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  #151  
Old August 22nd, 2008, 10:15 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
tim.....
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Posts: 1,591
Default Opinions on trains and planes.


"Keith Willshaw" wrote in message
...

"tim....." wrote in message
...

"Keith Willshaw" wrote in message
...

"tim....." wrote in message
...


The Chunnel surely has surpassed all expectations, hasn't it?

In losing money, yes


As it happens current traffic levels are pretty much in line with
the estimates, the problem is that it ramped up much more
slowly than predicted and building and financing costs were
much higher.


The problem is that those traffic levels were predicted at fares expected
to be 4 times those being charged.


Thats part of the story, the predicted revenues were based on the fares
currently being charged by the ferries. As a result of the competiton
Eurotunnel introduced the ferry companies had to radically reduce
their own fares to survive. This resulted in a price war which hurt
both ferry operators and Eurotunnel

P&O lost 23% of its business in the first year that Eurotunnel
operated and had to merge with arival company. Other operators
such as Sally Lines and Oostende Lines went bust. Entire routes
such as those from Folkestone and Ramsgate as well as the
hovercraft routes were abandoned completely



The Eurotunnel business plan envisaged this (route consolidation) happening
anyway, but still expected to charge 300 pounds per car for a round trip.

tim




  #152  
Old August 23rd, 2008, 01:27 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Mark Brader
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Posts: 346
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?


The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly
eaten by the British and French governments.
--
Mark Brader "That's what progress is for. Progress
Toronto is for creating new forms of aggravation."
-- Keith Jackson
  #153  
Old August 23rd, 2008, 06:28 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Stefan Patric[_2_]
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Posts: 26
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:27:01 -0500, Mark Brader wrote:

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?


The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly eaten by
the British and French governments.


So, the answer is "no."

Stef
  #154  
Old August 23rd, 2008, 04:55 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Hatunen
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Posts: 4,483
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 05:28:55 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:27:01 -0500, Mark Brader wrote:

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?


The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly eaten by
the British and French governments.


So, the answer is "no."


Depending on how you define "profitable". It appears to have been
profitable for the operating consortium.

--
************* DAVE HATUNEN ) *************
* Tucson Arizona, out where the cacti grow *
* My typos & mispellings are intentional copyright traps *
  #155  
Old August 24th, 2008, 04:13 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Stefan Patric[_2_]
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Posts: 26
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 08:55:59 -0700, Hatunen wrote:

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 05:28:55 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:27:01 -0500, Mark Brader wrote:

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?

The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly eaten by
the British and French governments.


So, the answer is "no."


Depending on how you define "profitable". It appears to have been
profitable for the operating consortium.


What you're talking about is income, not profit. There's a BIG
difference between the two. At least, that's what the Internal Revenue
Service keeps telling me. ;-)

Stef
Small Business Owner
  #156  
Old August 25th, 2008, 02:23 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Hatunen
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Posts: 4,483
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Sun, 24 Aug 2008 03:13:48 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 08:55:59 -0700, Hatunen wrote:

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 05:28:55 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:27:01 -0500, Mark Brader wrote:

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?

The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly eaten by
the British and French governments.

So, the answer is "no."


Depending on how you define "profitable". It appears to have been
profitable for the operating consortium.


What you're talking about is income, not profit. There's a BIG
difference between the two. At least, that's what the Internal Revenue
Service keeps telling me. ;-)


not what I'm talking about.

It's not uncommon for large ventures like eurotunnel to split
into two companies, one to be the one who built the tunnel,
thereby assuming all the construction costs and constituting the
real owner, and the other to actually operate a system using,
e.g., the tunnel; the latter carries none of the original debt
but would pay agreed "rental" of the facility, which may not be
enough to cover the original debt. Thus, the opeating company can
make a profit.

It is also possible for the owner company to declare bankruptcy
under the laws of the applicable nation, therby shedding some of
the original debt, and/or restructuring that debt, but still
functioning at a loss. YMMV on al this, of course, depending on
the creativity of yoru accountants.

--
************* DAVE HATUNEN ) *************
* Tucson Arizona, out where the cacti grow *
* My typos & mispellings are intentional copyright traps *
  #157  
Old August 28th, 2008, 05:45 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Stefan Patric[_2_]
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Posts: 26
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Sun, 24 Aug 2008 18:23:57 -0700, Hatunen wrote:

On Sun, 24 Aug 2008 03:13:48 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 08:55:59 -0700, Hatunen wrote:

On Sat, 23 Aug 2008 05:28:55 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Fri, 22 Aug 2008 19:27:01 -0500, Mark Brader wrote:

Stefan Patric writes:
Was the Concord ever profitable at all?

The Concorde earned back its operating costs once it went into
transatlantic service, but its development costs were mostly eaten
by the British and French governments.

So, the answer is "no."

Depending on how you define "profitable". It appears to have been
profitable for the operating consortium.


What you're talking about is income, not profit. There's a BIG
difference between the two. At least, that's what the Internal Revenue
Service keeps telling me. ;-)


not what I'm talking about.

It's not uncommon for large ventures like eurotunnel to split into two
companies, one to be the one who built the tunnel, thereby assuming all
the construction costs and constituting the real owner, and the other to
actually operate a system using, e.g., the tunnel; the latter carries
none of the original debt but would pay agreed "rental" of the facility,
which may not be enough to cover the original debt. Thus, the opeating
company can make a profit.

It is also possible for the owner company to declare bankruptcy under
the laws of the applicable nation, therby shedding some of the original
debt, and/or restructuring that debt, but still functioning at a loss.
YMMV on al this, of course, depending on the creativity of yoru
accountants.


http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=153&sid=3034111

Now, we know: Eurotunnel posted its first profitable year in 2007 after
13 years of operation.


Stef
  #158  
Old August 28th, 2008, 06:17 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Hatunen
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Posts: 4,483
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Thu, 28 Aug 2008 04:45:44 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Sun, 24 Aug 2008 18:23:57 -0700, Hatunen wrote:


It is also possible for the owner company to declare bankruptcy under
the laws of the applicable nation, therby shedding some of the original
debt, and/or restructuring that debt, but still functioning at a loss.
YMMV on al this, of course, depending on the creativity of yoru
accountants.


http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=153&sid=3034111

Now, we know: Eurotunnel posted its first profitable year in 2007 after
13 years of operation.


Yes, "its first annual net profit, less than a year after the
company nearly drowned in debt."

And after a debt restructuring deal:

"Eurotunnel lurched from one debt crisis to another until it
reached a restructuring deal with shareholders last year allowing
it to cut its 9.2 billion euros debt to 4.16 billion euros
($14.44 billion to ($6.53 billion) by repaying banks in the form
of shares."

Which "...halved Eurotunnel's debt and saved it from bankruptcy"

and which " ... created a new company, Groupe Eurotunnel SA, and
diluted existing shareholders' stake to 13 percent. The vast bulk
of the debt was held by financial institutions, but a large
number of small shareholders, mostly in France, bought shares
when the company was floated in 1987 and they have suffered the
most."

And notice that Groupe Eurotunnel runs only the tunnel itself,
collecting tolls from the train operators, Eurostar and whatever
Le Shuttle is called now, and that the original construction
debts was never paid off.

Although Eurotunel didn't declare bankruptcy, as I suggested
above, it did come so close that it scared its creditors into
taking less than owed, and basically screwed the small investors.



--
************* DAVE HATUNEN ) *************
* Tucson Arizona, out where the cacti grow *
* My typos & mispellings are intentional copyright traps *
  #159  
Old August 29th, 2008, 06:28 AM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
Stefan Patric[_2_]
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Posts: 26
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

On Wed, 27 Aug 2008 22:17:58 -0700, Hatunen wrote:

On Thu, 28 Aug 2008 04:45:44 GMT, Stefan Patric
wrote:

On Sun, 24 Aug 2008 18:23:57 -0700, Hatunen wrote:


It is also possible for the owner company to declare bankruptcy under
the laws of the applicable nation, therby shedding some of the
original debt, and/or restructuring that debt, but still functioning
at a loss. YMMV on al this, of course, depending on the creativity of
yoru accountants.


http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=153&sid=3034111

Now, we know: Eurotunnel posted its first profitable year in 2007 after
13 years of operation.


Yes, "its first annual net profit, less than a year after the company
nearly drowned in debt."

And after a debt restructuring deal:

"Eurotunnel lurched from one debt crisis to another until it reached a
restructuring deal with shareholders last year allowing it to cut its
9.2 billion euros debt to 4.16 billion euros ($14.44 billion to ($6.53
billion) by repaying banks in the form of shares."

Which "...halved Eurotunnel's debt and saved it from bankruptcy"

and which " ... created a new company, Groupe Eurotunnel SA, and diluted
existing shareholders' stake to 13 percent. The vast bulk of the debt

[snip]

Although Eurotunel didn't declare bankruptcy, as I suggested above, it
did come so close that it scared its creditors into taking less than
owed, and basically screwed the small investors.


I'm glad that Prime Minister Thatcher mandated that the British half of
the project be privately financed--no public money. (This wasn't a
public works project, after all.) Couldn't find any info on whether the
French used government funds or not.

However, now the question is: Can Eurotunnel be profitable two years in
a row? ;-)

Stef
  #160  
Old August 29th, 2008, 03:43 PM posted to rec.travel.usa-canada
James Silverton[_2_]
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Posts: 531
Default Opinions on trains and planes.

Hatunen wrote on Tue, 19 Aug 2008 19:00:24 -0700:

Hatunen wrote:
On Tue, 19 Aug 2008 15:40:55 -0400, "J. Clarke"
wrote:

Tom P wrote:
JamesStep wrote:
One factor that's often not considered is that around 25%
of people consider themselves nervous flyers, according
to some surveys. Many of these people would probably
prefer train travel if it was comparable to airlines in
cost and time.

James

I commute regularly 250 miles inside Germany, sometimes by
plane, sometimes by rail. It is comparable in terms of
cost and time - but as time goes by I am getting more
nervous travelling by high speed train than by air. Trains
are intrinsically less safe than airplanes for many
reasons- - an airplane has two engines. If one stops, it
carries on flying. A train has dozens of wheels and axles.
If just one of these breaks at high speed, you're dead.

So how many people have died as a result of a single wheel
or axle on a train breaking?

101 on the InterCityExpress near Eschede, Germany in 1998.
See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/InterCityExpress


You're late--this has already been discussed.


Not when I posted it. And I'm one of the ones who discussed
it.


There is an interesting article in today's Daily Telegraph maintaing
that train travel in NW Europe is faster and cheaper than planes:
http://tinyurl.com/6k8vyc

--

James Silverton
Potomac, Maryland

Email, with obvious alterations: not.jim.silverton.at.verizon.not

 




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