Market and Business Analysis of the Long-distance Coach Travel within the Strategic Alignment of a Transport Operating Company

Since 2013, a “new” mode of transportation is available in Germany following the market liberalisation of the long-distance coach travel. Its growth rates have proven that a liberalised market is also quite attractive – not only for passengers, but also for transport operating companies. In the course, expert estimates regarding market volume have varied to a great extent. However, previous market developments have matched the market potentials forecasted by BSL Transportation which have been presented during numerous expert discussions and publications.

Derivation of detailed demand potentials and aggregation of market specific costs

This know-how was shared, of course, and deepened with our clients in various consulting projects. During the preparation of the complete market liberalisation, BSL analysed the TOC’s relevant activities and developed different scenarios in regards to the strategic alignment of the business segment.

The following aspects were analysed in-depth:

  • Cost structures in the long-distance coach market – broken down into individual functions and different service structures
  • Demand structure, target groups, demand potentials of individual lines – each time in line with the services offered, the travel distance and the specific pricing system (incl. yield management)
  • Derivation of the capacity utilisation rates of the overall portfolio, but also broken down regarding individual lines, weekdays and time of day
  • Holistic calculation in the sense of a business case and based on individual lines in due consideration of all costs and revenues involved

The long-distance coach market as a pioneer and driving force in the development in public transport

Based on the preceding analysis and calculations, BSL presented different options regarding market presence and takeover of individual services from the value-added chain (make or buy strategy). Those options were the result of a comprehensive SWOT analysis which was based on the strengths and weaknesses of the assessed transport operator compared to its competitors (including rail operators) as well as opportunities and threats in the long-distance coach market.

Apart from training and the further development of infrastructure (i.e. bus stops), the market’s most important trends and general framework include the international inclusion of services offered and the collaboration with other (innovative) transport service providers.

08. March 2019