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Industry News in Brief

01 May 2006

Spanish train builder CAF recorded a consolidated net profit after tax of €18·1m in 2005, up 29% on 2004. Turnover was up 18% to €680·8m, and cash flow after taxation reached €23·3m, an increase of 19%. Orders in hand at December 31 2005 stood at €2·7bn, with 27% of this for export.

On March 14 DaimlerChrysler announced the completion of the sale of its Off-Highway business division to Swedish investor EQT (RG 2.06 p98).

Freightliner Group has established Freightliner Maintenance as a traction and rolling stock maintenance subsidiary. It has taken over the assets and staff of LNWR's Leeds Midland Road depot.

Parsons Brinckerhoff announced a restructuring on March 16, consolidating the engineering firm's six operating units into geographical divisions for the Americas and International activities, and an integrated Facilities division.

On April 2 Israel Railways signed an agreement recognising the Association of Israeli Subcontractors as sole representative of the supply and construction industries, simplifying the processes involved in calling around 400 tenders a year worth approximately US$1bn in total.

Swiss railway tunnel and infrastructure surveying and geophysics company Amberg Measuring Technique was renamed Amberg Technologies on April 1.

Novacard, one of the major suppliers of smart cards in Brazil, has signed a deal to license the Jewel low-cost smart card chip from Innovision Research & Technology.

Having grown its rail business at 3% a year for the past five years, to a current orderbook of US$1·7bn, ABB announced last month that it was establishing a specific Railway Customer Segment, headed by Jean Luc Favre. Focusing primarily on electrification and power supply equipment and rolling stock components, the company hopes to accelerate annual growth to between 4% and 5% over the next five years.

Last month Siemens Transportation Systems began building bodyshells for SD160 light rail vehicles at Sacramento, following a $6·5m plant expansion which has added 2300m2 and will provide employment for 70 more staff. With 93 SD160s on order for Calgary, Edmonton and Denver, STS expects to roll out the first locally-built bodyshell in July.

AEA Technology Rail has signed a partnership agreement with the Kelvin Institute and the University of Strathclyde to develop wireless sensor networks for real-time condition monitoring of infrastructure and rolling stock components.