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UPDATE 1-Go-Ahead warns of uncertainty on second-wave fears

Thu, 24th Sep 2020 07:47

(Recasts, adds detail)

LONDON, Sept 24 (Reuters) - UK transport operator Go-Ahead
said that it was now running more than 90% of its bus
and rail services across the country but the pandemic was
causing uncertainty over its outlook.

For the 12-months to 27 June, Go-Ahead posted operating
profit before exceptional items of 77.9 million pounds ($99
million), slightly ahead of its guidance, but below the 121
million pounds it made last year.

Profit was hit by difficulties in its German rail business
and from the impact of COVID-19 which pushed down passenger
numbers in its regional bus business by as much as 90%, but the
group did benefit from government support measures.

Go-Ahead said passenger numbers had now risen to 50 to 60%
of previous levels as the economy opened up again, but the next
few months looked uncertain given new restrictions in the UK
where COVID-19 infections are once again rising.
Government support for UK rail contracts will help its rail
business to deliver a breakeven performance in its new financial
year, but it said it could not provide a forecast for its
regional bus unit.

On London and international buses, Go-Ahead said the
division would make a profit similar to the 48.5 million pounds
it made last year.
($1 = 0.7870 pounds)
(Reporting by Sarah Young; editing by James Davey and Paul
Sandle)

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