Lina Group allots P200 million for new transport venture

By Lorenz S. Marasigan, BusinessMirror

Posted at May 08 2014 07:43 AM | Updated as of May 08 2014 03:43 PM

MANILA - The Lina Group of Companies, the operator of logistics provider Air21, is investing as much as P200 million in the next six to nine months to acquire several articulated buses that would help curb the growing congestion at the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT 3).

Chairman Alberto D. Lina said in a chance interview on Wednesday that his firm is spending close to P100 million to P200 million for the acquisition of five to 10 articulated buses’ lorries the size of roughly two standard buses and has a pivot joint in the middle—to ply the same route as the railway line that connects the north and south of Metro Manila.

“This will facilitate to a more efficient travel, and this is our answer to the needs of Metro Manila,” Lina said, adding that the fare for the buses would be in the vicinity of P20 to P25, depending on the stretch of travel.

“These buses will be used to support the Mass Rail Transit 3 system, especially during peak hours.”

An articulated bus was deployed on Wednesday to test whether the service would be viable.

“We will file a formal application before the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board to give us the authority to operate these buses,” Lina noted, referring to the planned acquisition of new coaches which will be funded through bank loans.

When approved, this will be the first time the company would engage in passenger travel. The group operates door-to-door delivery firm Air21, among others.

“I hope it will be viable, but we have to take the risk. It cannot be [a] temporary [business],” he added.