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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Rail supplier news from L.B. Foster, Bayer CropScience, ZTR, Trinity, Wabtec, HNTB and AccessRail (Oct. 30)


L.B. Foster Co. announced it forged an agreement to acquire the railroad tuning unit, FWO, of Balfour Beatty Rail GmbH. The German business provides track lubrication and switch roller equipment for international railway applications. "FWO railway products will complement and expand L.B. Foster's existing line of friction management and track products," said Robert Bauer, L.B. Foster's president and chief executive officer, in a press release. "This acquisition will undoubtedly enhance L.B. Foster's rail activities in Europe."

Bayer CropScience and DuPont Crop Protection signed an agreement for Bayer to purchase certain DuPont Crop Protection Land Management assets in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand. Closing of the transaction is expected in the fourth quarter.  Financial terms were not disclosed. The acquisition will enable Bayer’s environmental science business unit to offer a comprehensive portfolio of products for effective weed control for industrial vegetation management, according to a company press release.
ZTR Control Systems obtained a contract from DB Schenker Rail to supply more than 300 SmartStart® Automatic Engine Start-Stop systems by early 2015. The contract calls for systems that are EN50155 certified, as required by European railway standards. The deal was signed at InnoTrans 2014 on Sept. 23, and installation on DB Schenker’s BR294 locomotive fleet has begun, according to a press release.

Trinity Industries Inc. reported third-quarter net income rose 50 percent to $149.4 million, or 90 cents per common diluted share, compared with a year ago. Quarterly revenue rose 41 percent to $1.56 billion. Also during the quarter, the rail group received orders for 14,120 new rail cars, which resulted in a record backlog of 51,725 units with a record value of $6.1 billion. Trinity also completed the acquisition of Meyer Steel Structures for a purchase price of $593 million. The company anticipates full-year 2014 earnings per common diluted share of $4.08 to $4.16.

Wabtec reported record results for the third quarter, including sales of $797 million sales, up 26 percent year over year; income from operations of $136 million; and earnings per share of 93 cents. The total multiyear backlog increased to a record value of $2.8 billion, primarily due to new contracts for locomotive overhauls, freight-car components and signaling projects, and acquisitions, Wabtec officials said in a press release.

Terry Nash joined HNTB Corp. as senior project manager for transit and rail and associate vice president. He has18 years of project management experience, specializing in the transit- rail industry. At HNTB, Nash will focus on project management, delivery and integration for transit-rail clients in the western United States. Prior to joining HNTB, he served as associate vice president at another consulting firm, where he was responsible for managing preliminary and final design projects for U.S. transit agencies.

AccessRail and VIA Rail Canada Inc. established a partnership to extend VIA's distribution reach to more than 120,000 travel agencies around the world through AccessRail's airline connection to Global Distribution Systems, which will enable the integration of rail services into travel agents' booking systems.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 10/30/2014