Europe: The Railcert BV subsidiary of TÜV Süddeutschland and Holland Railconsult has been approved by the Netherlands Ministry of Transport as a Notified Body able to certify compliance with EU Directive 96/48 on the interoperability of high speed rail systems.

The European Commission has approved the takeover by Siemens of three divisions from Germany’s Mannesmann group. These include the Dematic crane business and the Sachs arm supplying suspension components.

Vossloh System-Technik of Germany is to open new branches in Zürich and Wien this month, and a fourth German office in Duisburg to complement established branches in Kiel, Berlin and München. VST is currently installing a passenger information system at Basel’s SBB and SNCF stations in collaboration with Ascom Fahel.

Great Britain: Pell Frischmann has acquired the consultancy De Leuw Rothwell Ltd and its joint venture interest in De Leuw Knight Piésold. The transaction includes offices in Bishop’s Stortford, Workington and Dublin.

Walsall-based controls supplier Craig & Derricott has been named preferred supplier of on-train electrical systems to INBIS Railway Engineering & Design under a five-year co-operation agreement.

Tritax has acquired a majority shareholding in ICS Group plc, whose subsidiaries include Transmitton Ltd, a supplier of turnkey Supervisory Control & Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems.

Consultancy MVA has formed a new transport software company with Urban Analysis Group of the USA. Jointly owned by the two partners, the new company incorporates MVA’s TRIPS Software Unit.

International: US-based radio control supplier Cattron Group Inc has signed an agreement to purchase Theimeg GmbH, which will be restyled Cattron-Theimeg. The German company has provided more than 6000 locomotive remote control systems around the world, complementing Cattron’s industrial and mining applications.

Ireland: The Lord Mayor of Dublin attended a reception on October 5 to mark the opening of a new office by consultants Parsons Brinckerhoff. The company is assisting with the introduction of eight-car trains on the DART suburban network, and providing safety and risk management services for the LUAS light rail Line A.

Italy: Atlas Copco has signed a partnership agreement with SAB WABCO Italia SpA, under which it will supply compressors for SAB WABCO air braking systems.

Poland: Bumar Fablok SA has formed a joint venture with Knorr-Bremse Schienenfahrzeuge GmbH of Germany to supply braking products from both companies to the Polish market. It will also provide customer support including design and engineering consultancy.

Switzerland: Bombardier Transportation has opened an office in Bern, confirming the company’s commitment to Switzerland according to President, Atlantic Europe, Jacques Lamotte.

USA: ABC-NACO Inc expects savings of over US$40m a year in annual operating costs through the introduction this year of Advanced Precision Technology. Combining design optimisation with manufacturing simulation and continuous improvement techniques, APT is expected to cut 1200 posts and enable the company to close its Melrose Park, Illinois, plant. The brake shoe manufacturing facility in Baltimore is to be sold.

RailWorks Corp announced on September 26 that it had terminated its agreement to purchase the Transportation Systems Group of United Industrial Corp (RG 10.00 p676). The company said that the termination of sale talks ’would serve the best interest of RailWorks Corp and its shareholders’.

Wagon leasing and services specialist GE Capital Rail Services has launched a new Customer Connection web site to give customers access to real-time information about their fleets, at

Diesel engine manufacturer Caterpillar Inc has established a Railway Power Systems business unit to supply ’integrated power systems solutions’ for locomotives, multiple-units, track maintenance machines and train heating and lighting applications.

Connecticut-based freight transport consultants Reebie Associates has acquired the A & L Associates consultancy from Cambridge, Massachusetts. Founded in 1987, A&L supplies rail equipment maintenance and planning technologies and transport service planning.