Thursday, 30 May 2019

FirstGroup Plans Sale Of UK Bus Division

The FirstGroup, one of the largest British transport companies, is set to turn its back on the UK by separating its bus division and possibly withdrawing from UK rail operations, following pressure from major shareholders.

The Aberdeen-based group has announced it will concentrate on activities in the United States even though it plans to sell off the famous Greyhound coach line which made a £98 million pretax loss.

The company says that its main market would be North America, where its school bus operations (First Student and First Transit) provided 60% of operating profits.

The activist investor Coast Capital, the largest single shareholder with a 10% holding, has been pushing for a separation of the US and UK businesses and to replace the board, having declared First’s strategy as “extraordinarily destructive of capital”.

First Bus says on its website
'Please be assured that as this process unfolds, we will continue to operate our services as usual, working closely with our local authority partners and demonstrating our commitment to our customers through the service we offer them.'

Roy

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