The AATS Group, owners of SkyBus airport transit bus services, is set to become one of Australia’s largest bus operators with the purchase of Queensland and New South Wales multi-service operator Transit Australia Group (TAG).
AATS Group today announced it had successfully entered into contractual arrangements to purchase TAG, which employs more than 1600 people and operates more than 630 buses throughout Queensland and New South Wales.
TAG provides a combination of Government-contracted metropolitan route, school bus, regional route, general charter and event bus services. The purchase by AATS Group for an undisclosed amount has been contractually agreed after completion of a sale process run by UBS on behalf of the vendors.
When finalised the transaction will cement AATS Group as one of Australia’s largest bus operators, building on its operation of SkyBus which transports more than five million people a year on 15 routes to five airports across Australia and New Zealand.
Having successfully developed SkyBus into a world leading and award-winning airport transit bus operation, the TAG acquisition realises a strategic priority for AATS Group as it seeks to widen its bus network operations further.
“On behalf of AATS Group we are truly excited and proud to be the new owners of TAG which is considered by many as an iconic part of the Queensland public transport network,” AATS Group Co-CEO Michael Sewards said.
“With this acquisition AATS Group will operate the SkyBus, Surfside and Sunbus brands, all aligned in their focus on continuous improvement and excellence in customer experience,” Mr Sewards said.
“AATS Group looks forward to further investment in the long-term growth of the TAG business and wishes to thank the Calabro family for their valuable contribution to the Australian bus industry,” AATS Group Co-CEO Adam Begg said.
“We are very excited about the TAG acquisition which fits perfectly with the AATS Group’s strategy of acquiring and investing in high quality and well-managed businesses in Queensland which is a very attractive place to invest in due to its modern, high growth and diversified economy,” AATS Group Director and OPTrust Managing Director Stan Kolenc said.
AATS Group is majority owned by OPTrust (www.optrust.com), a Canadian Pension Fund with over $20 billion in funds under investment and minority interests held by management. Subject to regulatory approval, it is expected that completion of this transaction will occur prior to June 2019.