Spain became the latest state to sign the Luxembourg Rail Protocol to the Cape Town Convention on November 10, with ratification planned for 2022. ‘This marks a major milestone in our work to open the Spanish rail sector to private finance, leading to a more dynamic and competitive industry’, said Professor Teresa Rodriguez de las Heras Ballell, co-chair of the Rail Working Group’s Spanish Contact Group. The European Union, Luxembourg, Sweden and Gabon have now ratified the protocol, while France, Germany, Switzerland, Mozambique, Italy, Spain and the UK have signed it and Kenya, Malta, Ethiopia, Finland, Ukraine, Mauritius and South Africa are working on adoption.

Dellner Bubenzer Group has acquired Frimatrail Frenoplast, a Polish producer of friction materials for rolling stock. ‘Dellner Bubenzer’s ambition to become the world’s leading supplier of brakes and related power transmission products requires us to constantly develop ourselves and our offerings’, said the Swedish company’s CEO Marcus Åberg. ‘By bringing the expertise of Frimatrail Frenoplast into our group, we will now be able to develop our product portfolio and market by entering the rail brake market.’ Frimatrail Frenoplast CEO Jacek Bułhak said ‘co-operation with such a recognised partner brings many benefits — we will be able to improve our R&D performance, optimise costs and gain access to new markets.’

Alstom has inaugurated its largest component manufacturing facility in Asia, at Coimbatore in India. Activities include integration and testing of traction and auxiliary converters, cubicles, driver desks and wiring looms; the facility is to supply Alstom sites in India and around the world .’Our presence in Coimbatore dates to the 1970s and since then we’ve grown multifold. The opening of this facility is a testament of our commitment to the government’s flagship Make in India and Atmanirbhar Bharat initiatives’, said Alain Spohr, Managing Director of Alstom India.

RSI board

The US Railway Supply Institute has appointed Patty Long as its President. Long brings over 25 years of executive experience in trade associations, most recently as interim CEO and Chief Operating Officer of the Plastics Industry Association. ‘This is an exciting time’, said RSI Chair Jack Isselmann. ‘Patty’s expertise, energy and experience, combined with the recent enactment of the Infrastructure, Investment & Jobs Act, brings renewed vitality to RSI’s mission to serve the rail supply industry.’

Auxo Investment Partners has entered the US rail services sector with the acquisition of infrastructure maintenance company Genesis Rail Services. Cody Harman, son of founder Jeff Harman, will retain a minority stake and continue to run day-to-day operations. ‘With Auxo as a partner, our goal is to eventually provide maintenance of way and mechanical services to every Class I and Class II railroad in the country’, he said. Advisers and lenders on the transaction included Miller Johnson, Barnes & Thornburg, BDO USA, Marsh & McLennan, Aon, Strategies Wealth Advisors, Krauter & Co, Thomas Brady & Associates and Miedema Appraisals.

Alstom has appointed Volkan Karakılınç as Managing Director in Turkey. He was previously Business Development Director for the country, and before joining Alstom he was Commercial Director at CAF Signalling.