The bus franchising landscape has seen several developments recently. They undoubtedly serve to reset discussions about whether it is the right avenue to follow for large city regions.
Two groups that may have stood to benefit from bus franchising have publicly stated their opposition to the idea. Like the ‘big five’, they believe that improvement is best delivered through partnership.
Of course, neither of them speaks for the whole of the industry outside the big groups. Abellio beat them both by articulating its support for franchising.
Additionally, it remains to be seen how many smaller operators favour franchising. The risks . . .