The Greenbrier Companies Inc. and Astra Holding GmbH recently have merged to create Greenbrier-Astra Rail, the largest end-to-end freight railcar services business in Europe, encompassing manufacturing, engineering and repair.
"The creation of Greenbrier-Astra Rail extends Greenbrier's commitment to global diversification while providing scale and greater value to our customers in Europe," Greenbrier Chairman and CEO Bill Furman said in a press release. "We are excited to unify the creative and capable management teams from both companies to deliver world-class innovation to our freight railcar customers in Europe and beyond. … We look forward to an expanded presence in Europe, while we also address developing markets in the GCC, Africa and Eurasia."
Greenbrier-Astra Rail will be primarily controlled by Greenbrier, which will have a 75 percent equity interest, while Astra Rail Chairman Thomas Manns will own the remaining 25 percent.
"This transaction is transformational," Manns said. "Our combined operation is better positioned to pursue the growth opportunities offered by the freight car markets in Europe and globally. Greenbrier-Astra Rail will capitalize on the substantial market opportunity in Europe, leveraging our resources to provide the best end-to-end solutions for our customers. Beyond Europe, we will aggressively pursue opportunities in emerging freight railcar markets which we can uniquely access from our Europe-based operations."