• Interviu

You’re one of the companies that succesfully faced the financial crisis, actually we could say that you came out on top even. What was (and is) the key of this success?
We had restructured our whole activity even before the crisis. Amongst other things, it implied aquiring an application called Enterprise Resource Planning, which helped us obtain clear financial results in real time. We also invested in personnel training and in technology and communications, about the same time our competition was cutting these budgets down. We followed with quick cost control measures and we tied closesly the revenues of our sales team with their results.

The coaches fair best on routes not longer than 1,000 km

Lately, more and more romanians choose to travel by air, opposed to by road. Under these terms, what were your measures in response? I mean, did you give up on routes that didn’t bring much profit? Have you focused on shorter trips?
Of course there are profitable and less profitable routes. The coaches fair best on routes not longer than 1,000 km, that is where they are efficient. Geographically, Romania is further away from Western Europe, so routes for that area are, obviously, longer. We took advantage of the free international transportation system, so we can transport people from station to station, in any country of the EU. Meaning, if before we had a coach from Bucharest to Frankfurt and one from Bucharest to Vienna, now we can merge the two routes and thus obtain a more efficient system. Shorter routes, like Bucharest-Prague-Berlin for example, are indeed he most efficient.

How do you see the low-cost airways influencing your business? What is your reaction to that fact?
It is true that flights in general and especially  the low-cost ones affect the international road transportation. But coaches have their advantages as well: they pass through more cities along the way, they can take more luggage aboard, are ideal for people that suffer from air-sickness, and so on. Though the market is divided, it is pretty clear for everyone to see their percentage of the market.

Germany, the country with the most passangers

Regarding your international activity, for 2012 you had as objectives transporting 10% more passangers than last year and also launching two new routes. Have you managed to achieve thise objectives? Which are the routes with the most passangers?
In 2012 we have achieved all our objectives, both those regarding growth and those regarding opening new routes and new cities. For us, Germany was and still is the country with the most passangers, but also Prague is a key city.

What is your prediction for 2013, from Eurolines’ turnover standpoint, considering that in 2012 you had an increase in not only annual turnover but profit as well?
For 2013 our group has a budget which has increased by 35% from last years. The tourism business has received a 70% increase of budged, but we chose prudency when it cameto the transportation business, which received an increase of only 5%. We aim for an increase of profit by 10%, considering that we are still in investment phase – ten new agencies are set to start their work this year, and three more coaches will be aquired.

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