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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Rail supplier news from Wabtec, Rocla, Bombardier, GlobeSherpa, VTG, Parsons Brinckerhoff and Cubic (Aug. 22)


Wabtec Corp. has acquired Dia-Frag, which manufactures friction products in Brazil and registers annual sales of $40 million. Dia-Frag will extend Wabtec's existing footprint in Brazil with additional manufacturing capabilities, "and we expect to leverage its market-leading product line to grow our platforms in other global regions," said Wabtec President and Chief Executive Officer Raymond Betler in a press release. Dia-Frag has about 300 employees and operates a 15,000-square-meter production facility, which Wabtec plans to use as a manufacturing center of excellence for various product lines, company officials said.

Rocla Concrete Tie Inc. recently opened an expandable 30,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in San Jose Iturbide, Mexico. Located along a Kansas City Southern de México S.A. de C.V. mainline, the new plant also serves as the corporate office for Rocla subsidiary RCTI de Mexico. The plant will produce products for heavy haul mainline, transit and high-speed applications, and industrial-grade concrete ties.

Bombardier Transportation and leasing company Akiem S.A. have signed a contract for the delivery of 10 Bombardier TRAXX DC locomotives, with an option of up to 10 additional locomotives. The order is valued at $44 million, with the total potential contract value — if the option for 10 additional locomotives is exercised — of $86 million. The locomotives will be used for freight transport in Italy and Poland. Delivery is scheduled for 2015 and 2016.

Bombardier Transportation workers that operate GO Transit ratified a new collective bargaining agreement on Aug. 15. The contract calls for a wage increase of 12.3 percent over the term and expires at 2017's end, according to a press release issued by the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference. The agreement followed 20 months of bargaining that began in 2012.

Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon has selected GlobeSherpa to design, build, test and deploy new mobile applications as part of an electronic fare payment system. As part of the eFare project, GlobeSherpa will work with INIT Innovations in Transportation Inc. to deliver an account management mobile app for riders to manage their smartcards; a contactless inspector application for fare enforcement to use to inspect smartcards and contactless bank cards; and a tap and pay feature.

Hamburg-based VTG Aktiengesellschaft announced that revenue in the rail-car division rose by 2.5 percent to 173.2 million euros during 2014's first half compared with the same period a year ago. Many new rail-car builds in the division particularly helped the company develop and stabilize the group's business, according to a VTG press release. About 800 new cars and investments of more than 100 million euros enabled further expansion of the car fleet during the period.

Parsons Brinckerhoff named Jason Tell a senior planning manager in the Portland, Ore., office, where he will manage transportation infrastructure policy, planning, and design projects. He also will assist public agencies on funding issues, public and political support, policy, and implementation strategies for complex transportation projects. Tell has more than 20 years' experience working on transportation policy, funding and infrastructure projects. Prior to his recent appointment, he worked at the Oregon Department of Transportation since 1996.

David Begg has been named to Cubic Transportation System's advisory board. An authority on transportation, Begg regularly advises United Kingdom government officials on road, rail and airport infrastructure projects. He also serves as a non- executive director of Heathrow Airport Holdings Ltd., and is a visiting professor in sustainable transport at Plymouth University in England.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/22/2014