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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Rail supplier updates from Wabtec, Crouch Engineering, Trinity, American Railcar, Harsco and Investec (July 27)

• Wabtec Corp. signed a contract to provide brake equipment for freight cars that lessor GATX Rail Europe plans to purchase from various European-based suppliers. Under the contract, which is valued at about $18 million, Wabtec will produce various models of brake systems in Europe. The company will provide such components as control valves, slack adjusters, cylinders, compact truck brakes, discs and calipers. “Through this project, we are expanding our capabilities in the European freight-rail market, and will eventually introduce new integrated brake-beam technology,” said Wabtec President and Chief Executive Officer Albert Neupaver in a prepared statement.

• Crouch Engineering promoted Jay Harris from manager of engineering to operations manager. Harvey Crouch, who founded the railway and bridge engineering firm in 1991, will continue to serve as acting general manager, president and chief executive officer. Harris began his rail engineering career with Crouch Engineering in 1998 as a surveyor and designer. Crouch Engineering also named Kevin Lindsey manager of engineering to succeed Harris and Derek Godwin, manager of structures. Lindsey, who joined the firm in 1997, most recently was manager of structural and bridge engineering. Godwin has contributed his bridge and structural engineering expertise to Crouch Engineering for the past seven years.

• Trinity Industries Inc. reported that second-quarter revenue jumped 45 percent to $1 billion and net income skyrocketed 126 percent to $67.8 million compared with second-quarter 2011 results. The Rail Group generated revenue of $516.9 million and an operating profit of $53 million versus $280.7 million and $15.4 million, respectively, in the year-ago period. The group shipped 5,245 rail cars and received orders for 8,610 cars in the quarter. As of June 30, the group’s backlog grew to 30,610 cars valued at about $3.2 billion compared with 27,245 cars valued at $2.6 billion as of March 31. The Railcar Leasing and Management Services Group posted revenue of $132 million versus $121.6 million in second-quarter 2011.

• American Railcar Industries Inc. (ARI) reported consolidated second-quarter revenue of $154.2 million compared with $111.9 million in second-quarter 2011. Consolidated earnings from operations climbed to a record $26 million, more than tripling the $8.2 million earned in the year-ago period. ARI shipped 2,200 rail cars, including 910 cars for leasing customers, and received orders for 2,810 cars in the quarter. In second-quarter 2011, the company shipped 1,040 cars. As of June 30, ARI’s backlog stood at 6,800 cars, including 1,620 cars for lease customers.

• Harsco Corp. elected James Earl to its board. Earl has served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of GATX Corp. since 2006. He most recently was named president of the GATX Rail International business group. Earl previously held various management positions at the Soo Line Railroad and Southern Pacific Transportation Co.

• Banking and asset management firm Investec obtained a 1.25 percent stake in Nomad Digital, a United Kingdom-based transportation communications company. Investec previously helped Nomad finance a Wi-Fi project on Virgin West Coast passenger trains. Other significant stakeholders in Nomad include Amadeus Capital Partners Ltd., SEB and T-Mobile Ventures.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/27/2012