8 Sep 2011

Go-Ahead profits rise 11 percent

The rising cost of driving will continue to shift Britons from roads to public transport, said bus and train operator Go-Ahead Group, as it reported strong profit growth in the year to July.
David Brown, the company’s new chief executive, argued the move away from car travel was a long-term trend, pointing to reports showing fewer young people taking driving tests and research suggesting the cost of running a car was a fifth higher today than three years ago.
That proved a boon to his company’s businesses, pushing up passenger numbers 2.3 per cent on a like-for-like basis in the non-London bus business and 4.2 per cent in rail.
Go-Ahead reported an 11 per cent jump in underlying pre-tax profits to £97.6m, helped by £13m in non-recurring cost-cuts, on revenues that were 6 per cent higher, at £2.3bn.

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