SilverRail raises $40 million to expand rail ticketing technology

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A Woburn software firm has raised $40 million to expand its technology that enables travelers to book train tickets the same way for every rail line, as can already be done for air travel.

The company, SilverRail Technologies Inc., is aiming to follow the lead of Cambridge-based ITA Software, which developed a standardized system for booking plane tickets that is used by airlines and travel services. ITA was acquired by Google Inc. for $700 million in 2011.

“We’re trying to make rail as easy to buy as is air,” said SilverRail’s chief executive, Aaron Gowell.

The platform includes both search and transaction technologies and initially targeted travel agencies. SilverRail eventually expanded into serving some of the rail carriers themselves, Gowell said.

“It was the exact same way at ITA — they started off by powering third-party travel agencies, and the airlines then adopted ITA,” he said

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