Abellio (transport Company)
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Abellio Transport Company
IndustryPublic transport
The Netherlands
Area served
Czech Republic
The Netherlands
United Kingdom
Key people
Jeff Hoogesteger (CEO)
OwnerNederlandse Spoorwegen
SubsidiariesAbellio Deutschland
Abellio London
Abellio ScotRail
East Midlands Railway
Greater Anglia (60%)
Merseyrail (50%)
West Midlands Trains (70%)

Abellio is a public transport company that operates services in Europe, with both bus and rail networks. It was founded as NedRailways in 2001, before being renamed Abellio in October 2009. Abellio is wholly owned by the Dutch national rail operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen.

Czech Republic

Abellio bought Probo Bus and ran its network in the Czech Republic in 2009. It consisted of regional bus transport in the Beroun District and surroundings and some long-distance bus lines between Prague and South and West Bohemia.

Abellio CZ founded in July 2011. In spring 2012, Abellio CZ lodged an extensive complaint about wrong assignment of the tender to running of fast train line Ostrava - Krnov - Olomouc. The complaints were completely rejected.

In November 2013, Abellio sold Abellio CZ and Probo Bus to Arriva with 110 buses.[1][2]


Abellio Deutschland was formed by the Essen public transit company in 2004. In December 2005, British investment company Star Capital Partners purchased a 75% share in Abellio from the City of Essen.[3] In December 2008, both sold their shares to NedRailways.[4][5] The Abellio brand was later rolled out to replace the NedRailways brand internationally.[6]


In April 2013, Abellio Deutschland announced it would focus on rail transport and sell its three bus companies. In November 2013 VM and Werner were sold to Transport Capital with 220 buses.[7][8] The remaining KVG business was sold to Rhenus Veniro and the District of Bautzen in October 2014 with 84 buses.[9]


As at December 2016, Abellio Deutschland operated 18 lines over 978 kilometres with a fleet of 86 trains.[10] Abellio Deutschland owned a 25% share in WestfalenBahn that was founded in 2005.[10][11] In July 2017 this was increased to 100%.[12]

The Netherlands

Qbuzz was founded in 2008 by two former Connexxion directors with Abellio having a 49% shareholding.[13] Abellio purchased the remaining 51% in April 2013.[14][15]

In March 2015, Qbuzz was awarded a 15-year concession to operate services in the province of Limburg from December 2016. However, after the discovery of irregularities during the tender process, the contract was awarded to Arriva.[16][17][18] In July 2016, Nederlandse Spoorwegen announced its intention to sell Qbuzz.[19] In July 2017 it was sold to Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane subsidiary Busitalia.[20]

United Kingdom

A pair of Abellio Surrey Dennis Darts in November 2009


In May 2009, Abellio purchased the Travel London and Travel Surrey businesses from National Express and rebranded them Abellio London and Abellio Surrey in October 2009.[21] The latter closed in September 2018.[22]


Abellio has a 50% shareholding in Serco-Abellio that has bid for a number of rail franchises. The joint venture has operated the Merseyrail franchise since July 2003.[23] Serco-Abellio also operated the Northern Rail franchise from December 2004 until March 2016.[24] Serco-Abellio also lodged unsuccessful bids for the Wales & Borders, West Midlands and Tyne & Wear Metro franchises.

Abellio has also bid for a number of franchises in its own right, lodging bids for the South Western franchise (in partnership with FirstGroup), London Overground, South Central, InterCity West Coast, Essex Thameside, Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern and Northern franchises.[25][26][27]

In February 2012, Abellio Greater Anglia commenced operating the East Anglia franchise.[28] In 2016, Abellio successfully bid to retain the renamed East Anglia franchise until 2025.[29] In January 2017, Abellio sold a 40% stake in the business to Mitsui.[30]

In April 2015, Abellio ScotRail commenced operating the ScotRail franchise.[31][32][33]

In December 2017, West Midlands Trains, a joint venture with East Japan Railway Company and Mitsui in which Abellio owns 70%, commenced operating the West Midlands franchise.[34][35]

In February 2018, Abellio withdrew from a bid for the Wales & Borders franchise. This bid had been undertaken in partnership with Carillion, but the liquidation of the latter left it without an infrastructure partner.[36]

In August 2019, Abellio commenced operating the East Midlands Railway franchise.[37]


  1. ^ Deutsche Bahn purchases Czech companies from Abellio Archived 2016-04-02 at the Wayback Machine Deutsche Bahn 29 November 2013
  2. ^ Arriva acquires Abellio's Czech operations Bus & Coach Buyer 4 December 2013
  3. ^ Star Capital Partners completes two new German investments Archived 2016-09-11 at the Wayback Machine Star Capital Partners 27 January 2006
  4. ^ Contracts Railway Gazette International 13 December 2008
  5. ^ Abellio Archived 2016-04-03 at the Wayback Machine Star Capital Partners
  6. ^ Company History Abellio
  7. ^ Completion of sale of Hessen bus Abellio
  8. ^ Luther advises Transport Capital AG on the acquisition of two bus companies from the Abellio Group Luther 11 November 2013
  9. ^ Abellio sells the Dreiländereck to Oberlausitz Abellio 29 October 2014 (German)
  10. ^ a b Welcome to Abellio Archived 2017-08-10 at the Wayback Machine Abellio February 2017
  11. ^ The Company WestfalenBahn (German)
  12. ^ Abellio takes full ownership of WestfalenBahn as market gets more competitive Railway Gazette International 18 July 2017
  13. ^ Connexxion, Arriva and Qbuzz NRC Handelsblad 2 September 2011 (Dutch)
  14. ^ NS obtains remaining share in Qbuzz Archived 2014-08-25 at the Wayback Machine Nederlandse Spoorwegen February 2014
  15. ^ Qbuzz Archived 2017-08-10 at the Wayback Machine Abellio
  16. ^ NS uncovers tendering irregularities Railway Gazette International 29 April 2015
  17. ^ Arriva wins re-awarded Limburg operating contract Railway Gazette International 3 June 2015
  18. ^ Arriva delighted as it profits from scandal at rival Abellio The Daily Telegraph 9 June 2015
  19. ^ NS puts Qbuzz up for sale Railway Gazette International 11 July 2016
  20. ^ Busitalia buys Qbuzz, Dutch public transport services company[permanent dead link] Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane 13 July 2017
  21. ^ National Express Group plc agreement to sell Travel London[dead link] National Express Group 21 May 2009
  22. ^ "Falcon Coaches to take over Abellio's remaining Surrey route" Coach & Bus Week issue 1357 28 August 2018 page 11
  23. ^ Merseyrail franchise goes Dutch The Daily Telegraph 24 April 2003
  24. ^ Serco-NedRailways Announced as Preferred Bidder for new Northern Rail franchise Strategic Rail Authority 1 July 2004
  25. ^ Short Listed Bidders for Greater Anglia and InterCity West Coast Rail Franchises Department for Transport 24 March 2011
  26. ^ Bidders to oversee improvements on rail franchises announced Department for Transport 29 March 2012
  27. ^ Shortlist for Northern and TransPennine operators revealed Department for Transport 19 August 2014
  28. ^ Greater Anglia rail franchise announcement Department for Transport 20 October 2011
  29. ^ Better journeys for rail passengers and boost for Derby train industry as new East Anglia franchise announced Department for Transport 10 August 2016
  30. ^ Abellio to sell 40% stake in Greater Anglia to Mitsui Railway Gazette International 17 January 2017
  31. ^ Dutch firms wins ScotRail franchise from FirstGroup BBC News 8 October 2014
  32. ^ Abellio awarded ScotRail franchise Railway Gazette International 8 October 2014
  33. ^ Abellio awarded contract to operate Scotland's National Railway, ScotRail Abellio
  34. ^ More seats for rail passengers as nearly £1 billion is invested in Midlands services Department for Transport 10 August 2017
  35. ^ West Midlands Trains announced as winning bidder for West Midlands franchise Abellio 10 August 2017
  36. ^ "Abellio ends rail bid after Carillion collapse". BBC News. BBC. 23 February 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  37. ^ More seats and services and state of the art trains for passengers on new East Midlands railway Department for Transport 10 April 2019

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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