An acquisition is referred to as a business transaction in which a company purchases all or part of another company’s stock or assets in order to expand its business reach and gain market share. Ideally, the acquiring company consumes all the managerial control of the acquired company. Typically, large companies acquire small companies but it can be vice-versa also.
How is the rail industry growing globally?
The rail industry is experiencing significant growth globally driven by factors such as urbanisation, population growth, environmental sustainability concerns, technological advancement and greater safety.
In the following article, we have listed some recent acquisitions in the rail sector impacting the global rail industry:
|Wabtec Corporation||L&M Radiator||June, 2023|
|Siemens Mobility||Optrail||June, 2023|
|PSC Group||Steel Line Rail Service||May, 2023|
|Trinity Industries||RSI Logistics||March, 2023|
|Patriot Rail||Delta Southern Railroad||January, 2023|
|Wabtec Corporation||Super Metal||November, 2022|
|L.B. Foster||Skratch Enterprises & Intelligent Video||August, 2022|
|SNCF’S Rail Logistics||Takargo||June, 2022|
|CSK acquire||Pam Am Railway||June, 2022|
- Wabtec acquires L&M Radiator: The deal between Wabtec and L&M Radiator, Inc has been done in June 2023 with the value of $230 million. L&M Radiator makes heavy-duty equipment radiators and heat exchangers and their headquarters are in Hibbing, Minnesota along with operations in the United States, Australia, Mexico, and Chile. L&M’s acquisition will enable Wabtec to create a comprehensive thermal management portfolio that extends and augments Wabtec’s capabilities.
- Siemens Mobility acquires Optrail: The acquisition was completed in June 2023. Optrail is an Italian-based technology company that provides unique algorithms for Traffic Management Systems (TMS) based on mathematical optimization methods and operations research. With this acquisition, Siemens enhances their digital product portfolio focused towards solutions for minimising delays and maximising average speed of trains.
- PSC acquires Steel Line Rail Service- The acquisition was completed in May, 2023. Steel Line Rail Service is a leading provider of mobile railcar repair, inspection and valve maintenance services for the petrochemical, refining, and railcar leasing industries across the United States, Canada and Mexico. Their experience, reputation and expanded scope of service and geographic reach will enable PSC to meet growing industrial needs.
- Trinity Industries acquires RSI Logistics- The acquisition was done in March, 2023 with the price of $70 Million. RSI Logistics is a data centric provider of proprietary software logistics and terminal solutions to the North American rail industry. RSI will expand the breadth and quality of Trinity’s platform, adding logistics services, terminal operations, and intermodal transportation.
- Systra acquires Bamser- Systra Anz announced the acquisition of Bamser in March, 2023 in Sydney. Bamser provides multi- disciplinary services to the transport, utilities, mining and energy sector. Bamser offices are in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria and together with Systra, their clients and partners will benefit from their expanded service offering.
- Patriot Rail acquires Delta Southern Railroad- The acquisition was announced in January, 2023. Delta Southern Railroad (DSRR) comprises of large scale chemical manufacturers and forest industry shippers. DSRR’s lines are located in the Kansas City and Louisian. DSRR acquisition by Patriot will help them to enhance rail customers in the US.
- Wabtec acquires Super Metal- Wabtec signed an agreement in November, 2022 to acquire Super Metal. Super Metal is a supplier of automated vehicles and equipment solutions that support rail transport which is located in Minas Gerais, Brazil, and also complements the Wabtec’s existing manufacturing company in Contagem, Brazil. This acquisition provides Wabtec a robust rail maintenance portfolio in South America.
- L.B. Foster acquires Skratch Enterprises and Intelligent Video- L.B. Foster acquired both the companies in August, 2022. Skratch Enterprises is a leading company in digital systems with advanced digital display technology and Intelligent Video is a developer of high quality surveillance deals with security and safety solutions. This acquisition will further enhance the market portfolio of L.B Foster.
- SNCF’s Rail Logistics arm acquired Takargo- SNCF Rail Logistics acquired Takargo in June 2022. Takargo joined the company in Europe becoming part of Rail Logistics, the division of SNCF group dedicated to logistics and rail freight. The company will support the construction and modernization of the rail network.
- CSK acquired Pan Am Railways- CSk Corporation announced in June 2022 the acquisition of Pan Am Railways which is rapidly growing in the northeast region of the country. This acquisition will further enable CSX’s growth strategy through efficient and reliable freight service and will provide sustainable and competitive transportation solutions to New England and beyond.
The key reasons for acquisitions:
- Expanded product portfolio: Acquisition typically leads to an expanded product portfolio. For example, in the acquisition of L&M Radiator, Wabtec will enhance its product portfolio with heavy-duty equipment radiators and heat exchangers. This expanded offering allows Wabtec to provide a more comprehensive solution to its customers.
- Strategic Move: Companies make strategic moves to place themselves at an advantage over their competitors. For example, in the acquisition between RSI Logistics and Trinity Industry, the combination of a leading rail technology, logistics services and bulk terminal network company with Trinity’s railcar manufacturing, leasing and maintenance service will combine for a powerful solution for freight industry.
- Strengthen position: The manufacturer who is expert in its own field will hold more power post the acquisition. For example,the acquisition of Oprail compliments Siemens Mobility’ existing Train Planning System to strengthen its position as a supplier of software solutions to rail companies. Another example is in the acquisition of Bamser. By combining the strength of Systra in design and Bamser in delivery, their clients gain broader service offerings.
- Enhanced geographic presence: The acquisition accelerates a company’s strategy to expand into international markets. For example when Wabtec acquired Super Metal, it enhanced their maintenance portfolio and offering for their global customers. Companies can grow better and serve their customers internationally in such acquisitions.
- Technology and Innovation: Acquisitions can drive innovation, research and development efforts within any sector. For example, L.B. Foster acquired Skratch Enterprises which brings advanced digital display technology and capabilities. It also offers hardware, software, logistics and warehousing, installation, and managed monitoring leading an enhanced technology offering to their customers.
In conclusion, the acquisition of companies in the rail sector brings about various outcomes, including market consolidation, an expanded product portfolio, geographical expansion, technology and innovation advancement and industry collaboration. These acquisitions play a significant role in shaping the future of the rail industry, driving growth, efficiency and improved connectivity.
Source: Press Releases | Image Credit (representational): Pixabay