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Using her father's redundancy money, and working with her brother Sir Brian Souter and her husband Robin Gloag, Gloag established the Stagecoach Group in 1980, running buses from Dundee to London. Expansion continued and in the early 1990s, Stagecoach acquired National Bus Company operations in Cumberland, Hampshire, East Midlands, Ribble, Southdown and the United Counties. Stagecoach bought further bus operations in Scotland, Newcastle and London, with Manchester being added a few years later. In 1993, Stagecoach was valued at £134 million and was floated on the London Stock Exchange in order to access more capital for new opportunities for buses and trains for overseas expansion. The company went on to diversify with trains and trams and expanded overseas — especially into the United States and Canada. They initially offered sandwiches (provided by her and her mother), blankets, and tea. Her involvement in Stagecoach has diminished in recent years, although she remains a non-executive director.
Other business interests
Gloag also has investments outside Stagecoach Group with her brother, including bus builder Alexander Dennis (through her Highland & Universal Investments company) and a chain of petrol stations and other property interests through a shareholding in Moncrieffe Holdings. She was also an investor in Cambridge-based regional airline Scot Airways but sold this shareholding on 18 September 2006. On 29 November 2013 she took ownership of Manston Airport.
Gloag now devotes a significant amount of her time to charity interests and has her own charitable foundations and charity projects, including Kenya Children's Home and Freedom From Fistula Foundation, as well as supporting Mercy Ships and Opportunity International. She was appointed OBE in the 2004 New Year Honours for her services to charity. In 2009, Ann was admitted into the Order of the Star of Africa with the grade of Commander, in recognition of her support for the people and the country of Liberia. She also received the inaugural Susan B. Anthony Humanitarian Award from the National Council of Women of the United States at the United Nations in 2010 and the Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kil Medal in 2011. She is a past winner of the Businesswoman of the Year Award, European Women in Achievement Award and has won a Great Scot Award for her work with Mercy Ships. In 2005 Edinburgh Napier University awarded her an honorary doctorate. In honour of her late son she runs a charitable school in Nairobi, Kenya, the Jonathan Gloag Academy.
Gloag has owned Beaufort Castle near Inverness since 1995, and Kinfauns Castle, near Perth since 2004. She has attempted to block off private access at Kinfauns in a high profile case. On 12 June 2007 she was successful in gaining a court ruling that she was legally entitled to bar the public from a swath of woodland in the grounds of Kinfauns Castle.
- The Scotsman
- "Tycoon launches court access bid". BBC News. 2 June 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- Ramblers Association - Scotland - Index
- Courier News Story
- Carrell, Severin (2007-06-14). "Multimillionaire uses financial muscle to bar ramblers from woods". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2007-06-14.
- BBC News 6 December 2007
- "Saturday Profile: Brian Souter". The Scotsman. 2002-02-02. Retrieved 2013-11-08.
- "Tayside Police launch abuse handling investigation". The Scotsman. 21 November 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2012.