Report: NS to close up several shops, food stands at stations

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NS is scaling down on its involvement in the shops and food stands on train stations. The transporter currently employs 40 percent of the staff working in station stores, which amounts to some 5 thousand people.

Sources close to the decision said this to the Telegraaf.

Handing some of the responsibility of running the shops over to other parties is not a new idea. In February former NS CEO Timo Huges said to the FD that they are thinking about "a concept in which we do less ourselves", RTL NIeuws reports. He said that NS will continue to monitor the situation, to prevent a situation where thirteen chip stalls are next to each other at one station. "We will continue to monitor that. But we can get rid of some buildings and grounds. We are returning to our core business: the traveler."

Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem of Finance told NRC that he approves of this idea. The State is the sole shareholder of NS. "The operation of catering facilities at railway stations is not a task for NS."

According to the Telegraaf, NS will have a "new strategic profile" ready before the end of the year, in which will be described what the company will look like in the future. More information on the station shops should become available then.