SITA



Well it doesn't surprise me to find the head offices for Societe Internationale de Telecommunications Aeronautiques (SITA) within one block of Geneva Airport. After all, it's thanks to this airline cooperative that airplanes fly. SITA is a telecommunications services cooperative created by the airlines to share information around the globe. Revenues in 2001 were $1.6 billion with 3,700 employees.

Headquarters is a blah-looking five-story concrete slab built in the 1960's. About 370 employees work here. The building is called "Alpha Business Center" and SITA has leased space on the first four floors since 1994. There's a SITA sign along with other company signs attached to the topside of the structure.

I meet with Thomas Frankl, Director-Corporate Communications, who says the reasons for SITA being in Geneva is location, location and tax benefits. Smoking isn't allowed in the offices, meeting rooms are named after famous people in aviation such as the Wright Brothers Room and, it's mere 300 meters to the nearest freeway.

Though it's an ugly box-like building, there's a large grassy inner courtyard for taking breaks. Any employee perks? SITA probably has one of the best employee perks I've come across: employees get from 50% to 90% off on tickets from just about every airline in the world.