The bus and coach sector looks into the future
Leading bus and coach industry innovators, companies and representatives of cities gathered at the IRU round tables organised within the framework of the BUS2BUS Future Forum, held in Berlin on 25 - 26 April. The discussions focused on how to better prepare for the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for the two main market segments - group tourism by coach and intercity scheduled lines.
IRU also took the opportunity to present its preliminary results of its on-going study on a ‘Vision 2030’ for buses and coaches. Somewhat contrary to the draft working scenarios, which predicted a slow growth and even a decrease of the market in the next decade, participants emphasised the strong potential of growth for both market segments. But in order for this growth to become a reality, the private bus and coach industry, including small and medium-sized companies, would need to take the lead in innovation and digitalisation, by fully participating in the emerging platform economy.
The emerging role of cities was also emphasised, both in terms of market potential and regulatory impact on bus and coach business.
The study is expected to be finalised by June 2017. The first official results covering the coach market are expected to be presented publicly in October at Busworld Europe in Kortrijk.