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Strong performance from a changing NSB Group

Geir Isaksen. Foto: Mads KristiansenNSB CEO Geir Isaksen. Photo: Mads Kristiansen

In 2016, the NSB Group delivers one of its best results ever.

“This is particularly satisfactory in a year marked by major restructuring, and shows that we are able to deliver excellent customer experience whilst being in the middle of a major change process,” says CEO Geir Isaksen.

Good results for train and bus

The NSB Group presents an operating profit of NOK 1 740 million in 2016. A significant part of the result is created in the businesses that this year will be demerged from NSB as a result of railway reform: ROM Eiendom, the train maintenance company Mantena,  Materiellselskapet that owns passenger rolling stock, and the sales and ticket company Entur.

Operating profit in passenger rail operations was 636 MNOK. The result is affected by a total of 542 MNOK in restructuring costs, which means that the underlying business operations are stronger than the result suggests.

Nettbuss delivers an operating profit of NOK 306 million. It is the best result ever, and is a consequence of several years of significant improvement.

More and more satisfied customers

The number of train journeys in Norway and Sweden was in 2016 at the same level as 2015, with 72.3 million journeys. Train journeys in Norway has over the past five years increased by 29 percent. Satisfied customers are key to the significant growth.

“It is motivating to see that customer satisfaction has risen steadily in recent years, and that more and more people choose to travel by train. In addition, our reputation is strengthened. In 2016, NSB was awarded the Ipsos reputation prize in recognition of a steady improvement over several years,” says Isaksen.

The good Nettbuss results are also closely connected with satisfied customers.

“Nettbuss customer satisfaction is high.  In 2016, our Swedish bus company Nettbuss Bus4You had the most satisfied travelers in the transport sector for the sixth consecutive year. Punctuality and quality is important for all who travel by bus, and we are working continuously to improve in these areas. But bus driver's attitude, driving style and friendliness also affect passengers,” says Isaksen.

Tough competition in the rail freight market

Operating profit for CargoNet ended at minus 2 million, mostly caused by tough competition in the freight transport market and negative effects of the train driver strike last autumn.

It is environmentally friendly to transport freight by rail, and the government wants to move freight from road to rail.

“It is important that rail freight is given a regulatory framework that will encourage companies to send their goods by rail instead of road, and taxes must not be introduced hindering this development. We believe in the growth of rail freight, and CargoNet is expanding in Sweden, and recently introduced a new direct route to Skåne,” says Isaksen.

A new NSB Group emerges

“Today is the last time we present the results for the old NSB Group and the first time we present the results for the new. Although restructuring is demanding for our Group and tough for many employees who are in the midst of it, we are motivated by the competition and the ambitions in the railway reform. We will work smarter and create even better customer experiences,” says Isaksen, adding:

“Going forward, we will develop the NSB Group as a transport group with solid foundations. The new NSB Group will be developed with the business areas passenger rail operations, bus, freight and tourism.”

Published: 13.02.2017, 12:00