Stagecoach to expand operations in Manchester

Stagecoach Group, the FTSE 250 transport company, has announced that its wholly owned indirect subsidiary, Greater Manchester Buses South, has agreed to acquire the bus business and assets of private operator Bluebird.

Stagecoach Group, the FTSE 250 transport company, has announced that its wholly owned indirect subsidiary, Greater Manchester Buses South, has agreed to acquire the bus business and assets of private operator Bluebird.

The business is being acquired for a consideration of £2.0m, and will allow the company to expand its bus operations in the Greater Manchester region, where it already operates around 630 buses and employs 1,850 staff. The Bluebird operations will become part of Stagecoach Manchester.

In the year ended January 31st 2012, the business had revenues of £4.0m, EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) of around £480,000 and an operating profit of around £330,000.

Under the agreement, Stagecoach is committed to acquiring the business only if clearance is given by the Office of Fair Trading. If approved, Stagecoach expects the acquisition to be completed in the first quarter of 2013.

Les Warneford, Managing Director of Stagecoach UK Bus, said: "This is a good fit with our existing successful bus network in Greater Manchester. We believe there is scope to develop the business and attract more customers to bus travel through our good value fares and high quality of service."

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