Snap ‘pauses’ operations as it seeks new funds

Profits in some cities, but not business-wide; negotiations underway with September restart planned

On-demand intercity coach travel provider Snap “temporarily paused” its operations from yesterday (18 June) while discussions continue with funders.

CEO Thomas Ableman says that while the Snap has proved able to generate profit in individual cities, it is not profitable at a business-wide level, hence the requirement for ongoing investment. It is currently in negotiations to secure that.

If funding is forthcoming, Mr Ableman anticipates restarting operations in September. Snap is not insolvent, and it intends to honour all its commitments to suppliers, customers and staff.

Mr Ableman says that all operators that have undertaken work for Snap will be paid in full. Those that had agreed to provide coaches on future dates will be offered payment equal to the profit that they would have earned on those trips.

“This news is not a reflection on how the business has progressed so far. We have seen outstanding customer satisfaction scores. We have carried 220,000 people over 25m miles with over 90% rating their experience as five-star.

“While our funding round may have been slower than we’d hoped, I am proud of the incredible achievements of the Snap team and I am confident that we have great things ahead of us.”

Customers with bookings for after the pause began were sent an email last weekend informing them that the trips had been cancelled and that they would receive a refund.

Mr Ableman believes that a slowdown in student travel over the summer will cushion the blow of Snap’s hiatus, and that the traditionally busy period for coach hire will allow operators to redeploy vehicles elsewhere. “The current funding market is difficult, and it is very risk-averse. Many businesses at this stage would keep quiet and not reveal that there was a problem. We are pausing while we still have plenty of cash in the bank.”