Monday 1 August 2022

Financial Problems for Yellow Buses Who Have Now Entered Administration

Yellow Buses, who have served the Bournemouth area for more than 120 years, have entered administration and Milsted Langdon LLP, have been appointed as Administrators of Bournemouth Transport Limited, which trades as Yellow Buses.

Milsted Langdon LLP have issued the followed statement.

"We recognise that many people rely on the Yellow Bus network for all sorts of aspects of their daily lives and that for them and the 300 staff employed by the business this is an unsettling time. We can recognise this and want to reassure everyone that we and our team are doing all we can to ensure that the business continues to operate as normal as possible under the circumstances and continues to do so into the future.

Yellow Buses has just celebrated its 120th birthday and so it is an unfortunate time to be facing this uncertainty. However, like many transport businesses, Yellow Buses has suffered from the challenges of the COVID period and the changes in lifestyle habits which have followed, with more people working remotely and some people still being reluctant to travel on public transport. All of this has severely reduced passenger numbers on all routes.

This loss of revenue has had a financial impact on the business and additional factors such as the recent increase in fuel prices and the general rise in inflation has only made that greater.

The directors have, for some time, been looking for outside investment or a purchaser to take Yellow Buses onto the next stage of its life. They felt that as a small independent business it was unable to handle the current challenges alone and hoped that by merging with a larger operator it would provide them with a broader platform from which to operate.

Unfortunately, those negotiations take time, and during that time the business was coming under increasing financial pressure. Negotiations with one of those parties, a large national operator, have entered the final stages and we hope to be able to conclude within a matter of days.

With its long history in the local area and its integral role within the community we appreciate that there will be a great number of people concerned about this news, what we would ask is that the community shows it support by using the services. Support Yellow Buses and crucially its staff by using the bus. Take a trip on one of the buses and let the drivers know they have your support. Show them just how important this service is to everyone.

We will of course keep the staff and customers updated over the coming days."

Loss of revenue, rising fuel prices and the general rise in inflation have all been blamed as factors for the decision. Cllr Mike Greene, BCP Council’s portfolio holder for transport, said: “The council is doing what it can to support Yellow Buses, ensuring that passengers continue to be able to access bus services to get to work, education, to the hospital and the shops.

“As well as providing essential transport for our residents, Yellow Buses are also a major employer. The iconic yellow buses are part of the local heritage and we would not wish to lose them.”

Yellow Buses’ employ 300 staff, but drivers are being reassured the administrators are doing “all they can” to ensure the business operates “as normal as possible”.

In 2017 the company took delivery of delivery of six new Alexander Dennis Enviro400 MMC Euro 6 double-decker buses, equipped with stop-start technology.

The company had been previously been owned by RATP, but on 2nd July 2019 the company was taken over by the management team of David Squire (Managing Director), Phil Pannell (Service Delivery Director) and Simon Newport (Commercial Director). The associated mon-trading company of Vintage Yellow Buses Ltd was also included in the sale.

The decision was prompted by RATP wishing to focus on their franchise operations in London, together with sightseeing and coach Businesses in London, Bath and the North West.  

Full History of the company here