NZ buyout announced


Souter Group boosts its NZ public transport holdings with buyout of Rotorua bus operator

Rotorua’s Reesby Buses has been acquired by the parent company of New Zealand inter-city operator Mana Bus.

Reesby Buses operates both coachlines and urban route services in the central North Island tourist hotspot.

The move follows Souter Group’s acquisition of Naked Bus in May and the organisation now owns a mix of urban, inter-city, charter and tour bus businesses.

Souter Group chairman Sir Brian Souter says with its public transport reach growing, the timing is right for the transport holdings arm to have its own identity and become the InMotion Group.

"With ManaBus.com’s acquisition of nakedbus.com in May, and now the addition of Reesby, we felt it was time the group’s transport interests had a separate identity," he says.

Putting the group’s bus and ferry businesses together should help facilitate future growth and development, Souter says.

The acquisition of Reesby Buses expands the InMotion network to more than 340 buses and coaches and 17 ferries, carrying over 16 million passengers each year in New Zealand.

InMotion chief executive Bill Rae says management at Mana Coach Services, Reesby Rotorua and Howick and Eastern Buses will remain unchanged.

There organisation has indicated it intends to win tenders that will help grow its bus operations in the years ahead.

"A number of provincial urban services in the North Island are coming up for tender and we will be looking very closely at any and all of those opportunities," Rae says.

Having Reesby buses, Rae says, will improve operating efficiency and in time increase the range of services the company offers and its CityRide buses are a good fit with InMotion’s plan to develop its urban route-service bus operations.

The organisation expects to invest up to $100 million into its New Zealand bus and ferry holdings over the next three years.

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