Bus company announces modernization program-A A +A
Sunday, March 3, 2013
BUS operator Yanson Group of Bus Companies (YGBC) announced they are modernizing their fleet and systems.
Hernan Omecillo, YGBC vice-president for admin and MIS, told reporters over the weekend that their modernization program will include the deployment of Wi-Fi services in all of its air-conditioned buses nationwide, establishment of an online ticketing system and an automated fare collection system.
He declined, however, to disclose the amount of investments.
Omecillo said they already installed Wi-Fi services in 418 air-conditioned bus units throughout the country and they plan to complete the installment in all air-conditioned buses this month.
He said they will set up an online ticketing system to facilitate seamless bus ticket purchases and by this October, they will start modernizing the fare collection system through the use of cards.
Omecillo said the ticketing system will work similar to that of the fare and ticketing system of the Metro Rail Transit system in Manila. He said they want to upgrade the system to improve the passengers’ experience and to lessen bus robberies and theft among bus conductors.
The company will pilot the project in Bacolod but this will eventually be rolled out
YGBC, which has a total of 2,300 operational bus units, comprises four major bus companies, Vallacar Transit Inc., Bachelor Express Inc., Rural Transit Inc. and Ceres Transport Inc. The buses ply routes in central and southern Philippines.
The 45-year old bus company traces its beginnings to a single 14-seater jeepney plying
a single route in Bacolod, a business venture by couple Ricardo and Olivia Yanson, Sr.
With hard work and dedication, the couple was able to grow the business and shape the
four major bus companies into 11 branches, whose market share in the industry is now more than 80 percent.
Omecillo said they hope to sustain the leadership in the industry with the transition of the family enterprise to the second and third generations.
He said they are seeing an increase in passenger volume because of the country’s vibrant tourism industry and thriving business climate.
Omecillo said that despite the growing airline industry and the tough competition in the bus market, bus companies under YGBC are “performing well” as they adopted strategies to shorten travel time and introduced amenities that would bring in comfort and convenience to passengers.
“We have installed amenities like Wi-Fi, for example, which can’t be used by airlines,” he said. The inland travel gives pleasure to passengers as they get to enjoy the views which they can immediately share to their friends via social networking sites.”
Aside from modernizing bus units and the fare and collection system, the Bacolod-based bus company will further strengthen its presence in the southern part of the country.
More aircon buses
Following the Bohol expansion, Omecillo said the company will soon be serving Region VIII, which covers the areas of Biliran, Leyte and Samar.
The company will also increase their air-conditioned bus units to address changes in market preferences. Air-conditioned buses now make up 26 percent of the company’s fleet, an improvement from the previous 10 percent.
To maximize growth potential in tourism, Omecillo said they applied for franchise from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Body (LTFRB) to operate 20 tourist buses in Iloilo, Panay, Caticlan and Boracay. The application is subject for inspection by the Department of Tourism this week.
Omecillo said they will extend the operation in Cebu as soon as the franchise moratorium on tourist bus facilities in Region VII will be lifted by the Department of Transportation and Communication.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 04, 2013.