Competition Commission report on First / Greater Western

Competition Commission final report (47 pages, PDF) finding that First's acquisition of the Greater Western passenger rail franchise would not lead to a substantial lessening of competition. The Commission found that there were a number of routes on which there was a loss of competition (compared to the relevant counterfactual) between bus and rail services. On some of these routes, the Commission's modelling indicated a profit incentive for First to raise bus fares or reduce bus frequencies. But "the profit incentive is not in [the Commission's] view sufficient to lead FirstGroup to adopt a strategy of raising fares or reducing frequencies especially given the uncertainties as to the shorter- and longer-term effects of doing so". The estimated profit incentives are not disclosed in the published report but are described as being "below £40,000". The Commission has also published a set of appendices.

For further information or advice please contact Franck Latrémolière.

Filed under Competition Commission, Public transport.

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