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Red Busapplication to acquire Leopard Coachlines


Media Release

Issued 25 July 2002-03/018

Commerce Commission declines Red Bus
application to acquire Leopard Coachlines

The Commerce Commission has declined an application from Red Bus Limited acquire up to 100% of the shares or assets of Leopard Coachlines Limited.

Commission Chair John Belgrave said the Commission could not be satisfied that the acquisition would not lead to a substantial lessening of competition within the market for the rights to operate scheduled, subsidised bus passenger services in Christchurch and Timaru.

The Commission’s written decision on the application will be available soon on the Commission’s website, www.comcom.govt.nz/adjudication.

Background
Red Bus is a wholly owned subsidiary of Christchurch City Holdings Limited, which is a Local Authority Trading Entity owned by the Christchurch City Council. Christchurch City Holdings also owns shares in the Orion Group, Lyttleton Port Company and Christchurch International Airport.

Red Bus and Leopard both operate various bus routes in the Christchurch and surrounding areas under contracts granted by Environment Canterbury, the Canterbury Regional Council. In addition, Leopard operates school bus, charter, ski field and in-bound tourism services under contracts. Red Bus intends to merge Leopard’s urban bus route business with its own existing business.

Leopard entered the urban bus market in 1995. It has always had a major interest in the tourism market and now wishes to focus entirely on that market.

ENDS

Commission media releases can be viewed on its web site www.comcom.govt.nz

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