French firm will take over contract
Stagecoach Group has sold the company which operates Manchester's tram network.
The Metrolink subsidiary has been snapped up by French operator Ratp Dev for an undisclosed sum.
Metrolink has a contract with Transport for Greater Manchester to run the 40 kilometre tram network - which carries around 21 million passengers a year - until 2017.
The tram system is also in the middle of a £1.4bn expansion programme
Paul Matthews, chief executive of Ratp Dev UK, said: "Metrolink is one of the UK's most successful tram networks, so we are naturally delighted to join with the existing team to be able to bring our expertise and know-how to continue its further development.
"Metrolink is now embarking upon a significant phase of expansion which presents us with plenty of opportunities to assist in producing a world class tramway of which the city can be rightfully proud."
It was reported Metrolink had a turnover of around £27 million and made profits of £4 million in its most recent financial year.
Stagecoach said it was not in discussions about selling its tram operations in Sheffield.
Ratp Dev runs transport networks in several cities around the world including the Metro in Paris.