UniteGPS – First Student continues to become the largest charter school bus enterprise in the nation after recently acquiring Apple Bus Company. Facilitated by BMO Capital Markets, on Feb. 24 First Student signed a purchase agreement to acquire the Missouri-based provider from Great Range Capital.

Despite recent lawsuits in Washington state, First Student still manages to grow its 43,000 bus fleet, having already acquired six other bus companies and adding over 1,100 school buses to its operations since 2019. According to First Student President Paul G. Osland in a press release, this was a logical step towards scaling the company’s presence in North America.

“Apple Bus Company shares in our unwavering commitment to provide students with safe, reliable transportation,” said Osland. “We look forward to introducing our industry-leading safety record, rigorous driver training programs, and cutting-edge technologies to even more school districts, families, and communities.”

First Student acquisition of Apple Bus Company 

Based in Cleveland, Missouri, Apple Bus Company provided student and charter bus services to over 80 school districts across the country. It had 33 locations in eight states with a fleet of around 1,500 buses.

Last summer, EQT Infrastructure purchased First Student from the UK’s First Group Plc for $4.6 billion. Terms and conditions for the acquisition still haven’t been disclosed, but will reportedly be complete by summer.