Top Track 100

Virgin Rail is bidding for the east coast franchise, which is now operated by GNER but is up for renewal next April. Success would give the company, which is 49% owned by Stagecoach, a near monopoly on express routes running north and south in England. Virgin already operates the west coast and cross-country routes. The company reckons it has spent nearly £2 billion on its new Voyager and Pendolino tilting trains and on April 23 this year, tilting finally began on a 20-mile stretch between Oxford and Banbury. Sales at Virgin Rail reached £556m in 2003.

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Company details
Year2004
Rank53
CompanyVirgin Rail Group
ActivityTrain operator
LocationCentral London
Sales £m556
Profit £m-12
Year endMar 03
Principal shareholdersVirgin Investments (51%) and Stagecoach (49%)
Staff4,372
Founded1996
Websitewww.virgintrains.co.uk

If applicable:

* Supplied by company † Annualised figure **Estimated