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24 Mar 2022

MCF advises VR Group on the acquisition of Arriva Sverige

VR Group (“VR”) has agreed to acquire the Swedish bus and rail operator Arriva Sverige. Arriva Sverige operates urban transport in Stockholm, and regional transport in southern and south-eastern Sweden. Through the transaction, VR Group aims to grow and strengthen its position and competitiveness as an urban transport operator and boost the electrification of the Swedish bus transport market. MCF acted as adviser to VR throughout the process and helped facilitate the transaction through its proven ability to successfully execute cross-border transactions.

"Arriva Sverige is a market leader in quality on the Swedish rail market, and this will strengthen our competitiveness in the future rail competition also in Finland. We are a pioneer regarding the electrification of bus traffic, and we can offer our expertise to promote the electrification of the Swedish market. Moreover, the acquisition offers us a scale advantage in electric bus development and purchases".

Topi Simola

Director of VR Group’s Passenger Services

The Deal

VR Group is a responsible service company that focuses on travel, logistics and maintenance. As the leading public transport operator in Finland, VR provides long-distance and commuter traffic with trains, buses and trams across Finland. At the same time, VR is speeding up the journey towards climate-friendly public transport.

Through the acquisition, VR will enter the large and growing Swedish transport market, that is supported by population growth, urbanisation and significant public investments in infrastructure, rail traffic and public transport. Arriva Sverige’s established position as a significant transport operator in Sweden improves VR’s competitiveness both in bus and rail transport – in Sweden and Finland.

The Target

Arriva Sverige is a Swedish bus and rail operator, providing urban transport in Stockholm, and regional transport in southern and south-eastern Sweden. In 2021, Arriva Sverige served over 170 million passengers with revenues of over EUR 300m. The company is part of the pan-European passenger transport company, Arriva Group, owned by Deutsche Bahn. After the acquisition, Arriva Sverige becomes an independent company under VR Group.

About VR Group

Established in 1862, VR is a Finnish state-owned service company operating in rail and bus travel, logistics and maintenance, primarily in Finland. In 2021, VR’s net sales amounted to EUR 838m, provided 55 million train journeys and transported 37.4 million metric tonnes of goods. Employing approximately 5,600 professionals, VR is the leading transport operator in Finland.

Disclaimer

The transaction is expected to close in early July 2022, subject to customary closing condition, including approvals from the German Ministry for Digital and Transport and the Deutsche Bahn Supervisory Board.