HS2

16.06.16

FirstGroup to partner with MTR in South Western bid against Stagecoach

MTR has announced that it will enter a joint venture with FirstGroup for the South Western franchise.

MTR/ FirstGroup will compete against Stagecoach, which currently operates the franchise via South West Trains, after Stagecoach failed to secure a direct award of the franchise beyond February 2017.

The Hong Kong-based MTR is the first owner of the Crossrail concession, although it lost the London Overground franchise to Arriva in March.

Jeremy Long, MTR’s CEO for Europe, said South Western was “a complex mix of shorter and longer distance services.”

He said MTR could bring experience of operating commuter rail franchises in both the UK and Sweden, compared to FirstGroup’s track record of running longer distance services.

Long also argued that MTR could also bring “particular insight and expertise” to running integrated railway, including the areas of the South Western franchise jointly operated with Network Rail, such as the Waterloo Integrated Control Centre.

(Image c. Alvey and Towers)

 

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Comments

Andrew Gwilt   17/06/2016 at 11:34

So MTR and First Group have teamed up to bid to take over the South Western Rail Franchise whilst First Group, National Express and Abellio are bidding to take over the Anglia Rail Franchise as Abellio Greater Anglia wont be who they are if First Group or National Express wins the franchise for Eastern England in October this year.

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