The 15-year deal, which includes an option of a further 7-year extension, will enable ALSA to expand its services in the North African Kingdom. The transportation company, which will operate 500 buses in the cities of Rabat, Salé and Temara, is expected to carry 109 million passengers a year across 61 routes.
ALSA will operate as the majority shareholder of a joint venture with CityBus, a local transport company.
Commenting the deal, Mr. Dean Finch, National Express Group Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted we have secured this major new bus contract in Morocco. We have been steadily growing our presence in Morocco as part of our strategy to expand in rapidly growing urban areas, helping to diversify our earnings.”
“It is particularly pleasing that our track record for service excellence in Morocco played a significant part in this successful bid. We hope to build on this success and secure further expansion in the coming years”, he added.
After winning this major contract, ALSA becomes the largest transport operator in Morocco. ALSA’s first Moroccan contract was awarded in 1999 – managing urban transport in Marrakech.
Other cities were subsequently added: Agadir (2010), Tangier (2013) and Khourigba (2015). With a fleet of 1000 buses, ALSA’s Moroccan business employs 3,600 people.
National Express Group has been significantly growing its international presence in recent years. It operates in America and Europe. In North America, National Express runs nearly 25,000 vehicles in the school bus, transit, para-transit and employee shuttle markets.
In Spain, National Express is the largest public transport operator, with around 2,500 buses and coaches, carrying around 159 million passengers a year.
Since 2015, National Express has also entered two new markets: Germany and Switzerland.