Abellio (transport company)

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Abellio Transport Holding BV
Industry Public transport
Founded 2001; 16 years ago (2001)
(as NedRailways)
Headquarters Utrecht, Netherlands
Area served
The Netherlands
United Kingdom
Czech Republic
Key people
Jeff Hoogesteger (CEO)
Parent Nederlandse Spoorwegen
Website www.abellio.com

Abellio operates public transport services in Europe, with both bus and rail networks. It was founded as NedRailways in 2001, before being renamed Abellio in October 2009. Abellio is the international arm of the Dutch national rail operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen.

The Netherlands[edit]

Abellio is the owner of bus company Qbuzz which operates buses in the provinces of Groningen, Drenthe and Utrecht. Qbuzz also has a minority share in HTM Personenvervoer.

In February 2015 Abellio won the contract of the Province of Limburg to provide for the entire public transport (buses and 4 regional rail lines) from 2016 up to 2031. Due to unfair behavior of Abellio during the tender for the contract, the contract was withdrawn, while the company Arriva received the contract.[1] Abellio had obtained secret information of competitor Veolia through a former employee of Veolia which was hired by the daughter company of Abellio, Qbuzz.[2]

From 2016 Abellio will operate the railway line between Gouda and Alphen aan den Rijn.


Main article: Abellio Deutschland

Abellio operates regional railway lines in several German states as well as owning bus companies throughout Germany, through Abellio Deutschland.


In November 2013, Transport Scotland announced that Abellio, Arriva, FirstGroup, MTR Corporation and National Express had been shortlisted to bid for the new ScotRail franchise. In October 2014, the franchise was awarded to Abellio.

In April 2015, Abellio ScotRail commenced operating the ScotRail franchise.[3][4][5]

On 6 September 2015, Abellio ScotRail commenced operating services on the Borders Railway.


A pair of Abellio Surrey Dennis Darts at Byfleet depot in November 2009
Abellio Greater Anglia train from London to Norwich calls at Ipswich station in June 2014


Abellio entered the UK bus market in May 2009 purchasing the Travel London and Travel Surrey businesses from National Express and rebranding them Abellio London and Abellio Surrey in October 2009.[6] Both operate in the South East of the United Kingdom.


Abellio have a 50% shareholding in Serco-Abellio that has bid for a number of UK rail franchises, operating the Merseyrail franchise since July 2003[7] and the Northern Rail franchise from December 2004 until March 2016.[8] Serco-Abellio also lodged unsuccessful bids for the Wales & Borders, West Midlands and Tyne & Wear Metro franchises.

Abellio have also bid for a number of franchises in their own right, lodging bids for the South Western franchise (in partnership with FirstGroup), London Overground, South Central, InterCity West Coast, Essex Thameside, Thameslink Southern & Great Northern and Northern franchises.[9][10][11]

In February 2012, Abellio Greater Anglia commenced operating the Greater Anglia franchise.[12] In 2016, Abellio successfully bid to retain the renamed East Anglia franchise until 2025.[13] In January 2017, Abellio announced that subject to gaining Department for Transport approval, it had agreed to sell a 40% stake in the business to Mitsui.[14]

In April 2016, the Department for Transport announced an Abellio/East Japan Railway Company/Mitsui consortium had been shortlisted to bid for the London Midland franchise with the franchise due to be awarded in June 2017. The successful operator will begin services in October 2017 "with East Japan Railway and Mitsui as minority partners".[15]

Czech Republic[edit]

Abellio bought Probo Bus and run its network in the Czech Republic in 2009. It consisted of regional bus transport in the Beroun District and surroundings and some long-distance bus lines between Prague and South and West Bohemia.

Abellio CZ founded in July 2011 is a Czech daughter of Abellio Transport CZ Holding B.V. Since 1 April 2011, their member of board is Petr Moravec, formerly general manager of Veolia Transport Česká republika and manager of personal transport of Czech Railways (ČD). In spring 2012, Abellio CZ lodged an extensive complaint about wrong assignment of the tender to running of fast train line Ostrava – Krnov – Olomouc. The complaints were completely rejected.

In November 2013, Abellio sold Abellio CZ and Probo Bus to Deutsche Bahn with 110 buses.[16]


  1. ^ "Provincie Limburg - Provincie kiest voor Arriva". www.limburg.nl. Retrieved 2015-06-02. 
  2. ^ "Limburg gunt concessie openbaar vervoer aan Arriva". Retrieved 2015-06-02. 
  3. ^ Dutch firms wins ScotRail franchise from FirstGroup BBC News 8 October 2014
  4. ^ Abellio awarded ScotRail franchise Railway Gazette 8 October 2014
  5. ^ Abellio awarded contract to operate Scotland's National Railway, ScotRail Abellio
  6. ^ National Express Group plc agreement to sell Travel London[dead link] National Express Group 21 May 2009
  7. ^ Merseyrail franchise goes Dutch The Telegraph 24 April 2003
  8. ^ Serco-NedRailways Announced as Preferred Bidder for new Northern Rail franchise Strategic Rail Authority 1 July 2004
  9. ^ Short Listed Bidders for Greater Anglia and InterCity West Coast Rail Franchises Archived March 28, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. Department for Transport 24 March 2011
  10. ^ Bidders to oversee improvements on rail franchises announced Department for Transport 29 March 2012
  11. ^ Shortlist for Northern and TransPennine operators revealed Department for Transport 19 August 2014
  12. ^ Greater Anglia rail franchise announcement Department for Transport 20 October 2011
  13. ^ Better journeys for rail passengers and boost for Derby train industry as new East Anglia franchise announced Department for Transport 10 August 2016
  14. ^ Abellio to sell 40% stake in Greater Anglia to Mitsui Railway Gazette International 17 January 2017
  15. ^ http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/passenger/single-view/view/east-japan-railway-on-west-midlands-franchise-shortlist.html
  16. ^ Deutsche Bahn purchases Czech companies from Abellio Deutsche Bahn 29 November 2013

External links[edit]