National express is a rider bearer straight runing in the United Kingdom, North America and Spain. As these are rather different economic systems, it is of import to understand the chief issues in each of them, because, more or less, they all shape the working conditions and environment of this company. In order non to do this essay based on economic sciences in excessively detail, I shall discourse the markets as one and merely stress chief indexs. I would besides wish to advert that, as National Express is a supplier of public conveyance, its demand is really dependent on society ‘s public assistance. It means that if we want to calculate or explicate some alterations, apprehension of economic conditions is important.

Whichever economic system we look into, concern rhythms have a double consequence on public conveyance market. When there is a recession, as it is now, people tend to care more about their disbursals, and abandon or cut down consuming/using all unneeded pieces of engineering, including the chief challenger of public conveyance – autos. As a considerable proportion of vehicles are bought for more convenient going to work, stores, friends, in difficult times at that place appears a tendency to utilize cheaper public conveyance alternatively. On the other manus, in the wellness of the economic system people ( allow us non bury they are clients ) tendency to pass more on vacations and traveling, what besides includes a demand for public conveyance: rail services ( intercity travel ) , coachs ( e.g. sightseeing ) etc. It is difficult to state which of these inclinations is more powerful and to what extent, but it is clear that in different times they counterbalance one another.

Disposable income, GDP tendencies and Unemployment

These three factors are interior parts of Business rhythms. They create a concatenation reaction, which straight affects the demand for the services of National Express and other public bearers. Let us take an illustration resembling current state of affairs. If GDP goes down, so does the production. Traveling on, if the production is reduced, some workers are no longer necessary and are laid off – degree of unemployment rises. Following, as figure of workers/workload psychiatrists, less wage is dsitributed, so aggregative income falls, as does disposable income. This leads to increasing consciousness of salvaging and ( as I said before ) cheaper goods and services are preferred, in this instance public conveyance instead than private. In instance GDP goes up, everything would go on frailty versa: increased income would take to higher affordability of autos and other more expensive agencies of single conveyance.

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Socio-cultural issues

It is difficult to compare what shapes the environment of National Express more – economic state of affairs or societal issues. As mark consumers of any public conveyance is lower and in-between categories, in other words – bulk of people, cultural attitude and societal conditions of the society make a considerable influence.

Lifestyle differences

The demand for rider bearers depends on attitude towards public conveyance in general, and this well depends on the degree of cultural consciousness. It may sound pathetic but if there is a finding that public conveyance is low-prestige concern neither investing in substructure nor good service can pull adequate clients. If we compare markets of Denmark and Russia, we would detect similar instance. In first, there is a tendency that important proportion of population necessitating some transposing prefer environmentally-friendly agencies of conveyance – traveling on pes, bike, public conveyance and in conclusion autos. It reflects the Denmark ‘s civilization and policy towards climate alteration. In Russia, through public conveyance is explicated rather good, people tend to utilize it merely when they can non take private. This alludes that the success of public bearers is under influence of cultural mentality.

Population demographics

The addition in population makes a positive consequence on the demand for public conveyance. It is particularly easy to detect this in metropolitan metropoliss. If we take London, for illustration, it is really easy to understand that a metropolis without developed system of public conveyance would turn into a catastrophe. Now well-explicate transposing services enable citizens to populate in suburbs, Greater London, and still be able to hold a occupation at the Centre of the metropolis, what ( due to intensive traffic ) without public conveyance would be impossible of purposeless.

Environmental issues

As more and more accent throughout the universe is placed on ecology, pollution, energy salvaging etc. , these issues are going progressively of import in many markets, particularly in fabrication and transit. I will summarisethe issues briefly, because I do non believe they are of equal importance as economic or cultural issues, but will decidedly go more relevant in the hereafter.

Energy ingestion

This is the most complicated challenge for the National Express. Though there are formal and informal duties and grounds to cut down the energy ingestion, in pattern it is barely possible for a few obstructions. One of them is that new engines with lower C emanations are less fuel-economic, doing their baseline costs lifting. Following job is that new engineerings, such as electric or diesel-hybrid engines for coachs are still under development and are non to be introduced to production for a few old ages. National Express name those as major jobs which will surely take high attempt to get the better of.

Environmental statute law

The chief technique used in transit concern is coachs, managers and trains, which emit CO2 and other harmful gases, and devour different sorts of fuel on regular footing, every bit good. Therefore it is natural that there are many statute law which must be followed. Voluntarily or non, National Express Group shows societal duty by taking this into consideration and doing many promotions ( Fig. 2 ) in order to make an image of a climate-aware company.


Having identified and discussed the chief environmental influences, I suggest that they are helpful to explicate the changes in the demand of public services. Unfortunately, there is nil a company can make to impact economic state of affairs or order environmental watercourses. However, the manner National Express could act upon and profit from environmental forces is analyzing cultural issues. I believe that understanding society ‘s characteristics and demands can be an underlying rock sing new markets ‘ chances.

National Express – Selling


The market of public conveyance harmonizing to graduated table can be divided into a few chief sections ( see Fig. 4 ) , which may somewhat depend on geografical state of affairs of the state but are more or less the same all over the universe. In this essay I shall look into and discourse targeting of National Express and seek to compare or contrast it with one of its challengers – FirstGroup.


As I have mentioned before, National Express operates in multi-country environment, so in order to analyze the company it is necessary to look into if the targeted sections are the same. I would besides wish to detect that because of the fact that Portugal, Spain and Morocco are served by one partner/subbrand company – Alsa ( based in Spain ) , I will discourse these states as one individual market.

North America

In US and Canada National Express has targeted wholly different sections from those in EU ( to be discussed subsequently ) – school coach services. Though at a first glimpse it may look as a little and nonmeaningful market, it is surely non. In the US, the company operates in 29 provinces, has a fleet transcending 15,500 vehicles and serves over 300 schools[ 1 ]. This is the 3rd most profitable section ( after UK rail services and UK coach services ) of National Express Group, go forthing managers and Spain sections behind[ 2 ]. It is difficult to judge its hereafter, though, because despite the fact that its comparative turnover is non so high, there works about half of National Express staff[ 3 ].


Targeting this state is an illustration of a failure which National Express experienced while come ining a new market. Ten old ages ago, in 1999, the company gained three franchises ( M & gt ; train, M & gt ; tram and V/Line Passenger ) as a portion of a program to come in the market of Australian public conveyance. The sections targeted were suburbian rail services, tram web and manager services in Victoria. However, 5 old ages subsequently due to fiscal troubles these companies were sold and National Express retreated from the market.


After neglecting in Australia, following market targeted by the company was Spain, and so far successful. In 2005 National Express bought a greater portion of private Spanish operator ALSA. To my head, the move succeeded because a reasonable mark market ( two markets, in fact ) was chosen – manager operations in Pyrenes peninsula ( Spain and Portugal ) and Morocco and long-distance international manager services in Europe. Other operations ( South America and China ) were left to their old proprietors. I justify such scheme of tarageting because ( in footings of cultural issues ) the sections are rather similar and, every bit good, differ greatly from the markets of South America and China. Though it is difficult to claim anything without back uping my statements with statistical studies, I am convinced that holding taken the remainder operations of Alsa without thorough researches would hold put National Express in a disruptive state of affairs.

United kingdom

This is a place market for National Express. As the company originated here, it is natural that it has a sensible competetive advantage, particularly in England. At current clip National Express has rather a few mark markets, including all sections and about all subsegments ( Fig. 4 ) . It operates coach, manager, ropeway and rail services, which could besides be segmented harmonizing to the country. However, in a latter manner, we can non claim that National Express has a dominant place across all the state. It has a major portion of cardinal parts ‘ markets ( London, West Midlands etc. ) but Scotland, Wales and East England are controlled by chief NE ‘s rival – FirstGroup.


This company, though founded a decennary subsequently, is the strongest and most powerful challenger of National Express in the market of coach and train services. The fact that adjusted operating net income for this company rose by 38,9 % in 2008[ 4 ]amplifies its house and healthy province. ( It is a commiseration that I can non compare these consequences as at the clip of composing National Express has non published its one-year studies yet. ) . Anyhow, these companies have many things in common. In UK, they are both dominant public conveyance suppliers in their parts ( Scotland, East and West England against Central England and London ) . What is more, whether it is a happenstance or non, both National Express and FirstGroup have targeted the same market in the US – school coach section. However, in add-on to that, FirstGroup has a few more divisions at that place: it provides cargo theodolite and autos care services, and, most significantly, is the lone national provider of scheduled intercity coach transit services[ 5 ]. One more similarity – in 2004 FristGroup besides had some jobs and sold two subordinates: First North Western and First Great Eastern ( in fact, to National Express ) . Finally, both of the companies have targeted some Continental EU states ‘ markets as rider bearers, but have no intersection, at least yet.


I identified and discussed the sections that National Express is presently aiming. This background lets me do more or less expressed image of company ‘s current place as a rider bearer in UK, North America and Spain. As I see it, the chief drawback of this analysis is that I cound non acquire the full information of fiscal public presentation in the twelvemonth 2008, because due to planetary recession it is inappropriate to presume that last twelvemonth ‘s tendencies would go on in the same mode. Therefore I find it difficult to calculate the distribution of gross and market portions in the sections targeted. To parallel Natonal Express with rivals, its overall superior appears healthy, though in order to derive market portion and to catch up with its chief rival – FirstGroup – it is non plenty merely to prolong the competetive advantage in the sections the company already has. New ways, agencies and countries should be ever under consideration, paying particular attending to the US.


Figure 1

Chief Means of Transportation to Work in US







( 1000s )



( 1000s )



( 1000s )

All workers


100.0 %


100.0 %








A Drives ego






A Carpool






A A 2-person






A A 3-person






A A 4+ individual






Public transportation1












Bicycle or bike






Walks merely






Other means2






Plants at place






Note: Chief agencies of transit refers to the manner used most frequently.

1. Public transit refers to bus, tram, subway, or elevated trains.

2. Other agencies include ferryboats, surface trains, and van service.

From: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, American Housing Survey ( Washington, DC: assorted old ages ) .

Figure 2

Key high spots and promotions made by National Express this twelvemonth:

6 % lessening in fleet energy usage at National Express East Anglia

Introduction of regenerative braking at c2c taking to a 20 % decrease in electricity usage

29 % lessening in energy use at our West Midlands Travel coach garages, and a entire lessening of 37 % over three old ages

Train terminal energy ingestion lessening of 25 % over the last two old ages

Becoming the first UK conveyance group to exchange to green duty electricity. All the energy we use across our 300 sites, including Stationss, care installations and offices is now renewably sourced. The contract besides provides electricity for the Midland Metro in the West Midlands, ensuing in the line going the first visible radiation rail system in the UK to be efficaciously emission free.

Founder member of the ‘Together ‘ Campaign, an exciting coaction with other concerns and NGO ‘s with the mark of salvaging a metric ton of C in every family in the UK. Working jointly, the run seeks to offer solutions to consumers to promote sustainable behaviors alteration

Engagement in the WWF ‘s One Planet Business Coalition helped beef up our relationship with other cardinal concerns concerned with undertaking clime alteration

From: hypertext transfer protocol: //

Figure 3

National Express and its chief rivals:


Operating States

Gross 2007 ( mln. ? )

Operating Net income 2007 ( mln. ? )

First Group

UK, Ireland, Germany, Canada, US, Denmark



National Express

UK, US, Canada, Portugal, Spain, Morroco, Australia



Arriva Group

Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, ,Italy, Chack Republic, Sweden, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, UK



Stagecoach Group

UK, US, Canada



Comfort DelGro

Singapore, China, UK, Ireland, Australia, Vietnam, Malaysia

1116 ( $ 2231 )[ 6 ]

129 ( $ 184 )


France, UK, Australia, Portugal, Spain, Nrtherlands, Germany, Canada Italy



Figure 4

Main sections and subsegments of public conveyance sector




City coach ; School coach ; Metro/Subway ; Taxi/Cab


Express managers ; Rural managers ; Airport managers ; Rail ; Cargo


Long distance express managers ; Rail ; Ferry ; Cargo etc.


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