Danish railways and FirstGroup win Sweden rail deal
Reuters: Aug 28, 2009
COPENHAGEN - Danish state railway DSB and British bus and rail operator FirstGroup (FGP.L) won an eight-year deal worth about 2 billion Danish crowns ($385.9 million) to provide commuter services for Gothenburg, Sweden, DSB said on Friday.
The service will be provided from December 2010 by a joint venture called DSBFirst Vast in which DSB has a 70 percent stake and FirstGroup 30 percent, DSB said.
The contract runs for eight years with an option to extend it for two years, DSB said. "The tender is one of the largest in Sweden with annual passenger basis of more than 15 million, which from 2012 is expected to rise by 30-40 percent when new lines are introduced," DSB said in a statement.
DSB said that with the new contract it is the second biggest passenger operator in Sweden, accounting for over a quarter of total traffic.
The Gothenburg regional transport system consists of 11 lines, used by about 60,000 people daily, DSB said.
In 2008, the system registered around 15 million journeys totalling about 8 million rail kilometres, DSB said.
With the addition of this contract, DSB will drive 22 million kilometres annually in Sweden, or about equal to the amount in the whole Danish regional rail system, DSB said.
It said the Gothenburg contract would also boost it above its goal of serving more than 40 million passengers per year outside Denmark.
FirstGroup shares traded up 0.7 percent at 379.8 pence on the London Stock Exchange at 1245 GMT.