From trains to buses, Keolis is strengthening its position in continental Europe

Within a day of each other, Keolis started operating two new major rail networks in Germany and the Netherlands, as well as a bus network in Greater Amsterdam, in December 2017. Three launches that reinforce the Group’s growth and strong position in Continental Europe.

TWN, the 4th train network operated by Keolis in Germany

On 10 December 2017, Keolis launched operations for the Teutoburger-Wald-Network (TWN). The contract for this 500km rail network, which is made up of 5 lines and 52 stations, was awarded to Keolis two years ago.  Located in North Rhine Westphalia, the most densely populated region of Germany with 18 million residents, the network includes a cross-border connection with the Netherlands. Its 27 trains are expected to cover a distance of 5.3 million km per year and will travel at 160km/h. The 15-year contract reinforces the Group’s position in the German rail market, where Keolis already operates the  Five-Ostwestfalen-Lippe-Netz, Hellwegnetz et Maas-Rhen-Lippe-Netz networks in North Rhine Westphalia. In 2018, two other contracts awarded to Keolis are due to start: the extension of the Hellwegnetz network and, in 2019, the regional train network of the Rhin-Rhur (‘S-Bahn Rhein-Ruhr’) region. The development of Keolis’ activities in Germany will also see the local subsidiary grow signficantly, increasing its headcount from 600 to 900 employees by the end of 2019.

Launch of Keolis’ second regional rail network in the Netherlands

On 11 December, Keolis Nederland, the Group’s Dutch subsidiary (formerly Syntus) with 1,900 employees, launched the operation of regional trains in the Orverijssel province, which connects the city of Zwolle to Enschede and Kampen in the Netherlands. With 81km of track and 14 stations, it meets the needs of the 1.2 million residents. Its 16 electric trains cover 2.6 million km of track per year and run at 160km/h. The 15-year contract is expected to generate cumulative revenue of 300 million euros by 2032. The network offers a large range of mobility solutions (buses, bikes, on-demand transport, etc.) and is the second largest regional rail network operated by Keolis in the Netherlands, after the Twente province network.

600 million passengers per year on board Keolis trains

These two new rail contracts in Europe attest to Keolis’ train and mass transit expertise. In total, the Group now operates 1,100 regional trains across 10 networks in the United States (including MBTA in Boston, Virginia Rail Express in Washington DC), four networks in Germany, two in the Netherlands and two in the United Kingdom, carrying around 600 million passengers per year.  

An improved mobility experience on board comfortable trains 

In Germany as well as the Netherlands, Keolis will provide an improved passenger experience and meet higher safety standards, thanks to the renewal of equipment and new services. Of the 27 TWN network trains, 19 of them will be refurbished. With each one consisting of five carriages and able to carry up to 532 passengers (with half that number seated), the new trainsets which have already undergone careful refurbishment now have wider entrances to make boarding and disembarking easier for passengers. Each train is also equipped with ticket machines and can store up to 24 bikes. Orverijssel network passengers have received the same attention to comfort. Its trainsets composed of three or four carriages (from 228 to 260 passengers) set themselves apart with illuminated interior large glass surfaces, air suspension, comfortable seats, large entrace doors on each side, power points, free WiFi access and a space for wheelchairs. 

Keolis’ first high-frequency buses outside France

On 11 December 2017, Keolis Nederland also started the 10-year operating contract for ‘AllGo’, the bus network in Almere, a rapidly growing city close to Amsterdam.  With 46km of track, the network is notable for its innovative design structured around 14 lines, including six high-frequency ones operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As part of the contract, the Group will operate 101 vehicles, including seven 100% electric buses and 31 high-frequency buses, which run every five minutes and service 85% of the city’s network. This is the first time that Keolis will operate high-frequency bus lines in Europe outside France. ‘AllGo’ is expected to transport 100,000 passengers every day. 

2017, a year of success and innovation for Keolis in Continental Europe

With these three new launches, Keolis ends a successful year in Continental Europe. In July 2017, the Group launched the United Kingdom’s first tram network in Manchester (96km of track).  EFFIA carried out its Alfa Park and Parkeren Roselaere acquisitions in Belgium, which mark the parking subsidiary’s first stages of international development. Finally, Keolis launched HelloGo in the Netherlands, the first mobile app in the country combining all everyday transport modes and allowing passengers to manage their entire journey on their smartphones.