Ascendant Capital Advisors, the leading M&A advisory in the region of Southeast Europe, advised Autotrans Group on sale to Arriva.
The deal gives Arriva a 78.34% share in Autotrans Group (ATG), meaning Arriva is now the number one private bus operator in Croatia with responsibility for running long distance and local services throughout the country.
The announcement follows two recent deals which confirmed Arriva as a provider of key rail services in Sweden and the Netherlands – winning contracts worth more than 2bn euros.
Arriva has operated in Croatia since 2013, and the deal with Autotrans signals the company’s commitment to improving public transport services in the country.
Investing in Croatia is part of Arriva’s continuing strategy of expansion throughout Europe. In 2016 the company had revenues of more than 5bn euros and it invested 359m euros in its operations throughout the continent. Arriva operates in 14 countries across Europe, employing around 60,000 people and delivering more than 2.2 billion passenger journeys every year.
As well as expanding its services, Arriva is also at the forefront of innovative technical changes which are transforming public transport in Europe. The company has invested heavily in new environmental technology to reduce emissions, smart payment systems and access to wifi on board its buses and trains.
Manfred Rudhart, Arriva Group CEO said
“We are always looking for opportunities where we believe our experience and skills can make a real difference to passenger transport services in Europe. Croatia, and more broadly Central and Eastern Europe, represents an important growth opportunity for our expanding business and the Autotrans Group represented a good strategic fit for us. We will now focus on doing what we do best, which is to drive improvements for our customers in the region.”
Drazen Divjak, Managing Director for Arriva Croatia, added
“Autotrans is a highly-respected bus operator in Croatia with nearly 70 years of experience. They have successfully built a reputation for reliability and a strong customer service ethos and we are keen to build on their success. We have a strong track record for delivering real benefits to passengers and tendering authorities, and this acquisition allows us to expand our operations to create a robust network across the country and deliver improved, better connected door to destination services for our passengers.”