Getting Integrated Ticketing Right


The dangers of getting integrated ticketing in the hands of the wrong company are re-enforced with a weekend  story in a West Australian paper about the sorry saga of a once online company darling whose plans for integrated ticketing in Australia came to none.

The company, then called ERG, won projects to integrate public transport ticketing systems in Sydney, Melbourne and as far afield as Rome, Beijing and San Francisco. But it never managed to reconcile its skinny balance sheet with the level of funding needed to undertake projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars. When projects were delayed, ERG was left holding costs it could not afford. The NSW Government cancelled ERG’s integrated ticketing project last year - leaving the company with an $89 million loss on the project but the newspaper report tells an intriguing story of who ended up out of pocket.

The latest word on our streets is that our long awaited integrated ticketing will be announced within the next fortnight – and French company Thales will be confirmed.

Fingers crossed.




  1. Cambennett says:

    I hope you are right about the announcement. This project is - with electrification of the rail network - one of the most important PT projects in the citie’s history. Having smartcard integerated ticketing will drag us into the 21st century. Lets hope it’s done properly.

  2. zookie says:

    Another take on the ERG fiasco is at this link. Note the connection to Infratil:

  3. Jon C says:

    Cambennett, we can’t relax until its 100% done and dusted.

  4. Jeremy Harris says:

    Anything else, is outright corruption… Hopefully they know the stink that’ll be raised if they go with Infatil…

  5. jarbury says:

    I got an email from ARTA saying that it’s definitely Thales. NZTA have approved funding.


  6. Frustrated says:

    Jon, thanks for giving us the scoop here earlier on this aktrain blog. You were way ahead of the news sites and the other blogs well done.
    You obviously knew more than you were letting on to be so sure.
    And I was very excited.


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