Dutch firm takes over emergency services business in southern Jutland – The Post

Dutch firm takes over emergency services business in southern Jutland

September 1st, 2014 8:15 pm| by admin
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The Dutch rescue company Bios is looking to end Falck’s 100-year domination of the ambulance business.

The company has already taken over its rival's ambulance services in southern Jutland and is looking to expand across the country

"We are in Denmark to stay,” Bios owner Stef Hesselink told Børsen. “We are greatly interested in this market as there is almost no competition.”

Driving for the capital
Falck’s current market share in Denmark is estimated to be 85 percent, but Bios is looking to cut into that and has already had meetings with representatives from the capital region and other parts of Zealand.

“They visited us a few months ago to see how we do things,” said Hesselink. "I cannot say specifically that we will expand into the region, but I can say that we have a wide interest in Denmark.”

Bios are not the first company to take aim on the ambulance trade in Zealand. In 2008, the Swedish firm Samaritan tried its luck, only to bail out the following year after failing to turn a profit.

Won’t repeat past mistakes
Bios’s operations officer, Aad Romijn, said that his company is better prepared.

“As we understand it, they had no prior agreements,” Romijn told Børsen. “We met with 3F and the Danish business group Dansk Erhverv before we had even made a decision. We told 3F we would take over Falck’s commitments to its staff.”

Approximately 700 Falck rescue workers will lose their jobs in southern Jutland.

No decline in service
Per Busk, the director of health services in southern Jutland, said the lack of competition in the region made it ripe for a new company to bid for the contract, and Bios came in with an offer that was 660 million kroner cheaper over a ten-year period than the one Falck had on the table.

 Busk rejected the idea that there would be a drop in quality.

“Every bidder must prove that they can meet a series of standards, and it seems that the Dutch ambulance operation is very similar to that in Denmark.”

READ MORE: Falck: An international success since flying the nest

Falck head Allan Søgaard Larsen said that Falck is ready to fight for its operations in Zealand and in and around Copenhagen.

"Bios is welcome to make an offer,” he told Børsens. “I know this market and I know where the break-even point is – we will not go lower.”