National Express motors ahead
National Express Group PLC, which has released its interim management statement for the period from 1 January to 30 April, has revealed a strong start to the year, with total revenues up eleven per cent on a constant currency basis, including the benefit from acquisitions and the start of German rail operations in December of last year.
After adjusting for the new operations, revenue was up four per cent on an underlying basis.
Dean Finch, group chief executive, said: “I am pleased that we have carried our strong momentum from 2015, achieving growth in passenger numbers and an increase in revenues across all divisions.
“Our established businesses continue to grow, year-on-year, and our new businesses in Germany and Bahrain are already carrying millions of passengers, through a combination of innovation, partnership and customer service, underpinned by a relentless focus on operational excellence. We also believe this experience helps position us well for other emerging opportunities.”
Dean added: “It is these successes that convince us that our strategy of diversification into new markets in a measured way, when the conditions are right, remains the right one. We are building a business with a balanced risk profile and limited exposure to individual contracts. In North America, for example, over 90 per cent of our revenue comes from contracts we have held on average for more than 10 years and where we wish to retain these contracts, we have consistently secured a success rate in excess of 95 per cent..
“We will also continue to seek out long-term and capex-light opportunities which meet our strict financial criteria. We remain on track to meet our full year profit and cash flow expectations.”
The Group reported that its UK Bus division - which has corporate transport agreements with, Amazon, Jaguar Land Rover and Birmingham Airport - had commercial revenue growth of three per cent, while UK Coach reported four per cent underlying growth despite a reduction in passenger numbers immediately following the terrorist attacks in Brussels.