Based at Dubai International Airport, Emirates Flight Catering employs more than 6,500 staff and provides catering and ancillary services to airlines operating at this busy regional hub. On average, Emirates Flight Catering delivers 125,000 to 150,000 meals per day that are served on 340 flights to more than 110 regular airline clients. The company operates a 602,778 square foot production facility, the largest of its kind in the world, in terms of volume throughput.
Emirates Flight Catering needed to ensure more efficient 24/7 operations in a very time-sensitive environment and achieve an operating uptime that exceeded 99% to ensure timely food and beverage delivery to airplanes. By upgrading from Oracle’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 8.10 to JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 9.0, the company achieved system stability beyond the requirements of the flight catering business—where meals must be ready four hours before the departure of each flight—and it reduced food cost variances from US$500,000 to US$100,000 per month, to realize a straight gain of $4.8 million per year.
Emirates Flight Catering recently won the 2011 Arab Technology Award for the “Best ERP Implementation in the Hospitality Sector” category. The company was chosen among 50 competing companies to receive this highly prestigious and competitive award because of the smooth handling and outstanding return on investment of its enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution implementation.
“We view Oracle as part of the extended team and not as just a vendor. The tight integration and hands on approach taken by Oracle ensured success after success. JD Edwards EnterpriseOne handled the difficult challenge of unit-of-measurement conversions, which could not be handled by any other ERP system,” said Arun Tewary, vice president, IT, and chief information officer, Emirates Flight Catering.
Emirates Flight Catering chose to employ a three-phased approach. In the first phase—a thorough overview and analysis of its existing hardware—Emirates Flight Catering decided to upgrade its disk space, central processing units, and system memory.
Phase two consisted of upgrading the existing JD Edwards EnterpriseOne system to version 9.0, carrying over all customizations that the company had implemented it its previous version. Now in the third phase—Business Process Validation—the company is identifying areas for improvement.