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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Deutsche Bahn to acquire U.K. passenger-rail operator

Deutsche Bahn AG is about to enter the United Kingdom rail market. The German rail operator recently announced plans to acquire Laing Rail, which owns Chiltern Railways, and jointly owns London Overground Rail Operations Ltd. and Wrexham, Shropshire and Marylebone Railway Ltd. The transaction is subject to approval from the Department for Transport, Transport for London and the Office of Rail Regulation.

Chiltern Railways would become part of DB Region AG, Deutsche Bahn’s division responsible for operating regional and local services. The railway will retain its identity and name, and the current management team will remain in place, Deutsche Bahn said.

Launched in November 2007, London Overground runs on lines previously serviced by Silverlink Metro. Beginning in 2010, the railroad will run on the refurbished and extended East London Line, and be renamed the East London Railway.

Set to start service in spring, Wrexham, Shropshire and Marylebone Railway will operate long-distance passenger-rail service from Wrexham and Shropshire to London Marylebone.

“We will now be operating large-scale passenger transport outside of Germany,” said Deutsche Bahn board member and Passenger Transport Division Chairman Karl-Friedrich Rausch in a prepared statement. “It will allow us to substantially strengthen our positioning in the European market along with providing the basis for further growth.”

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More News from 1/22/2008