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History of Alsa

History of ALSA

Permanent innovation, ongoing improvement and customer-based transport management are the foundations upon which the past and present of ALSA, an organisation immersed in an inter-communicated world which looks to the future with the same enthusiasm as at the very beginning, are built.

At the end of the 19th century, the western roads of Asturias bore witness to the birth of our company through "La Ferrocarrilana", the first Luarca stagecoach company, which made the Luarca-Oviedo trip in 15 hours. Some years later, in 1899, "El Luarca, Automóviles de Viajeros", with a new name and new vehicles, cut eight hours off the journey time by using newly acquired steam coaches, the company's first.

At the turn of the century the company underwent significant change. Technological advances, which allowed animal traction to be replaced firstly with steam engines and then with explosion engines, provided optimum possibilities for the development of transport.

The transportation of passengers and goods was of vital importance, as it facilitated the supply of foodstuffs and stocks, whilst promoting social and cultural development and exchanges between the regions served. They were difficult beginnings, with a great deal of hard work, but allowed the foundations upon which our professionalism is now based to be set down.

The western part of Asturias underwent significant economic development. Automóviles El Luarca (as it came to be known over time) was involved in this economic growth, making its first journey in a petrol driven coach in 1916.

Based on the experience accumulated in passenger and goods transport, in 1923 the company Automóviles Luarca, S.A. (A.L.S.A.) was set up, providing a modern framework for a series of activities related to transport, which continue to represent the reality of ALSA today.

Since then ALSA has positioned itself as a specialist company, fully qualified in all activities corresponding to passenger road transport.

The 1960s was a turning point in the history of ALSA, with significant progress and the start of constant growth for our company.

In 1964 the first international route, Oviedo-Paris-Brussels, was set up, followed later in the year by the scheduled Asturias-Madrid service. These new incursions allowed its vehicles to reach other points around Europe (Switzerland, Portugal¿), thereby extending its transport network and reaching ever more people.

The internationalisation process outside of Europe began in 1984 with the start of activities in the People's Republic of China. The next step was Morocco, through the awarding of the tender for urban transport in Marrakesh, in 1999.

Leading companies in the sphere of their respective regions of Galicia, Cantabria and Castile-Leon became part of ALSA during the 1990s. In 1999 it took over the public company Enatcar Group.

Coming right up to the present, the most important moment recently was the merger in 2005 with the British operator National Express Group and, more recently, the takeover in 2007 of Continental Auto Group, the second national transport operator in passenger road transport.

Permanent innovation, ongoing improvement and customer-based transport management are the foundations upon which the past and present of ALSA, an organisation immersed in an inter-communicated world which looks to the future with the same enthusiasm as at the very beginning, are built.