ScotRail is let by Transport Scotland (TS) and operates intercity, regional and suburban rail services across the Scottish national rail network. Abellio began operating Scotland’s national railways from 1st April 2015 for a period of 10 years to March 2025. In December 2019, the Scottish Government announced that it would exercise the option in the franchise agreement to end the contract in March 2022 and not exercise the option to continue the franchise to 2025 under the contractual rebasing framework that reviews the level of subsidy required as a result of any changes in the economy and updated number of passengers and related passenger revenue forecasts compared to the level of subsidy required at the time of the bid in 2015.
Notwithstanding this announcement ScotRail will continue to closely cooperate with Network Rail with the aim to continue to deliver good services for the passengers during the remaining life of the franchise. Abellio will work closely together with Transport Scotland with a view on the long term development of the Scottish railways.
During 2019 ScotRail has completed the introduction of 70 new electric Hitachi class 385 trains into service. During 2019 ScotRail has continued to invest in the refurbishment programme for High Speed Trains (‘HSTs’) with a total of 9 refurbished HSTs in operation. The HSTs operate on intercity routes between Scotland’s seven cities. Across the ScotRail network, over 1,000 vehicles are now in service which is a 28% increase in carriages since the start of the franchise in 2015.
Following the December 2018 timetable changes in Scotland – the biggest change since the 1990s – there were a number of issues in the execution of the timetable which resulted in a high number of cancellations and delays in the first months of 2019. The franchise was challenged by serious delays in the completion of electrification projects by Network Rail and delays in the delivery of new and refurbished trains. As a result, training and new rostering arrangements of train crew were compromised in the run up to the new timetable launch as these had to be achieved in a very short period of time. Due to the dedication of the ScotRail employees and with the support of Abellio expertise, these performance issues have been remedied with the May 2019 and December 2019 timetable changes being well executed and customer satisfaction and punctuality measures recovering in line with a remedial plan as agreed with TS.
(in € million)
EBIT before IFRS 16 effect
IFRS 16 effect
Intercompany financial result*
Other financial results
Profit before tax
Net profit before IFRS 16 impact
Equity attributable to NS
PCS guarantees provided by NS
Other guarantees provided by NS
Capital at Risk, Scotrail
PCS guarantees called on
- * Intercompany financial result consists of interest on shareholder loans and guarantee fees.