Ferry firm quits flexible price policy on reactions
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily NewsİDO, Istanbul’s ferry company, has stepped back from its flexible price policy as annoyance amounts against the company’s expensive last-minute tickets.
The company said in a press release yesterday that it returns to fixed prices as of today.
Hamdi Akın, chair of Akfen Holding, a local property developer and airport and port operator which owns a 30 percent share in İDO, apologized to the company’s patrons and said İDO will return to a single-price policy, daily Hürriyet also reported yesterday.
“I accept that mistakes have been made regarding the dynamic ticket pricing policy and I apologize for that. We have not deserved [such a heated] reaction, but I still apologize to all passengers. It really saddened me to be held responsible about pricing and ticket sales even though I am not part of the management. But we’ve realized our mistake and have prepared an action plan. We will return to a single-price policy in ticket sales as of Friday,” he said.
İDO was privatized in April
of last year by the Istanbul Municipality. A consortium of Tepe Construction, Akfen, Souter Investments and Sera Real Estate Investment won the tender with a bid of $861 million. Souter Investments is the private investment office
of Stagecoach founder Brian Souter, according to its official web site. Sera owns 10 percent and the remaining partners each own 30 percent in İDO. Akın said Souter supported the new single-pricing policy.
“We have removed all pricing practices such as last-minute pricing, varying prices for different seats,” Akın said, adding that the number of passengers dropped 2 percent in the first six months of the year, a sign that the dynamic-pricing policy had not worked.
Adding to İDO’s worries is a rival firm from the western province of Bursa, who is set to emerge in the Marmara Sea transportation sector. The Bursa Municipality announced last month that they were in the process of establishing a marine transportation enterprise.