We analyze potential gains from hypothetical mergers in local public transport using the non-parametric Data Envelopment Analysis with bias corrections by means of bootstrapping. Our sample consists of 41 public transport companies from Germany's most densely populated region, North Rhine-Westphalia. We merge them into geographically meaningful, larger units that operate partially on a joint tram network. Merger gains are then decomposed into individual technical efficiency, synergy and size effects following the methodology of Bogetoft and Wang [Bogetoft, P., Wang, D., 2005. Estimating the Potential Gains from Mergers. Journal of Productivity Analysis, 23(2), 145-171]. Our empirical findings suggest that substantial gains up to 16 percent of factor inputs are present, mainly resulting from synergy effects.
Merger public transport efficiency Data Envelopment Analysis