Last month RZD and Finmeccanica signed a co-operation agreement for the development of Itarus signalling, telecoms and satellite technology for the rail sector. RZD subsidiary Niias and Ansaldo STS will establish an Itarus-ATS signalling test site in 2009, and trials on major routes will begin the following year before the system is offered for export.

A 50% enlargement of Siemens Transportation Systems’ Sacramento light rail vehicle plant in California is underway to meet current and anticipated demand. 9 290 m2 of factory space is being added at a cost of $26m. The company plans to set up a new machining line by mid-2009.

Reporting results for the third quarter to September 30 2008 on October 23, CAF announced a net profit of €69·5m, up 20% on the year before. Net turnover was up 15% at €719·4m, while the order book was up 21% at €4·01bn of which 50% was for export.

The Saft Power Systems and AEG Power Supply Systems brands have been consolidated as AEG Power Solutions.

International Railway Systems has secured a €100m club loan facility to refinance debt and support growth at its Manufacturing & Engineering Division. It was signed on October 9 with ABN AMRO Bank, Citibank Europe, ING Bank and Piraeus Bank Romania.

The prime ministers of Serbia and Slovakia inaugurated a new production line at Gosa’s Smederevska Palanka plant on October 13. The Serbian government’s 77·5% stake in the rolling stock manufacturer was bought by ZOS Trnava for 140m dinara in January 2007, and the Slovak firm has invested €5m in modernisation. Gosa predicts a record profit of €60m for 2008, with 90% of its work being for export, putting it in the top five Serbian exporters. The company is currently refurbishing passenger cars and producing Eanos bogie wagons for Slovakia.

Ab Ovo and Qnamic have formed a strategic partnership to combine their Rail Cargo System transport management software and RailOpt staff and rolling stock planning package.

Finance and real estate company Aliafin has bought Czech wagon manufacturer Lostr Louny from its eight shareholders. Formed through the privatisation of the state railway’s ZOS Louny workshop in 1992, Lostr supplies new and refurbished wagons to countries including Slovakia, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and France. It has 700 staff, and expects turnover of KC1·5bn this year.