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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Rail supplier news from Wabtec, Greenbrier, FreightCar America, Granite Construction, Vossloh and moovel (Aug. 2)


Wabtec Corp. has acquired Gerken Group SA, a manufacturer of specialty carbon and graphite products for rail and other industrial applications. The acquired company has annual sales of $40 million, Wabtec officials said in a press release. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Gerken's product range expands Wabtec's capabilities with existing customers and in new markets, said Wabtec President and Chief Executive Officer Raymond Betler, adding that the acquisition is a "good strategic fit."

The Greenbrier Cos. Inc. has closed on the acquisition of a 19.5 percent stake in Amsted-Maxion Cruzeiro, a Brazil-based manufacturer of castings and components for rail cars and other heavy equipment. Greenbrier acquired the company for $10 million. Amsted-Maxion Cruzeiro also is owned by Amsted Rail Brasil and lochpe-Maxion S.A., each holding 40.25 percent of the company. Amsted-Maxion Cruzeiro will use Greenbrier's investment to pay down outstanding debt and position itself for future growth, Greenbrier officials said in a press release.

For second-quarter 2016, FreightCar America Inc. reported a net loss of $500,000, or negative four cents per diluted share, compared with net income of $7.4 million, or 60 cents per diluted share, during the same period last year. Revenue came in at $126.2 million versus $235.6 million a year ago. The company delivered 1,372 rail cars in Q2 2016, all of which were new. In Q2 2015, the company delivered 2,611 rail cars, including 1,861 new and 750 rebuilt ones. Over the next year, FreightCar America plans to cut annual operating costs by $5 million through a 15 percent reduction of the company's salaried workforce; closure of its administrative office in Johnstown, Pa.; and reduction of certain discretionary spending. The company expects to complete those measures by mid-2017.

Granite Construction Inc. has obtained a $128 million construction manager/general contractor contract from the California Department of Transportation for the California State Route 99 realignment project in Fresno, Calif. The scope of work includes construction of a reconfigured interchange, overhead structures and infrastructure to accommodate the planned high-speed rail system between the existing freeway and Union Pacific Railroad tracks. The California High-Speed Rail Authority is funding the project. Work is expected to be completed by September 2018.

Hirschmann Automation and Control (PAT) has selected Stevenson Crane Service Inc. as its new premier dealer for Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin. Stevenson will offer the entire line of Hirschmann, PAT and Krueger branded crane operator aids. The systems include load moment indicators, wireless and hard-wired indicators, anti-two block systems, and a complete line of sensors.

Vossloh Locomotives, a subsidiary of Vossloh AG, signed a contract with French company Akiem S.A.S. for the delivery of 44 DE 18 diesel-electric locomotives. The contract is valued at $156.7 million. The locomotives for Akiem will be manufactured at the Vossloh Locomotives plant in Kiel Suchsdorf and shipped starting in 2018.

moovel North America has hired Matt Jones as chief product officer, who will be based in the Portland, Ore., office. Jones will be responsible for "orchestrating the vision and roadmap" for the company urban mobility products, including the moovel transit and RideTap apps. Jones has more than 15 years of software innovation and leadership expertise, company officials said in a press release. He previously served as director of future technology at Jaguar Land Rover.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/2/2016