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East Anglia: ‘Solid’ trading for Anglian Bus, Chambers and Hedingham owner Go-Ahead

PUBLISHED: 12:31 01 May 2014 | UPDATED: 14:21 01 May 2014

David Brown, chief executive at Go-Ahead

David Brown, chief executive at Go-Ahead

© Guy Bell

Bus and train operator Go-Ahead today reported “solid” trading for the first nine months of its financial year.

Revenue from the group’s deregulated bus services, which include the Anglian Bus, Chambers, Hedingham and Konectbus fleets in Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk, was 3.5% up in the period to March 29, and 4% higher stripping out the effect of the Olympics in 2012.

Go-Ahead said the rise had been driven by both higher passenger numbers and increased route mileage, with commercial and concessionary travel both showing growth.

The group’s regulated bus services in London saw revenues grew by 6% (or 8% excluding the Olympics), helped by an increase in rail replacement work.

And its Southern, Southeastern and London Midland rail franchises recorded revenue growth of 7%, 4.5% and 8% respectively (7.5%, 6% and 9% excluding the Olympics), although the group cautioned that growth on London Midland was slowing as a result of increased competition of the West Coast Main Line.

“Overall, trading inboth our bus and rail businesses in the year to date has been solid and we remain confident that we will deliver a full year result in line with our expectations,” Go-Ahead said in a trading update.

Group chief executive David Brown added: “I am pleased with the overall performance of both our bus and rail businesses and our expectations for the full year remain unchanged.

“We continue to make good progress in our bus division and are on course to achieve our operating profit target of £100m by 2015-16.

“Our focus remains on achieving cost efficiencies in all areas of the business and driving revenue growth through our high quality operations. During the period we welcomed the results of the independent statutory watchdog Passenger Focus’ national customer satisfaction survey in which Go North East achieved 90% satisfaction.

“In our rail division overall underlying trading remains in line with our expectations. We await the outcome of the DfT’s Thameslink franchise competition and our bid team continues to work on upcoming opportunities.”

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