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National Express - Brief Trading Update

RNS Number : 9821M
National Express Group PLC
15 May 2020
 

NATIONAL EXPRESS GROUP PLC

 

Brief trading update

 

National Express Group today provides a brief update on April trading. This follows recent post-Covid-19 updates of 19 March and 14 April 2020 and that released alongside the Placing announcement on 6 May 2020.

 

April performance

Revenue for April is around 50% compared to the same month in 2019 which is in line with the guidance provided to investors during the recent Placing. Pleasingly, driven by reductions to our monthly operating costs of around £100m along with continued support from governments and customers, we generated positive EBITDA, slightly ahead of our expectations. This was further boosted by strong cash collections to drive positive cash flow for the month ahead of our expectations.

 

We have further improved our liquidity since our last update, and now have around £1.5 billion of cash and undrawn committed facilities.

 

Recent developments

In addition, there have been further positive developments as we move out of lockdown in our key markets:

·    North American School Bus: we have won our first contract (subject to school board approval) that came to market after the previous operator had the service removed following Covid-19 disruption. This contract is for 5 years and follows recent stand-out wins in: Boise, Idaho; Fairbanks, Alaska; and, Oakland, California:

o Across North America we have already begun start-up discussions with a large number of school districts, for a return to service at the start of their standard school year;

o In Quebec, Canada, when schools re-opened this week we note that 80% of students signed-up for school buses immediately.

·    ALSA: we are seeing lockdown measures being removed in both Spain and Morocco and expect services and demand to increase in both countries in the coming weeks:

o Spanish long haul: our early experience of the lockdown relaxation measures is demonstrating that we are able to cover our variable-costs with only 15 passengers on-board.

·    We have started selling UK coach tickets for a 1 July re-start - respecting government guidance and advice - of a core coach network that focuses on large and medium-sized conurbations.

 

Enquiries

National Express Group PLC        

Chris Davies, Group Finance Director

44 121 460 8655

Anthony Vigor, Director of Policy and External Affairs

+44 7767 425 822

Louise Richardson, Head of Investor Relations

+44 7827 807766

 

Legal Entity Identifier: 213800A8IQEMY8PA5X34


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Quick facts: National Express

Price: 166.1

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £1.02 billion
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