ASX-listed developer World.Net Services has won a contract to provide a destination management system for the tourist organisation of Flanders in Belgium, a deal which the company hopes will open the door to other opportunities within the European market.
The Sydney-based firm, which specialises in providing e-business solutions for the tourism industry, will start by building a Web site, which is due to go live in January.
It will also be responsible for delivering real-time online booking facilities, secure payment processing, enhanced content management and advanced reporting and analysis tools. The whole system will be operational before the end of next year.
Ernst van Oeveren, World.Net Services CEO, believes the contract will provide the leverage for the company to establish itself in the European market.
"The contract is worth well in excess of $1 million but, more importantly, it's our first major breakthrough in the mainland European market, which we have been chipping away at during the past 12 months.
"We have had discussions with other tourism organisations in Holland, Denmark, Spain and France, but now we are in a position to get one through to the delivery phase and other opportunities will grow from that," explained van Oeveren.
"Europe is the main focus of our business development during the next year, with the US as a target within a couple of years, because they are much bigger economies than Australia and have not slowed down to the same extent," he added.
The Flanders project is very similar to one World.Net carried out for the Wales Tourist Board earlier this year. Both systems provide the tools needed for members to participate in electronic distribution.
World.Net currently has a design team doing some preliminary work for another potential European client.