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First Manchester
RE: First Manchester
They did drop quite a few evening runs from Bolton Depot last month so possibly it is a case of hanging on to what they really want and dropping the rest. Oldham also lost the 58 but First won the route at tender so it didn't look as bad but technically, it is one less commercial route.

I think that more companies should be jumping forward to take on First routes. I think they are worried if they start going for routes, First will retaliate by flooding the routes (The only way First compete). I think until Stagecoach, Rotala and other companies wake up and see how bad of a state First is in, the routes will just keep plodding on and being gradually reduced and put out to tender.

I am struggling to see how First are making such big losses. IF it doesn't make money, why would they keep running it. Is it a case of depot costs and not the physical routes making the company loss making. Things like too many managers on high pay, too many mechanics, high fuel cost and the depots having high land costs.
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RE: First Manchester
(14/05/2019 19:15)gilesbus1 Wrote:  Oldham is the big loss maker out of the three, yet the only one there they have a mere monopoly, seems to me that they have been badly hit with the introduction and expansion of Metrolink services there. Manchester was obviously the big catch to be made as that went first of all. Bolton is complicated with the Vantage situation in a number of ways, first of all Vantage can't be sold to another operator under TfGM rules or the contract has to be handed back to TfGM and re-let seperately, but without it is Bolton all that good. Also the complexity of the Bid for Green Bus funding and new buses for the 582 ment the recharging facilities between the Vantage and 582 had to be shared under the terms of the bid, so if the 582 is not operated by First both the 582 and Vantage would likely lose there money for Electric Buses, can't see TfGM being happy about that, so I think Bolton might be in the situation were it has to remain with FirstGroup until FirstGroup are no more along with the 582, or until the franchise comes to an end.

As for elsewhere, there is an American Venture Capital Company trying to buy out shares, they went from 8% to 10% yesterday, and there is unhappiness amongst shareholders as they have now han no dividend for 10 years or so, so this company says it will continue to buy shares and once it has control will insist on the sacking of 7 of the 12 board members including the Chief Executive and will bring in its own board members, it wants to squeeze money out of the business like any Venture Capitalist owned company does, it only appears interested long term in the American arm of the business and would split the business in two and pull out of rail as it believes rail is the issue causing problem now for all the groups and that rail franchises are unable to raise enough profit now. UK Buses no doubt would be sold on maybe to a UK venture capitalist who would no doub't then start dismantling the business and selling parts onwards for the other players to try to buy. Shutting business' down though is not a good option what they will look for is to sell on, maybe closing depots along the way in various regions and maybe winding down the odd operation as per Barnstaple and Northampton. Oldham would be a big candidate for that, as would the likes of Livingston, Bracknell etc... Then there is the offer from Aberdeen City Council that has been previously dismissed by FirstGroup to acquire First Aberdeen and take it back into there ownership, in Scotland it may be possible for that to happen.

Bristol operations now also look to be starting to come apart with driver and vehicle shortages around last Christmas that gave them much bad publicity.

My own feeling in regards to Greater Manchester operations is that the Bolton set up will pass eventually either to Stagecoach or Rotala and the Oldham set up will close down, the Vantage will separately probably end up with Stagecoach along with the 582.

In the case of Stagecoach it would need to be new company separate from Manchester controlling both Wigan and Bolton depots set up, perhaps Stagecoach Wigan Ltd or Greater Manchester Buses West Ltd or something like that with no day to day management link between the two, it might also be probable was that to happen that Preston operations would also be managed by this rather than Glenvale as per now, that would allow Chorley outstation to close and vehicles for the 125 to move to Bolton depot. The separation of Wigan would then allow Stagecoach Manchester to cherry pick though the remains of the Oldham operations along with GoAhead.

Where's the evidence that Oldham is running at a loss?
I find it hard to believe. I'm not saying things there are rosy but there's no way that management would simply close up shop and allow other operators to pick up there dropped services etc.
Metrolink will have had an impact but I think theu still carry good loads from Piccadilly on a daily basis.

I would imagine Oldham would be the last to be sold anyway.
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RE: First Manchester
42940/941/944 AND 945 ALL ARRRIVED AT FIRST ESSEX CHELMSFORD ON 04/05/2019
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RE: First Manchester
Is 59006 likely to return before the Go Ahead takeover it’s my only Free Bus/Metroshuttle Optare left and I’d love to get the whole fleet in before the take over
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RE: First Manchester
Wright Streetlite's 63154/155/156 all seen operating on service 41 today (May 28th).
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RE: First Manchester
what has transferred to queens rd before the changeover at the weekend?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jonesy3001/

If it's not in london they dont want to know
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RE: First Manchester
On a separate note, the demolish-on man looks like he's moved in to the former Bury Depot as all the doors were open and a pile of building rubbish was piled up outside.
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RE: First Manchester
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-48456840
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Tongue RE: First Manchester
(30/05/2019 11:08)Atlanteanfan Wrote:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-48456840

Complete and full official details here : https://www.firstgroupplc.com/~/media/Fi...update.pdf
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RE: First Manchester
Presume by this, rather than selling off individual depots, they will in the meantime look to restructure Buses as a separate company, Therefore it looks unlikely any further garages will be sold in the interim, and a new Chief Executive will look at it, and decide what he/she wants to do, regards to Manchester and any other operating companies that are losing money.

There would be a great opportunity to start to grow again given that the concentration would be on buses and there would be no diversion from management time by other area's of the business, plus a substantial quantity of the losses and debt would vanish as well.

If any of this is done quickly, but admittedly they aren't normally that leads it open to either take-over or in a position to take-over other operators, maybe from any divestment Stagecoach might be faced with making should it take over Arriva, so perhaps depots like Wythenshawe might appeal to regrow the Manchester operations, as might other take-overs.

The other option is that Stagecoach holts its take-over of Arriva as a take-over of Firsts Bus Operations might be easier for Stagecoach to come by and suit there existing market place of bus operations better.

Clash area's if Stagecoach did go for FirstGroup Buses rather than Arriva would be:-

Aberdeen
Greater Glasgow/Western
Greater Manchester
South Yorkshire
Portsmouth
The South West)- The issue here is every major operator outside Plymouth would be Stagecoach controlled between Gloucester and Lands End.
South Wales.

Looks interesting times ahead.
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