Neu-Isenburg, Germany / Paris, France – LSG Sky Chefs, the world’s largest provider of onboard services, has signed a three-year contract with French train operator iDTGV in cooperation with French coffee-shop chain Columbus Café & Co, to provide onboard services and crew management for iDTGV’s high-speed train network in France, beginning November 16, 2014.
Under the contract, LSG Sky Chefs will provide iDTGV with a robust set of onboard services, including the development of a new onboard product concept complete with the associated procurement and logistics. The concept stands out for how it brings the “Frenchiness” of Columbus Café & Co to the train with its unique assortment of products, which includes hot and cold beverages, as well as their generous signature muffins and cookies, plus savory bagels and sandwiches.
Within a second agreement, LSG Sky Chefs will also take over the crew management and onboard sales for iDTGV. All food and beverages will be loaded on the trains at the Gare de Lyon and Montparnasse stations in Paris, including provisions for the return journey.
“By choosing LSG Sky Chefs – Columbus Café, iDTGV has bet on a new on-board concept for its trains with “Le Café iDTGV,” the first high-speed coffee shop. The combined expertise of LSG Sky Chefs and Columbus Café & Co is a major asset,” said Valérie Dehlinger, CEO of iDTGV.
“We have gained a lot of experience in the rail catering segment over the last two years, which has opened the doors to new markets in Europe for LSG Sky Chefs,” said Stefan Patermann, Vice President Business Development and Strategy Europe at LSG Sky Chefs. “We are very pleased to be working together in this new partnership with iDTGV and Columbus Café.”
iDTGV is a subsidiary of French national railway company SNCF, connecting Paris with some 30 large and mid-size cities throughout the country. The high-speed trains are operated with two individual carriage zones: iDzen, a quiet, mobile-phone-free area for travelers looking for calm and tranquility and iDzap, a lively area designed for families and passengers looking for entertainment, including concerts onboard. Food service is offered at the seat in the iDzen and First class carriage zones, as well as in the iDZinc, the bar carriage.
LSG Sky Chefs’ train division offers a complete range of service, including the supply of nearly 3.5 million meals a year to train operators in Europe. In 2013, with 14 exclusive train service centers operating in France, Italy, Germany, Belgium and Sweden, LSG Sky Chefs’ train division reached revenues of 35 million. More info at trainservices.lsgskychefs.com
iDTGV offers another way to travel, the train is much more than a mean of transportation. iDTGV concept is based on a choice of ambience, iDzen or iDZap, serving 30 locations around France, starting from 19 euros. Customer relationship is a priority for iDTGV that has developed a global vision of customer service using social networks (Facebook, Twitter, blogs), or FAQ, which enable to interact in real time with customers. iDTGV also won an award for the 3rd consecutive year at the Election of Customer Service of the Year in the category “Transportation of Passengers” and in October 2013 received the silver award of “Director of Relationship client”. For more information, please visit our Web site: www.idtgv.com
In 1994, Columbus Café & Co. unveiled a new concept by opening the first coffee shop in France. The brand’s name is linked to Christopher Columbus. Taking this explorer as the brand’s emblem invites customers to explore the company’s cosmopolitan specialties, such as coffee from around the world, exclusive American muffins and English club sandwiches. Columbus Café & Co is an Anglo-Saxon concept with a Parisian touch of authenticity and French culinary experience. With more than 80 outlets by the end of 2014, Columbus Café & Co delivers a taste of “gourmandize,” the weakness for sweet things, to every customer. For more information, please visit the website at www.columbuscafe.com