Metrobus in row with BTA over share

Metrobus, the bus contractor which evolved from Primesight two years ago, has thrown the already turbulent bus advertising market into further turmoil by capturing a large slice of British Transport Advertising’s portfolio.

Metrobus has won the 4,000 strong Badgerline Group contract, which accounts for about 25 per cent of BTA’s business. However, industry observers have dismissed Metrobus’s claims that this will make it the UK’s largest bus contractor.

BTA sales and marketing director Julian Macey is angry at the contradictory claims by the major contractors following the deregulation of the bus industry.

“We don’t need any more confusion in this industry – any muddying of the waters by our competitors doesn’t do anyone any good,” he says.

The bus marketplace has been jolted by the aggression of the US giant TDI, which took over LTA’s Underground contracts last year. In December LTA announced that it had also taken a raft of contracts from BTA, giving it control “as of today” of more than 25 per cent of the UK market.

Macey says this is not true. In an attempt to clarify the picture, BTA is issuing an up-to-date schedule this week showing when existing contracts expire.

Meanwhile, specialists have complained that the fragmenting bus market will discourage buyers. “It’s an absolute nightmare to try and plan ahead while they don’t co-operate. There’s a danger that the bus market will suffer because of it,” says Concord managing director Alan Simmons.

* LTA is donating ú100,000 of space on London buses to a six week campaign to raise awareness of child abuse, starting on January 10.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here