Unable to raise ticket prices, WR plans to increase revenue by renting space to ATMs

Unable to raise ticket prices, WR plans to increase revenue by renting space to ATMs
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After failing to meet its bi-annual earning target, Western Railway (WR) plans to increase its revenue by renting out more space to banks for the installation of ATMs.

The railway board had set a target of Rs 249.59 crore for the period from April-August 2016. However, according to the latest earning report, the unit has fell short by 10 percent. The final revenue for the 6 month period stood at Rs 222.70, approximately Rs 27 crore short of the target.

According to a senior WR official, the dip in revenue is due to lack of additional revenue opportunities and fixed ticket revenues. “The biggest source of revenue is ticket sales, which remain stagnant because we cannot increase services or increase fares. Which means the only other way of earning more is the leverage some of our other assets like station space and use them to earn more,” he said.

“To do that we will now rent out space to more banks for ATMs. It’s a win-win situation for everyone as commuters also benefit from smaller queues,” he added.

WR has identified 88 such sites which can be rented out to banks for setting up ATMs. Tenders for the same will likely be floated at the start of October.

According to one report, WR also plans to increase parking spaces at 20 stations to increase revenue.

Incidentally, while WR has failed to meet the target, it hasn’t witnessed a decline in revenue. In August, WR managed to earn Rs 60.66 crore against a target of Rs 68.50 crore. However, the revenue was over a crore more than that of August 2015.

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