February 5, 2018 / 6:05 PM / in 5 months

BRIEF-Stagecoach Updates On Various Rail Franchising Contracts

Feb 5 (Reuters) - STAGECOACH GROUP PLC:

* RAIL FRANCHISING UPDATE

* ‍NOTES STATEMENT BY UK SECRETARY OF STATE FOR TRANSPORT TODAY REGARDING RAIL FRANCHISING MATTERS​

* ‍VIRGIN RAIL GROUP (“VRG”), HAVE AGREED A NEW WEST COAST RAIL FRANCHISE TO RUN FROM 1 APRIL 2018 UNTIL POTENTIALLY 31 MARCH 2020​

* ‍STAGECOACH SUBSIDIARY HAS BEEN SHORTLISTED TO BID FOR NEXT COMPETITIVELY TENDERED EAST MIDLANDS FRANCHISE, CURRENTLY PLANNED TO BEGIN IN AUG. 2019​

* ‍DFT WILL CONTINUE TO EXPLORE ENTERING INTO NEW COMMERCIAL TERMS WITH VIRGIN TRAINS EAST COAST ON CONTINUED OPERATION OF EAST COAST FRANCHISE

* ‍OUTCOME OF ONGOING TALKS BETWEEN VTEC, DFT MIGHT RESULT IN FURTHER CASH AND NON-CASH EXPOSURES IN CO’S FINANCIALS OVER THOSE ACCOUNTED FOR​

* ‍OUTCOME COULD RESULT, ALL OTHER THINGS BEING EQUAL, IN CO’S CONSOLIDATED NON-RAIL NET DEBT BEING UP TO AROUND £19M HIGHER THAN PREVIOUSLY FORECAST​

* CO IS ALSO ANNOUNCING TODAY THAT IT INTENDS ALSTOM TO JOIN THAT SHORTLISTED BID, SUBJECT TO RECEIVING FORMAL CONSENT FROM DFT​

* ‍VRG HAS NOW AGREED A NEW WEST COAST FRANCHISE WITH DFT; WILL COMMENCE ON 1 APRIL 2018, RUN POTENTIALLY UNTIL 31 MARCH 2020​

* ‍VRG EXPECTS TO MAKE A MODEST PROFIT MARGIN UNDER FRANCHISE​

* ‍VIRGIN TRAINS EAST COAST IS PURSUING CLAIMS AGAINST NETWORK RAIL FOR SUSTAINED POOR PERFORMANCE​

* ‍DFT IS NOW SEEKING, STAGECOACH AND VIRGIN FUND AN AMOUNT RELATING TO PERFORMANCE BOND OUTSTANDING IN RESPECT OF VIRGIN TRAINS EAST COAST​

* ‍TO EXTENT AGREED, IT COULD RESULT IN A FURTHER NET CASH OUTFLOW OF UP TO AROUND £19M FROM CO TO VTEC OR DFT OVER AMOUNTS ALREADY ASSUMED​ Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

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