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First Transit History

A History of Innovations


First Transit’s growth is a direct result of our willingness to embrace change and the desire to build partnerships to achieve common goals.

Founded in 1955 as American Transportation Enterprises, First Transit has evolved over the last 66 years through a series of strategic mergers and acquisitions. Notably, in 1999 FirstGroup, plc acquired the firm and we became First Transit (300+ contracts and 12,000 transit vehicles owned or maintained across North America). Most recently, in 2021 EQT acquired First Transit from FirstGroup plc, adding us to their market leading infrastructure fund portfolio. Thus, making First Transit the largest privately owned passenger transportation company in North America.

Despite its various iterations over the last 66 years, First Transit’s forward-thinking approach of hiring and cultivating our transit professionals into leading experts in the field and sharing our best practices has always been—and continues to be—steadfast.

With a long and proud tradition in the world of public transit, First Transit is an industry leader in service, performance, and support.




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