Arriva from Osijek takes over Autotrans from Cres

The Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) approved the concentration between the undertakings Arriva from Osijek and Autotrans from Cres. The undertakings concerned are active in the scheduled bus transport market (transportation of passengers) on county and cross-county lines in Croatia and on international lines from Croatia.

The core activity of the company Arriva, specifically of Panturist that is under its control, is passenger transportation by bus but the company is also engaged in the provision of tourist and travel agency services and also manages one bus station in Đakovo. Deutsche Bahn from Berlin has indirect control over Arriva through a number of its connected undertakings. Arriva has a network of some 300 domestic transport lines and regular international lines.

On the other hand, Autotrans group is the market leader in the bus transportation market in Croatia with a network of some 500 lines in the Croatian market and abroad, it provides travel agency’s services and owns and manages 15 bus stations.

Based on the data from the notification and other findings of the CCA the concentration was found compatible given the fact that it has been assessed that the transaction would not have significant effects on competition in the provision of scheduled road transport services. The post-merger share of Arriva will be 20 % to 25 % whereas the competitive constraint will remain. What is more, the concentration will ensure better coverage of the whole Croatian territory, bus time tables will be adjusted and operation optimized, which will also keep the existing price level. The majority of bus lines will not be cancelled; the lines important for the local community will remain in effect.

In the bus station management market there will be no significant effects of the concentration concerned in spite of the fact that Arriva will be managing 16 bus stations. The area concerned is namely regulated by separate laws stupulatin that every individual bus station must provide services on equal basis to all bus operators. The price of bus station services is regulated and approved by the Croatian Chamber of the Economy. Categorization criteria are set by the competent ministry of transport whereas the decision on categorization is adopted by the competent state administrative authority.

No replies to the request for information have been received by the CCA and the concentration was cleared in the first phase.