Are GTR finished?

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southernyoshi

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With all the driver sickness/strike problems caused by their war on their staff they're having, and the huge disruption that it's causing, is there any way that the disputes - and the disruption - can end short of GTR going the way of Connex & having their franchise stripped & nationalised? If it is stripped, how long would the process take?
 
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talltim

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Well, they've already breached their franchise/management contract agreements, so in theory they should already have gone. But as they seem to be doing the DfTs dirty work for them expect more blind eyes turned.
 

Carlisle

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With all the driver sickness/strike problems caused by their war on their staff they're having, and the huge disruption that it's causing, is there any way that the disputes - and the disruption - can end short of GTR going the way of Connex & having their franchise stripped & nationalised? If it is stripped, how long would the process take?

I can see why many want to see the end of GTR however if it happened right now wouldn't it simply be be a major invititation to some in the unions nationally to hugely ramp up any future industrial action of all kinds until their franchise got stripped ? , :D
 
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ComUtoR

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Probably a great time to buy shares. While there is a lot of negativity the shares take a dip and once they have finally screwed the staff over the profits will invariably rise.
 

GB

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Probably a great time to buy shares. While there is a lot of negativity the shares take a dip and once they have finally screwed the staff over the profits will invariably rise.

or you will end up with shares with a company that doesn't exist.
 

TheEdge

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Do you have a source or evidence for this assertion?

Was the renegotiation of all their targets because they had come well short of the minimum service required not evidence of that?
 

ComUtoR

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Do you have a source or evidence for this assertion?

It's buried in the DOO thread somewhere. They were given an extension of sorts iirc and one of the criteria was changed by the DfT. So yes they were in breach but an allowance was made, as per the franchise agreement.
 

tony6499

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I don't know about finished as in having the franchise removed but they are in Ratners land now as a brand so in that way they're finished.

The GTR/Southern brand is toxic now
 

Bletchleyite

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I don't know about finished as in having the franchise removed but they are in Ratners land now as a brand so in that way they're finished.

The GTR/Southern brand is toxic now

GTR isn't really a brand. The brands are Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express. Southern is a bit tarnished, but has its great historical strength. The others are fine.

This may well be why they have moved away from the common "riband" branding.
 

HLE

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The DFT won't strip them of the franchise. Peter Wilkinson's statement a few months back sums up the position. The government seem to be out to cut the unions and employee power from the arteries outwards, on the railway, in the hospitals.....
 

coppercapped

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Probably a great time to buy shares. While there is a lot of negativity the shares take a dip and once they have finally screwed the staff over the profits will invariably rise.

Are you being ironic or do you really mean buying shares in GTR? If so, you'll find that difficult, GTR being a wholly-owned subsidiary of Govia, so there are no shares offered on the open market. In turn Govia is a joint venture between the Go-Ahead Group and Keolis with the shares split 65% to Go-Ahead and 35% to Keolis. Keolis is a French company 70% owned by the SNCF and 30% by the Quebec Deposit & Investment Fund, a public pension fund - so again, no publicly traded shares. At best you will be able to buy shares in the Go-Ahead Group, but as it has other interests apart from its share of Govia any effect on the share price by happenings on GTR will be diluted.

Anyway, you have royally missed the point. GTR is a management contract whereby GTR is paid a fee to operate the train service and the revenue from the passengers, once divvied up after being allocated by ORCATS, is paid directly to the Government. Essentially GTR's revenue is determined for the duration of the contract, so however the dispute works out it will have little or no effect on the price of any publicly traded shares.
 

ComUtoR

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At best you will be able to buy shares in the Go-Ahead Group, but as it has other interests apart from its share of Govia any effect on the share price by happenings on GTR will be diluted.

Hence my link to the Go-ahead share price.

If you read the franchise agreement then you will also see that if the profits are increased then so will the revenue to Govia. Also Go-Ahead is a shareholder so every penny it receives will affect the bottom line. People will also trade on reputation, hence the Ratners comment also posted.

The fact that the Go-Ahead share price is currently dropping and showing a downward trend can be seen as the market reacting to a potential loss of the GTR franchise.

If Govia drop the Guards Role and come 2018 the profit from the franchise increases and they do achieve their targeted revenue from the franchise then it is certainly going to increase the share price of Go-Ahead.

So yes I certainly believe that this is good time to take a punt on some Go-Ahead shares.
 

yorkie

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GTR isn't really a brand. The brands are Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express. Southern is a bit tarnished, but has its great historical strength. The others are fine..
A bit tarnished?! That's a huge understatement! The Gatwick Express brand is also suffering heavily, especially given many people realise the trains are no faster (indeed often slower) than their Southern trains and very often the "Express" is cancelled and passengers are simply told to wait 15/30/45 minutes until the next one, rather than told about a train leaving from another platform in just a few minutes. People are getting very angry.
 

dk1

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This all stinks of McNulty by the back door to me. Issues at the other end of the UK too! Seems like a government test for Union solidarity/TOC power.
 

IKB

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With all the driver sickness....

Eh, where have you pulled that rabbit from...? Corporate PR?

Read the latest Private Eye, it probably answers your initial question...
 

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jon0844

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Well, they're now doing a good job of destroying a pretty good reputation on the Great Northern route. How is Thameslink doing?
 

TH172341

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Yorkie is completely right - the Gatwick Express brand has suffered even - I still feel the prestige element of the service has never recovered since the axing of the specially designed Class 460s...

The Thameslink franchise is seemingly a poison chalice for operators, and Govia probably, or should have, known that when entering it. Whilst the London Bridge works haven't helped things for GTR, their treatment of the staff has made things far far worse. If you want to get through disruption as smoothly as possible, and to run an effective service, you need your staff onside. It is rather blatant to see that GTR are at the complete opposite end of the spectrum in that respect.

I can't see the franchise stripped off them however - the Government is too preoccupied with other matters at the minute (well, one big matter), and unless they run into financial difficulties or things turn really sour, then I can't see it happening. The 700 introduction may appease some passengers, and things reliability wise should hopefully improve in the future. However staff relations are very weak it seems and will take a lot of work to try and repair...

I think a far bigger repurcussion for Govia is if they fail to retain the West Midlands franchise. That is a real possibility, with some worthy contenders; Abellio have been on the up recently and MTR a very attractive option. The latter certainly considering the fact they successfully delivered the London Overground operation, something that West Midlands Rail will be aiming to replicate.
 
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bramling

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GTR isn't really a brand. The brands are Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express. Southern is a bit tarnished, but has its great historical strength. The others are fine.

This may well be why they have moved away from the common "riband" branding.

Thameslink has always been a brand associated with unreliability and overcrowding in my view.

Agree that the other brands are probably okay, however GTR is definitely becoming the new Connex. Reliability on Great Northern has never been so bad, regardless of what was or wasn't left in order by First, it's clear GTR has a terrible relationship with its staff, performance has badly slipped since FCC finished. I've basically abandoned travelling at weekends now (despite having paid for a season ticket) as the service is now badly unreliable, and it now seems cancellations are occurring in the week too. With the horrible class 700s approaching I don't think I'll be renewing. Things have reached the tipping point where a guaranteed parking space and seat from High Barnet now seems to be the better option to reach London.
 

jon0844

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If GTR is doing the dirty work for the Government/DfT then I assume it is pretty much invincible.

And it has to be said that it was quite clever for GTR not to make much effort to let anyone know who they are. Sure, their details do feature in some places (where legally required) but elsewhere it's just the logos.

People complain about Southern, GN, TL and GatEx and many aren't even aware they're one and the same operator, let alone who that operator is. As such, I don't think GoAhead/GoVia actually has too much to worry about.

A conspiracy theorist could suggest this was a plan all along.
 

47271

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For those on here - and the unions - who demand the return of British Rail, isn't this just a glimpse of what it would look like?
 

jon0844

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For those on here - and the unions - who demand the return of British Rail, isn't this just a glimpse of what it would look like?

I was thinking that, but thought not to say it or by tomorrow this thread will be 500 pages long. :D
 

43074

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For those on here - and the unions - who demand the return of British Rail, isn't this just a glimpse of what it would look like?

... and if British Rail had never been privatised this would have happened years ago, probably when they replaced the slammers with sliding door stock.
 

hairyhandedfool

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....The Thameslink franchise is seemingly a poison chalice for operators, and Govia probably, or should have, known that when entering it....

Govia ran the first Thameslink franchise, they already had Southern and Gatwick Express, so there's very little they won't have known about it.

....Whilst the London Bridge works haven't helped things for GTR, their treatment of the staff has made things far far worse. If you want to get through disruption as smoothly as possible, and to run an effective service, you need your staff onside. It is rather blatant to see that GTR are at the complete opposite end of the spectrum in that respect....

They are doing what the DfT are asking them to do, both those parties are happy because GTR is getting nearly £9m for no real effort and no real concerns and DfT hide behind GTR being the "franchise holder".

....I can't see the franchise stripped off them however - the Government is too preoccupied with other matters at the minute (well, one big matter), and unless they run into financial difficulties or things turn really sour, then I can't see it happening....

They aren't pre-occupied, they won't end it because the DfT don't want the "franchise" to fail. Their manipulation of the targets goes to prove it.

....The 700 introduction may appease some passengers, and things reliability wise should hopefully improve in the future. However staff relations are very weak it seems and will take a lot of work to try and repair....

They have no interest in getting staff relations back, they'll barely have any staff left by the time the contract ends.
 
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southernyoshi

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So to go into full conspiracy mode, is this a trial for all TOCs to follw eventually - provoking a general rail strike which would be unpopular & lay the groundwork for de-unionising the whole industry?
 

ScotGG

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How different is Go ahead's Southeastern franchise? They were supposed to have tough targets when renewed. Havn't met them, reliability not great and yet they seem immune. And I'm not only talking about NR failures or London Bridge work - the reduced initial targets accounted for that.

Mr Horton who led Southeasern now is in charge of sister company GTR.

Connex again perhaps across SE and Southern (plus the rest now)...
 
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