AXTONE: Advent International has announced the sale of freight rolling stock buffer and shock aborber manufacturer Axtone to private equity firm IK, which is making its first investment in both the rail and central European markets with the purchase.

Advent bought Polish firm Kamax in 2006, and simultaneously acquired German buffer and coupling firm Keystone Bahntechnik. The two companies were integrated under the name Axtone, and the combined business has grown to produce expected revenues of €70m in 2008, with customers across Europe and a growing presence in Asia.

Detlef Dinsel, Managing Partner at IK, said he looked forward to developing the company into a global leader in railway shock absorption technology. 'Our intention is to apply IK's successful buy-and-build strategy and to capitalise on growth opportunities as rail networks are expanded and modernised in many countries. '