existing railway network. 
The improvements will ease the burden on many commuters following the introduction by Prasa of its Rolling Stock Fleet Renewal Programme, unveiled by the National Department of Transport in 2012, to replace old trains that are in a state of disrepair.
In an effort to make itself a best-run business, Prasa started implementing a range of SAP passenger travel solutions that runs on a single technology platform using a consolidated technical infrastructure for railways and bus services functions such as finance, logistics, resources and maintenance.
The benefits for Prasa include improved and enhanced logistics management through automation of key business operations and functions including asset management, supply chain management, human resources and compliance; resulting in a more integrated, transparent, flexible and actionable view of all business operations.
South African commuters will benefit from a transport system that is built on an excellent infrastructure – one that is on time, reliable and safer to use. The objective is to ensures that the rail system operation remains up and running with fewer interruptions and an improved customer experience.
As part of this project, an estimated 7 224 new modern coaches are planned for production in South Africa over the next 20 years, promoting local manufacturing and creating an estimated 65 000 jobs in the country.
Building these trains will require a new generation of railway workers, both engineers and artisans, to help realise Prasa’s vision of becoming South Africa’s leading provider of world-class public transport by 2015.
“The population of most cities throughout the developing world is expected to grow to two billion by 2013. We are certain that the growth will also impact South Africa’s cities and as Prasa, we need to be prepared. Growing and prosperous economies require more modern and efficient railway transport systems to be effective and successful,” says Lucky Montana, Prasa group CEO.
“We embarked on this strategic roadmap with SAP because of its global footprint and ability to transform and enable organisations such as ours to become a best-run business,” he adds.
“SAP applauds Prasa’s decision to implement innovative IT solutions used by leading rail networks across the globe,” says Pfungwa Serima, CEO of SAP Africa.
“We believe that this competitive edge will enable Prasa to significantly enhance its service delivery, better manage resources and assets and create real value for their commuters. SAP remains committed to supporting Prasa in ensuring that the investment adds value and is optimally deployed throughout the organisation.”