Veolia Transport

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Veolia Transport
IndustryTransportation Services
PredecessorCompagnie Générale des Eaux
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Founded1876 (1997)
FateMerged with original Transdev
HeadquartersParis, France
Key people
Henri Proglio (Chairman and CEO)
ProductsTransportation as Veolia Transportation
Revenue€6.1 billion EUR (2009)
Number of employees
83,654 (2009)

Veolia Transport (formerly Connex and CGEA Transport) was the international transport services division of the French-based multinational company Veolia until the 2011 merger that gave rise to Veolia Transdev, later renamed to Transdev.[1] Veolia Transport traded under the brand names of Veolia Transportation in North America and Israel, Veolia Transport, Veolia Verkehr in Germany and with the former name Connex preserved in Lebanon, Melbourne (until it ceased operations in 2009) and Jersey (until it ceased operations on 31 December 2012) .

Until 2011, Veolia had diverse road and rail operations across the globe, employing 72,000 workers worldwide and serving completely or partly about 40 metropolitan areas with more than 1,000,000 inhabitants.


CGEA Transport[edit]

The company was established on 1 January 1997 as CGEA Transport, created from the public transport business of Compagnie Générale d'Entreprises Automobiles (CGEA), which was a subsidiary of Compagnie Générale des Eaux (CGE).[2][3]

CGEA was previously acquired by CGE in 1980, and its waste management and environmental services division was already rebranded Onyx Environnement in 1989, leaving CGEA with only the transport business.[3] Compagnie générale française des transports et entreprises (CGFTE) was also acquired by CGE in the 1980s, was also absorbed into CGEA in 1988.[4][5]

Vivendi, Connex and Veolia[edit]

CGE, the ultimate parent company, was later renamed to Vivendi in 1998, and created Vivendi Environnement in 1999 to consolidate its environmental divisions including the transport division. Vivendi Environnement was renamed Veolia Environnement in 2003.

As a result, the name of CGEA Transport was rebranded Connex in 1999, adopting the brand that its South Central and South Eastern rail franchises in South East England had traded under since 1996.[6] In 2005, as a result of global rebranding of all Veolia Environnement subsidiaries, Connex was renamed Veolia Transport.[7][8] Some operations such as Connex Melbourne retained the Connex name and logo.

In 2007, the group posted revenues of €5.6 billion in 2007,[9] and sold Veolia Cargo, the rail freight branch of Veolia Transport in 2009 to SNCF and Eurotunnel.[10]

A merger between Veolia Transport and the old Transdev was announced on 23 July 2009.[11] Transdev was then a subsidiary of Caisse des Dépôts. The merger was completed in March 2011. Veolia Transdev became the world's private-sector leader in sustainable mobility with more than 110,000 employees in 28 countries.[12] Veolia Transdev was renamed and simplified to Transdev in 2013.

In July 2011, amid disappointing financial results, Veolia Environnement announced the launch of new restructuring plans and redeployment of assets and businesses.[13] In December 2011, Veolia announced a €5bn divestment program in 2012 and 2013.[14] As part of this programme, Veolia would divest its participation in Transdev and exit the transport business altogether. In January 2019, Veolia sold the last of its Transdev shares to the Rethmann Group, the owner of Rhenus.[15]



The Bayerische Oberlandbahn near Munich is operated by Veolia.


  • Autocars De Polder has been part of the Veolia Group since 1995.[17]
  • Veolia operated some de Lijn routes under contract.

Veolia Transport Belgium (VTB) was passed on to Veolia Transdev until it was sold to a consortium consisting of Cube Infrastructure and Gimv in March 2014.[18]


These operations were sold to Arriva in October 2007.


A Veolia bus in Helsinki advertising the Hesburger fast-food chain
  • Helsinki: Veolia owns Helsinki Metropolitan Area's bus company Veolia Finland, which was previously Linjebuss and operated essentially in Vantaa, a northern suburb of Helsinki.
  • Tampere: Veolia owns the regional bus company previously known as Alhonen & Lastunen
  • Seinäjoki: Veolia owns yet another local bus company, now known as Veolia Transport West Oy, operating both local and long-distance routes.

Veolia Transport Finland Oy has since been passed on to Transdev and has been known as Transdev Finland Oy since 5 February 2015.[19]


  • Veolia Verkehr, former Connex Verkehr, offers train services, several of a regional character such as the Bayerische Oberlandbahn from Munich, and two long-distance services. Veolia owns a number of bus companies, mostly in suburban areas. It also operated tram systems:
    • Aachen: Suburban buses,
    • Berlin: Suburban tram line linking to the S Bahn,
    • Frankfurt: Urban linepacks A&E, Suburban services,
    • Bad Homburg: Urban & Suburban buses,
    • Hagen: Urban network,
    • Pforzheim: Urban network won by Veolia in August 2006. Network included in "Karlsruher Verkehrsverbund GmbH" (KVV) and linked to it by Tram-Train line,
    • Schwäbisch Hall: Urban network,
    • Stuttgart: Suburban buses,
    • ...and also into rural areas.

Veolia Verkehr has since been passed on to Transdev and is now known as Transdev GmbH since March 2015.[20]


  • Dublin: Veolia operated the Luas tramway which started operations in June 2004. Operation of the Luas tramway has since been passed on to Veolia Transdev and renamed Transdev Ireland.
  • Galway: Veolia owned the Nestor Airlink bus company which operated between Galway and Dublin Airport. However Jim Burke & Sons own and run it as of March 2009.


MyBus Caetano Slimbus bodied Dennis Dart in St Helier in December 2012


Veolia Transport Nederland became part of Transdev in March 2011 and was brought under common ownership with Connexxion to form Transdev Nederland.[24] Both continued to operate independently until June 2015 when both were brought under common management.[25] When the Limburg concession expired on 11 December 2016, the remaining Haaglanden operations were rebranded as Connexxion.[26][27]


On 6 May 2011, Veolia Transport Norge was sold in a management buyout and renamed Boreal Transport Norge AS. The new owners were Transport Management AS (1.4%) (the management) and Cube Norge AS (98.6%), a subsidiary of Cube Communications Infrastructure S.C.A. (Cube Infrastructure Fund) of Luxembourg.[28]



Veolia Transport Sverige AB has since been passed on to Transdev and is now known as Transdev Sverige AB since February 2015.[33]

United Kingdom[edit]

Connex South Central train at Haywards Heath station in 2002
  • Connex South Eastern - A train operator in south-east England that ran from 14 October 1996 to 9 November 2003. The contract was due to run until 2011; but their contract was revoked owing to poor financial management after repeated warnings from Government.[34][35]
  • Connex South Central - A train operator in the south of England that ran from 26 May 1996 until 25 August 2001. Initially their contract was due to run until 2003. In October 2000 the new contract was awarded to Govia. Soon after they and Connex worked out a takeover of the remainder of Connex's contract; starting in August 2001.[36][37][38][39]
  • Connex Bus UK - a bus operator formed in mid 1999 by Connex, operating bus services in greater London. Sold to National Express in 2004 after losing the rail franchises above.[40]
  • Dunn-Line – A National Express contractor. Veolia sold its Nottingham bus and private hire coach operations to Premiere Travel from 31 January 2011; on 6 January 2011, its National Express coach work from the city passed to Yourbus.[41]
  • Veolia Transport Cymru, which purchased the following (ceased by December 2012):
    • Pullman Coaches
    • Bebb Travel – A National Express contractor
    • Shamrock Coaches
    • Hawkes
    • Longs
  • Astons Coaches (Kempsey, Worcester)
  • Paul James Coaches (Taken over by Centrebus in October 2011)
  • Veolia Transport – Running a number of Nexus secured local bus services in Tyne & Wear. Veolia local and sightseeing services in York were taken over by Transdev York in August 2008.[42]

As a result, Veolia Transport had no more operations in UK by the time of Veolia Transdev's rebranding in 2013. However, since the services in York were taken over by Transdev York (part of the old Transdev), they still eventually became part of Veolia Transdev and the current Transdev.

Central Europe[edit]

Veolia Transport Central Europe was a daughter company for Central Europe. It was later passed on to Veolia Transdev and then sold to Arriva in the spring of 2013.[43][44]

Czech Republic[edit]

Connex Praha bus

Veolia Transport was one of the largest bus operators, operated also one regional railway line and one trolleybus network. Main acquisitions carried out (as Connex) in 2002–2004 (ČSAD Ostrava, Třinec, Praha-Vršovice, Příbram, DP Teplice), smaller in 2005 (MAD Kolín), 2008 (Nerabus), 2010 (Spojbus) etc. In summer 2008, it changed its trademark from Connex to Veolia Transport. In 2004–2007, several times competed or offered for passenger railway transport, however have got no new job yet.


  • Nitra: Urban network and bus station.


Veolia transport in Poland - bus Autosan Gemini
  • Veolia owned a number of bus companies and operated an urban network:
    • Tczew: Urban city network.


  • Veolia owned a number of bus companies and operated 2 urban networks:


East Asia (excluding Philippines)[edit]

Veolia Transport's more recent operations in East Asia were operated as a joint venture with RATP Group, known as Veolia Transport RATP Asia (VTRA). It was created in July 2009 and absorbed all existing Veolia Transport operating companies and contracts.[45] Veolia Transport's share has since been passed on to Veolia Transdev, with the joint venture renamed RATP Dev Transdev Asia (RDTA).


Veolia Transport Chinese Limited (VTCL) started a joint venture with Nanjing Zhongbei to operate bus networks in China in 2008. It operates in:

  • Anqing: Anhui province
  • Huaibei : Bus network operated as a joint venture into a city of 2 040 000 inhabitants (932 185 hab. urban in 2006) in Anhui province
  • Huainan : Bus network operated as a joint venture into a city of 1 076 000 inhabitants (1 075 754 hab. urban in 2006) in Anhui province
  • Ma'anshan: Anhui province
  • Nanjing: Suburbs of Luhe and Pukou

It was passed to VTRA upon the latter's creation in 2009.

Hong Kong[edit]



  • Macau: Veolia Transport RATP Dev created Reolian Public Transport Co. to operate buses in Macau. Services began August 1, 2011 and is operating two of five groupings of routes, also to be the more important arterial routes of the city. The joint venture announced filing for bankruptcy on 1 October 2013. The operation was finally terminated in July 2014 and passed on to another operator.

South Korea[edit]


Connex operated the Bonifacio Transport Corporation in the Philippines in the early 2000s.[48] It is unknown when exactly did Connex stop operating the bus services.


Light Rail[edit]

  • Jerusalem: Veolia won a $500 million contract in 2003 to build and maintain the Jerusalem Light Rail system, which will comprise eight lines running across the city. It is expected to be completed by 2020. The first line, from Pisgat Ze'ev to Beit HaKerem, began operation in 2011. Due to the controversial nature of the project, Veolia became a target of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign.[49] In September 2009, the company considering selling its share in the project to the Dan Bus Company for $15–20 million.[50] In October 2010, it agreed to sell its stake to Egged instead. As a result, Dan sued Veolia.[51] After the operation was passed on to Veolia Transdev, the sale to Egged was finally approved in August 2015.[52]


Veolia operates buses in Israel under Veolia Transportation brand. It used to operate with both the Veolia Transportation brand and the Connex brand together in the late 2000s.[53] They operate:

In 2012, Denis Gasquet, Veolia's senior executive vice president, visited Israel, where the company has reached a turnover of 1.5 billion shekels a year. After 20 years of investment in the country, Gasquet said the company had never lost a tender due to its commitment to Israel. Despite operational hitches, Veolia stated that there were no political problems with the Arabs or the Jews, and the company was "not ashamed to say that we make money in Israel."[54]

After these operations was passed on to Veolia Transdev, the buses in Modi'in were sold to Kavim in July 2013,[55] while the rest were sold to Afikim in September 2013.[56]



Veolia Transport NSW Volgren bodied Volvo B10L in Sydney, Australia in July 2013
Transperth Transdev Volgren Optimus Volvo B8RLEA.


Connex changed its name to the same as its French parent company's, Veolia, in January 2006. Branding on buses and trains was changed to reflect this position, with the exception of Connex Melbourne. Turnover for Australia was over A$635 million.

With the exception of Connex Melbourne, the other Veolia Transport operations have since been passed on to Veolia Transdev and grouped to form its Australasian subsidiary Transdev Australasia (together with Veolia Auckland and old Transdev).

Between August 2001 and 2003, Connex also briefly owned 50% of West Coast Railway which operated services between Melbourne and Warrnambool.[66][67]

New Caledonia[edit]

New Zealand[edit]

Veolia Transport Auckland has since been passed on to Veolia Transdev and grouped with Veolia Transport and old Transdev's Australian operations to form Transdev Australasia.

North America[edit]

Veolia Transportation was the North American business unit of Veolia Transport[69] It has since been passed on to Transdev and renamed Transdev North America in 2014.


In April 2005 Veolia were awarded the contract in York Region in suburban Toronto, Ontario, Canada running the bus rapid transit (BRT) naming the routes VIVA and joining with York Region Transit (YRT) as a one fare transit system.[70]

Veolia also operated transit services in the Greater Montreal Area.

United States[edit]

Connex arrived in the United States in 2001, with the acquisition of Yellow Transportation in Baltimore, Maryland.[71][72] On September 1, 2005, Connex acquired ATC from National Express, making Connex-ATC the largest privately owned public transportation company in North America.[73] ATC was formed in 1951 and originally owned bus companies before becoming a contractor.[74] In 2006, Connex-ATC changed its name to Veolia Transportation, acquired ShuttlePort, and won several contracts in the US, including:

Veolia employed over 16,000 employees with 6,500 vehicles and a revenue of over $1 billion. in 2005 in North America. Its executive team included Mark Joseph (CEO of VTNA). It was headquartered in Oak Brook, Illinois.

Veolia also owns the Supershuttle shared-ride airport shuttle service, as well as the ExecuCar black car/sedan service. Veolia also operated taxicab services across the country under various brands.

South America[edit]


  • Santiago: Veolia owned Redbus Urbano, which operated feeder services to the Metro and "Troncales" in northern suburban Santiago. This operation has since been passed on to Transdev.


  • Bogotá: Veolia, in conjunction with three other operators, ran a 90 km right-of-way bus line called the TransMilenio system, used by more than 1,400,000 persons a day. This has since been passed on to Transdev.


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External links[edit]