Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Go Ahead Group https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Go Ahead Group RSS feed en Sun, 21 Jul 2019 18:14:14 +0100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190718085838_14154406/ Thu, 18 Jul 2019 08:58:38 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190718085838_14154406/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190716082741_14150856/ Tue, 16 Jul 2019 08:27:41 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190716082741_14150856/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Block listing Interim Review ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190701102735_14131119/ Mon, 01 Jul 2019 10:27:35 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190701102735_14131119/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190701090001_14130871/ Mon, 01 Jul 2019 09:00:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190701090001_14130871/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190628172022_14129975/ Fri, 28 Jun 2019 17:20:22 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190628172022_14129975/ <![CDATA[News - Go Ahead poaches Eurostar chairman for top job ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/222925/go-ahead-poaches-eurostar-chairman-for-top-job-222925.html Go Ahead Group PLC (LON:GOG) has poached the non-executive chairman of Eurostar International for the same role at the UK transport operator.

Clare Hollingsworth will join Go Ahead as non-executive chairman after the annual general meeting on October 31, replacing Andrew Allner.

Allner is stepping down after six years as chairman and more than 10 years as a non-executive director of the group, which runs the Govia Thameslink and Southeastern rail franchises.

READ: Go-Ahead confirms extension to Southeastern franchise until November 10

Hollingsworth has been the non-executive chairman of Eurostar for nearly six years. She is also a non-executive director of UK Government Investments and Molnlycke AB, and senior independent director at The LTA. 

Previous roles included chief executive of Spire Healthcare and its predecessor business, BUPA Hospitals, and managing director of Caledonian Airways.

"I am delighted to be joining this successful transport business,” Hollingworth said.

“The Go Ahead board has evolved a clear strategy based on the core belief that generating value for investors happens when you meet the needs of the customers and communities you serve. The business is well positioned to deliver on its current commitments and look at future opportunities to grow."

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Thu, 27 Jun 2019 09:11:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/222925/go-ahead-poaches-eurostar-chairman-for-top-job-222925.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Appointment of Chairman ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190627070014_14126182/ Thu, 27 Jun 2019 07:00:14 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190627070014_14126182/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Total Voting Rights ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190618125053_14115331/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 12:50:53 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190618125053_14115331/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Holding(s) in Company ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190618124223_14115326/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 12:42:23 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190618124223_14115326/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190617163901_14113853/ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 16:39:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190617163901_14113853/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190614160301_14112120/ Fri, 14 Jun 2019 16:03:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190614160301_14112120/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead confirms extension to Southeastern franchise until November 10 ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/222057/go-ahead-confirms-extension-to-southeastern-franchise-until-november-10-222057.html Go-Ahead Group PLC (LON:GOG) has confirmed an extension to its current Southeastern rail franchise.

The FTSE 250 transport operator, which also runs the Govia Thameslink railway, said it would continue to operate services on the franchise until 10 November, as opposed to the original end date of 22 June, with an option to extend the period to 1 April 2020 to allow the UK government more time to review and choose a winner for the next franchise.

READ: Southeastern rail operator Go-Ahead on the front foot after well-received trading update

Over the newly extended period, Go-Ahead said it would introduce an improved compensation scheme as part of a suite of passenger-focused improvements.

The ‘Delay Repay 15’ scheme will mean passengers delayed by 15 minutes or more will receive money back for the inconvenience, a reduction from the current compensation limit with applies to delays of over 30 minutes.

“I don't want any of our passengers to be delayed, but if they are it's really important that we compensate them properly.  That's why I'm delighted to announce these improvements to Delay Repay, which will make a real difference for people who experience shorter delays of between 15 and 30 minutes", said David Statham, Southeastern's Managing Director.

"This extension gives us the opportunity to build on the customer improvements we've delivered over recent months, during which service punctuality has reached its highest levels in Southeastern's history”, he added.

Go-Ahead has operated the Southeastern franchise since 2006 as part of a joint venture (JV) with Keolis, a Franco-Québécois transport operator which owns 35% of the JV compared to Go-Ahead’s 65%.

In late-morning trading on Thursday, Go-Ahead shares were down 0.5% at 1,990p.

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Thu, 13 Jun 2019 11:20:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/222057/go-ahead-confirms-extension-to-southeastern-franchise-until-november-10-222057.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Southeastern Extension Confirmed ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190613093001_14109695/ Thu, 13 Jun 2019 09:30:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190613093001_14109695/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190610162302_14105427/ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 16:23:02 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190610162302_14105427/ <![CDATA[News - Southeastern rail operator Go-Ahead on the front foot after well-received trading update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/221613/southeastern-rail-operator-go-ahead-on-the-front-foot-after-well-received-trading-update-221613.html Transport operator Go-Ahead Group PLC (LON:GOG) shares jumped as it delivered revenue growth across most its divisions in the year to date.

In a trading update for the period from 1 July 2018 to 27 April 2019, the company posted a 4.0% rise in like-for-like revenue for the regional bus unit as passenger journeys increased 3.5%.

READ: Go-Ahead Group sees first half profit beat expectations as the train takes the strain

However, yields were lower due to campaigns targeted at younger passengers. The company said it has plans to improve yields while ensuring it continues to grow customer numbers and manage the cost base.

Operating profit in the regional bus business is expected to be flat in the second half compared to the year-ago period. Full year expectations for the business are broadly unchanged.

Go-Ahead raises expectations for London and international bus unit

The group's London and international bus unit saw like-for-like revenue dip 0.5% in the year to date as mileage fell 4.0% and peak vehicle requirement – the number of vehicles needed to operate the highest frequency service on a route – dropped 5.5% following the loss of contracts.

But Go-Ahead raised its expectations for the year after a “strong operational performance” in London, which has resulted in higher quality incentive contract income.

It said Singapore's operations also performed well and its first bus contract in Dublin has been successfully mobilised.

While mileage and peak vehicle requirements were lower, the group expects growth in both metrics next year as new contracts are introduced, including a second one in Dublin.

The rail division, which operates the Southeastern and Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) franchises, delivered a 5% increase in passenger revenue as journeys rose by 4% in the year to date.

However, the growth marked a slowdown as the previous year was boosted by London Bridge station's reopening in January 2018.

Go-Ahead still in talks for Southeastern contract extension 

Go-Ahead said it remains in talks with the Department for Transport (DfT) regarding an extension to its contract for the Southeastern franchise.

GTR is not expected to contribute to group profitability in the current financial year after a settlement reached with the DfT last December, as previously announced.

The company agreed to spend £15mln on passenger improvements to hold onto the GTR franchise after a botched timetabling roll-out in May 2018.

“Service levels at GTR continue to improve with punctuality for the month of April reaching 89.3%, a record level for the franchise, after nine consecutive months of year on year improvement,” said chief executive David Brown.

In Germany, two of five secured rail contracts will begin operations this weekend. The third contract is expected to start operations in December 2019.

Go-Ahead shares rose 9.2% to 2,058p in late morning trading. 

Jefferies hikes target price 

Jefferies reiterated a 'buy' rating and raised its target price for Go-Ahead to 2,290p from 2,260p. The broker also lifted its estimates for fiscal year 2019 earnings per share by 8%. 

"We reiterate our preference for Go-Ahead given its: attractive regional bus exposure, initiatives targeting sustainable regional bus volume growth, UK rail track record and performance and its London bus bidding cycle positioning," Jefferies said in a note to clients. 

"We think this update supports our thesis and we reiterate our 'buy' recommendation."

 -- Adds broker comment and share price --

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Thu, 06 Jun 2019 07:48:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/221613/southeastern-rail-operator-go-ahead-on-the-front-foot-after-well-received-trading-update-221613.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190606070005_14100428/ Thu, 06 Jun 2019 07:00:05 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190606070005_14100428/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Go-Ahead appoints Elodie Brian as CFO ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190605070006_14098716/ Wed, 05 Jun 2019 07:00:06 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190605070006_14098716/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190517145921_14078911/ Fri, 17 May 2019 14:59:21 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190517145921_14078911/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190514155620_14073797/ Tue, 14 May 2019 15:56:20 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190514155620_14073797/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190418150544_14046881/ Thu, 18 Apr 2019 15:05:44 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190418150544_14046881/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190415160101_14041752/ Mon, 15 Apr 2019 16:01:01 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190415160101_14041752/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead reverses as HSBC downgrades to ‘hold’ from ‘buy’ on valuation grounds in mixed sector review ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218236/go-ahead-reverses-as-hsbc-downgrades-to-hold-from-buy-on-valuation-grounds-in-mixed-sector-review-218236.html HSBC has cut its stance for Go-Ahead Group PLC (LON:GOG) to ‘hold’ from ‘buy’ on valuation grounds in a mixed review of the UK Bus and Rail sector.

The global bank still raised its target price for the FTSE 250-listed stock to 2,010p from 1,970p, with the shares currently trading at 1,877p, down 2% on Monday’s close.

READ: Go-Ahead Group sees first half profit beat expectations as the train takes the strain

In the note to clients, HSBC’s analysts pointed out that Go-Ahead shares have performed well but they can “no longer see a clear value case”. They also added, for Go-Ahead: “International expansion is interesting, but beware execution risks.”

Looking at the sector overall, the analysts noted that changes to IFRS 16 reporting will “optically change the sector’s debt profile and have a varying impact on earnings, depending on where operators are in a rail franchise’s life.”

They argue, however, that investors should not get too hung up on this - a focus on metrics used by ratings agencies suggests plenty of financial headroom - and they continue to think that cash is the best way of measuring an operator’s investment case.

Value opportunities becoming more limited

But, the analysts added, through this lens, value opportunities in the sector are becoming more limited.

They said: “If we strip cash generation down into rail/non-rail components, share prices look up with events, and all except National Express are starting to attribute some value to rail. Given the volatility in this sector, and the short-dated nature of some remaining rail franchises, that might be an issue.”

The analysts added: “Arguably it’s better to be growing internationally instead of bidding for new rail franchises, where it’s still not clear a lot of value can be added, and where management teams have been prone to overpay in the past, storing up problems for the future.”

They concluded: “While UK bus divisions seem over the worst of the downgrades, we shouldn’t expect much in the way of growth.”

Other transport players assessed

Among other stocks in the sector, the HSBC analysts think National Express PLC (LON:NEX) has “most obvious value”.

The analysts said: “We think the share price is more than justified from the existing businesses. Additional value should come from M&A.”

They reiterated a ‘buy’ rating and 475p target price on National Express shares which were trading at 401.40p, down 1%.

The analysts retained a ‘hold’ rating on Stagecoach with a reduced target price of 135p, down from 165p, as they said it “looks unduly dependent on the UK and on winning rail”. Stagecoach shares shed 3.6% at 132.30p.

But the analysts raised their target price for Firstgroup PLC (LON:FGP) to 90p from 80p, while keeping a ‘hold’ rating, as they think the stock “could be of greater interest in time”.

However, they added, “its poor track record means we are reluctant to attribute much value to the turnaround story yet.” Firstgroup shares rose 0.9% to 96p.

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Tue, 09 Apr 2019 12:52:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/218236/go-ahead-reverses-as-hsbc-downgrades-to-hold-from-buy-on-valuation-grounds-in-mixed-sector-review-218236.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190327105039_14017756/ Wed, 27 Mar 2019 10:50:39 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190327105039_14017756/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190319112551_14007598/ Tue, 19 Mar 2019 11:25:51 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190319112551_14007598/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190315115300_14004298/ Fri, 15 Mar 2019 11:53:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190315115300_14004298/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Rail regulator fines GTR £5m ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190314070007_14001510/ Thu, 14 Mar 2019 07:00:07 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190314070007_14001510/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead Group sees first half profit beat expectations as the train takes the strain ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/215041/go-ahead-group-sees-first-half-profit-beat-expectations-as-the-train-takes-the-strain-215041.html The company said its Bus operating profit pre-exceptional items of £46.9mln was slightly ahead of last year's number, while Rail operating profit at £17.6mln was also ahead of expectations, albeit lower than last year's £40.3mln due to the end of the London Midland franchise in December 2017.

David Brown, Go-Ahead's chief executive said: "Whilst overall rail profits fell due to the end of the London Midland franchise in December 2017 and a lower result at GTR (Govia Thameslink Railway), they were ahead of expectations. Southeastern delivered good financial performance, up on last year.”   On the outlook for the group, Brown added: "For the Group overall, our full year expectations have increased, principally due to rail. We expect free cash flow generation to be strong, resulting in a reduction in net debt, excluding restricted rail cash, at year end and supporting the payment of dividends that are in line with our policy.”   In a note to clients, Liberum analysts commented: “A better than expected H1 performance, but mainly driven by Rail so with limited implications for the long term and valuation.”   Liberum reiterated a ‘hold’ rating and 1,850p sum-of-the-parts based target price on Go-Ahead shares, which in early afternoon trading were up 3.4% at 1,980p.   Go-Ahead maintained its interim dividend at 30.17p per share. ]]>
Thu, 21 Feb 2019 12:01:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/215041/go-ahead-group-sees-first-half-profit-beat-expectations-as-the-train-takes-the-strain-215041.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Half Year Results ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190221070003_13976434/ Thu, 21 Feb 2019 07:00:03 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190221070003_13976434/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead to expand into Manchester with purchase of FirstGroup PLC bus depot ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/214871/go-ahead-to-expand-into-manchester-with-purchase-of-firstgroup-plc-bus-depot-214871.html Tue, 19 Feb 2019 09:28:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/214871/go-ahead-to-expand-into-manchester-with-purchase-of-firstgroup-plc-bus-depot-214871.html <![CDATA[RNS press release - Go-Ahead Agrees Terms To Buy Manchester Bus Depot ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190219070014_13973562/ Tue, 19 Feb 2019 07:00:14 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190219070014_13973562/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190214121617_13969847/ Thu, 14 Feb 2019 12:16:17 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190214121617_13969847/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190115153624_13935486/ Tue, 15 Jan 2019 15:36:24 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190115153624_13935486/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Block listing Interim Review ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190102090002_13920568/ Wed, 02 Jan 2019 09:00:02 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20190102090002_13920568/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181218163439_13908495/ Tue, 18 Dec 2018 16:34:39 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181218163439_13908495/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead Group bags first Australian contract with Sydney rail deal ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211235/go-ahead-group-bags-first-australian-contract-with-sydney-rail-deal-211235.html Go-Ahead Group (LON:GOG) has won its first contract in Australia after sealing a deal with Sydney for Transport to modernise the city's rail infrastructure.

The bus and rail group will, in partnership with Network Rail Consulting, replace existing signalling and train control systems with “modern, internationally-proven intelligent technology” that gets more trains on the tracks and increases the frequency of services for passengers of Sydney Trains.

READ: Go-Ahead Group awarded Bavarian rail contract

This deal is Go Ahead’s tenth international contract - a figure that has doubled over the last year. As well as its UK rail and bus operations, Go-Ahead currently operates in Ireland and Singapore and has won contracts in Norway and Germany.

“This is a project which will utilise Go-Ahead's skills in preparing for future transport needs and it is pleasing to see that there is international demand for UK expertise in implementing rail technology,” Go-Ahead’s CEO David Brown said in a statement.

“Having been involved in the UK's Digital Rail programme, Go-Ahead recognises the opportunities that digitisation brings in transforming rail operations for the 21st century. We look forward to using our experience to help enable TfNSW and Sydney Trains to implement this technology within their operations,” he added.

Go-Ahead shares were 0.7% down at 1,600.0p in early afternoon trade.

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Fri, 14 Dec 2018 12:03:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211235/go-ahead-group-bags-first-australian-contract-with-sydney-rail-deal-211235.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181214105936_13904427/ Fri, 14 Dec 2018 10:59:36 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181214105936_13904427/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Go-Ahead wins first contract in Australia ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181214091906_13904181/ Fri, 14 Dec 2018 09:19:06 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181214091906_13904181/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181213114432_13902813/ Thu, 13 Dec 2018 11:44:32 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181213114432_13902813/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead Group awarded Bavarian rail contract ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211050/go-ahead-group-awarded-bavarian-rail-contract-211050.html Go-Ahead Group (LON:GOG) said it had been awarded lot 1 of the `Augsburger Netze´ routes by the Bavarian rail authority and the Baden-Wurttemberg public transport authority.

The bus and rail group said this network links to three stations that Go-Ahead will be serving from 2019 through its other contracts in Baden-Württemberg.

READ: UK rail industry faces upheaval as MPs call for reforms after travel chaos at Govia Thameslink Railway

The contract will consist of 56 electrical trains, which will run on a network of 7.4mln train kilometres per year, the transport firm said.

Due to kick off in 2023, the 12-year franchise is the fifth network that Go-Ahead's Germany company, Go-Ahead Bus and Bahn, has been awarded and will extend its German business to some 20mln train kilometres per year. The other contracts start in 2019and 2021.

"This network complements our existing contracts in the region and builds on our desire to provide end-to-end journeys. Our growing local team continues to look for opportunities in the region as part of our strategy to build a long-term German transport business,” Go-Ahead CEO David Brown said in a statement.

Shares in Go-Ahead were 1.3% up at 1,592.0p in early trade.

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Wed, 12 Dec 2018 09:44:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211050/go-ahead-group-awarded-bavarian-rail-contract-211050.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - Go-Ahead awarded fifth rail network in Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181212091832_13900864/ Wed, 12 Dec 2018 09:18:32 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181212091832_13900864/ <![CDATA[News - UK rail industry faces upheaval as MPs call for reforms after travel chaos at Govia Thameslink Railway ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210486/uk-rail-industry-faces-upheaval-as-mps-call-for-reforms-after-travel-chaos-at-govia-thameslink-railway-210486.html A deal struck between Go-Ahead Group PLC’s (LON:GOG) Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) and the Department for Transport (DfT) could have implications for other UK rail operators that have suffered recent travel chaos.

Under the agreement, GTR will be allowed to keep its rail franchise despite disruptions caused by strikes and timetable changes but it will not be allowed to make a profit for the remainder of the financial year.

READ: Go-Ahead hangs on to franchise but accepts profits cap after year of commuter misery

GTR, which operates Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern, was also ordered to spend £15mln on “passenger enhancements”.

The railway group has already paid towards £15mln in compensation for passengers affected by the disastrous introduction of a new timetable in May.

The DfT said the recent travel chaos was “unacceptable” but decided that terminating the franchise was not an appropriate course of action because it would cause further and undue disruption for passengers.

David Brown, the chief executive of Go-Ahead, which owns 65% of GTR, said: "We recognise that the industry-wide failures in delivering the May timetable created huge difficulties for our customers, and we are sorry for the poor service they received.”

GTR not alone in suffering travel disruptions 

However, GTR is not the only rail operator in hot water over recent travel disruptions.

Services at South Western Railway, a joint venture between FirstGroup PLC (LON:FGP) and MTR Europe, have been hit by several strikes this year in a long-running dispute over the role of guards on trains.

Earlier this year, FirstGroup’s Great Western Railway cancelled and delayed services due to a “critical” shortage of trains.

Transport committee slams 'appalling services'

The Transport Select Committee on Tuesday called for a series of reforms for railways in a scathing report into the botched introduction of new timetables in May.

According to the report, GTR failed to run one in eight of its planned 3,880 daily services after the schedule changes.

It said one in nine services on Arriva Rail North, which operates Northern rail services, did not run following botched May timetable changes while FirstGroup’s TransPennine Express passengers were also badly affected.

Around a fifth of rail passengers have suffered "appalling services and been very badly let down" by the whole system, the committee’s report said.

Labour’s Lilian Greenwood, who chairs the committee, said: “It is extraordinary, and totally unacceptable, that no one took charge of the situation and acted to avert the May timetabling crisis."

The committee said the transport secretary, Chris Grayling, should have taken a “more proactive approach” in addressing the issues.

Grayling has announced an independent review into the state of the railways but Greenwood said commuters should not have to wait until 2020 for reforms to be implemented.

MPs call for fare freeze for commuters worst affected by rail timetable issues

The committee proposed a freeze on fare increases for season ticket holders most affected by the timetable fiasco on Thameslink, Great Northern, Northern and TransPennine Express. 

Ticket prices are due to increase by an average of 3.1% from 2 January 2019.

MPs also recommended that passengers be consulted for future timetable changes and move towards 'one-click' automated compensation to make claims easier for those affected by disruptions.

A DfT spokesperson said: “We have already worked with the industry to deliver special compensation schemes on Northern, TransPennine Express and GTR, which provides the equivalent of up to 8% of the cost of an annual season ticket for those most severely impacted.”

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Tue, 04 Dec 2018 12:45:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210486/uk-rail-industry-faces-upheaval-as-mps-call-for-reforms-after-travel-chaos-at-govia-thameslink-railway-210486.html
<![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead hangs on to GTR franchise but accepts profits cap after year of commuter misery ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210470/go-ahead-hangs-on-to-gtr-franchise-but-accepts-profits-cap-after-year-of-commuter-misery-210470.html Go-Ahead Group PLC’s (LON:GOG) GTR subsidiary has avoided being stripped of its rail franchise despite chaos on its network caused by strikes and timetable changes.

The Department of Transport said that terminating the franchise would cause further and undue disruption for passengers, so was not an appropriate course of action.

Instead, GTR has agreed to forego profits this year and will take a cap on what it makes until the franchise expires in 2021.

GTR will also contribute £15mln towards for 'tangible improvements' for passengers across the Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern commuter networks in and around London.

The railway group has already paid towards £15mln in compensation for passengers affected by the disastrous introduction of a new timetable in May.

A transport department  inquiry into this year’s misery on the railways concluded it was caused by a series of mistakes and complex issues.

The DOT added it will continue to monitor closely the performance of GTR and can levy further penalties if it trips up again.

David Brown, Go-Ahead chief executive, said: "We recognise that the industry-wide failures in delivering the May timetable created huge difficulties for our customers, and we are sorry for the poor service they received. “

Go -Ahead, which owns 65% of GTR, said its full year expectations for the current financial year remain unchanged.

 

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Tue, 04 Dec 2018 09:20:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210470/go-ahead-hangs-on-to-gtr-franchise-but-accepts-profits-cap-after-year-of-commuter-misery-210470.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - GTR reaches contractual agreement with DfT ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181204070015_13889918/ Tue, 04 Dec 2018 07:00:15 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181204070015_13889918/ <![CDATA[News - Go-Ahead moves up as recovery in rail after timetable chaos offsets lower expected bus performance ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210197/go-ahead-moves-up-as-recovery-in-rail-after-timetable-chaos-offsets-lower-expected-bus-performance-210197.html Go-Ahead Group PLC (LON:GOG) shares moved up in early trading Thursday after revenue growth in the year to-date (YTD) and a recovery in its rail segment from timetable chaos earlier in the year offset a forecast of lower first half profits in its regional buses arm and an expected drop in full year profits for its London buses.

In a trading update the FTSE 250 transport group, which operates services such as Govia Thameslink (GTR) and Southeastern, left its full year expectations unchanged adding that GTR’s performance had improved “substantially” since an interim timetable was put in place in mid-July with an additional 200 services per day.

The group also said preparations for another 200 daily services from 9 December were “well advanced”.

Over the summer, the introduction of a new rail timetable caused chaos for thousands of UK passengers as service times were changed and trains cancelled or severely delayed.

Despite this, Go-Ahead appeared to shrug off the calamity, reporting a 6.5% jump in pre-tax profits for the full year in September to £145.7mln.

READ: What problems? Go-Ahead shakes off timetable chaos to post rise in annual profits

At the time, Go-Ahead apologised for the disruption caused by the disastrous timetable changes, but refused to take all of the blame, instead citing “collective industry failures”.

For its Southeastern rail franchise, YTD passenger revenues were up 7% with journeys rising 5% boosted by a resumption of full services through London Bridge station and good weather.

Go-Ahead added that it had also secured a contract in October for the Norway South package of rail services which will run for eight years and begin in December, while preparations were continuing for the start of its German rail contracts in June 2019.

Mixed trends in buses

For buses, the group's regional segment reported 3% YTD revenue growth and a 1.5% rise in passenger journeys, lifted by the hot summer weather.

However, the firm added that it expected regional bus profit “to be lower” for the first half of the year, although this would be offset by a strong second performance boosted by contributions from East Yorkshire Motor Services, which the company acquired in June, as well as a comparative with last year’s period which was hit by severe weather.

The group also said its ‘Pick Me Up’ service in Oxford, launched in June, had grown to over 15,000 registered users.

As a result, Go-Ahead said it expected a “slight improvement” in full year operating profits for the segment.

Less luck for London

There was less good news for the group’s London bus division, which it forecast would report a lower full year profit.

Mileage and peak vehicle requirement (PVR) (the number of vehicles required to operate the highest service frequency on a route) were both down YTD by 4% and 6% respectively, while revenues for the segment crept up by 0.5%.

The drop in mileage and PVR was blamed on contract losses in the last financial year, although the firm said it was seeing better performances in its Singapore bus operation, which is reported in the segment.

CFO succession

Go-Ahead also announced that Elodie Brian had been appointed as interim chief financial officer for the group starting 3 December, having previously served as finance and contracts director at Southeastern.

The search for a permeant CFO continues.

Broker says update “encouraging” but questions bus sustainability

In a note to clients, analysts at City broker Liberum retained their ‘Hold’ rating on the stock, saying the firm showed “encouraging progress” but questioned the sustainability of the growth in its regional bus segment.

“London Bus saw the impact of previously-flagged contract losses, but the key there is to demonstrate improved cash generation now the peak of contract renewals has passed. The valuation remains attractive, with good dividend yield support, but we would want to see further evidence of progress against challenging industry conditions before turning positive” they added.

Shares were down 1.9% at 1,521p.

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Thu, 29 Nov 2018 08:34:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210197/go-ahead-moves-up-as-recovery-in-rail-after-timetable-chaos-offsets-lower-expected-bus-performance-210197.html
<![CDATA[RNS press release - The Go-Ahead Group Trading Update ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181129070002_13884309/ Thu, 29 Nov 2018 07:00:02 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181129070002_13884309/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181122160423_13877647/ Thu, 22 Nov 2018 16:04:23 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181122160423_13877647/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Employee Benefit Trust Share Purchase ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181122135735_13877464/ Thu, 22 Nov 2018 13:57:35 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181122135735_13877464/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181121113104_13875613/ Wed, 21 Nov 2018 11:31:04 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181121113104_13875613/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Director/PDMR Shareholding ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181115151203_13868935/ Thu, 15 Nov 2018 15:12:03 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181115151203_13868935/ <![CDATA[RNS press release - Result of AGM ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181101140234_13851840/ Thu, 01 Nov 2018 14:02:34 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/rns/3195/LSE20181101140234_13851840/