Commercially successful COMS

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The newest vehicle in the Thames Travel fleet is ADL Enviro200MMC 454. RICHARD SHARMAN

Go-Ahead Group-owned Oxford Bus Company has been growing steadily for the last decade. Richard Sharman looks at how being commercially minded has grown the business in Oxfordshire and beyond

The City of Oxford Motor Services, which trades as Oxford Bus Company (OBC), has always been a very traditional bus company, originally based at a large depot on the Cowley Road in Oxford until it moved to a new purpose-built bus depot opposite the BMW factory in Cowley in 2004. Since then it has been on an acquisition trail that has seen it vastly expand its operating area.

Beyond the city
Go-Ahead Group has owned OBC since 1994, and in the years that followed the company’s network has seen some major changes. Four years prior to Go-Ahead Group’s involvement, OBC had acquired The Bee Line’s bus operations in High Wycombe and operated them under the Wycombe Bus Company name. By 2000 that operation was sold to Arriva the Shires and operations became more focused on bus and coach services in Oxfordshire, although there were some attempts at expansion to Bicester and Witney in the late 1990s.

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