National Express in Stagecoach take-over talks
Stagecoach has confirmed it is in talks with National Express in relation to a possible take over.
If the potential deal went ahead, it would see Stagecoach shareholders holding approximately 25% of the combined group.
Both Boards of the groups believe the potential combination of the the two businesses would result in significant growth and cost synergies.
It would see National Express use Stagecoach’s depot network to run and maintain its coaches. This is expected to result in improved operational flexibility of the coach network, removing such things as double-manning, dead mileage and spare vehicle capacity, as well as repair and maintenance benefits.
Boost to NatEx private hire
National Express believes the potential merger will accelerate the expansion of its growth businesses, such as private hire coach, corporate shuttle and accessible transport, across Stagecoach’s UK footprint.
There are pre-tax cost synergies expected to result of a potential merger, along with various cost savings. Realising such potential synergies would require one-off costs of up to around £40 million over a two year period. It would see shared operational best practice, in particular with the installation of onboard technology such as the DriveCam system national Express fits.
If the potential deal went ahead, Ray O’Toole would become Chair of the Board of the Combined Group, with Sir John Armitt CBE stepping down, having been Chair of National Express since February 2013. Jorge Cosmen would be Deputy Chair of the Combined Group and Ignacio Garat and Chris Davies would be CEO and CFO.
Talks are ongoing and no outcome has yet been finalised.
- Trade union Unite has made warnings over the potential takeover, saying they come at a time of industrial unrest at Stagecoach