Titagarh Wagons bags €220 million order book boost post Italian firm buy

Kolkata (KOAA): Titagarh Wagons’ acquisition of Italian passenger rail engineering firm Firema Trasporti S.p.A has given a €220-million order book boost, said Umesh Chowdhary, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Titagarh Wagons Ltd, at a press conference.

Firema has designs and technology for manufacturing of metro coaches, semi and high-speed trains, propulsion systems such as traction motors and converters, shunting locomotives and trams.

This is the second overseas acquisition of TWL since 2010, when it acquired French company Arbel Fauvet Rail (now Titagarh Wagons AFR). These two acquisitions catapult TWL as a global player in advanced freight and passenger rolling stock technologies.

“Our plan is to synergise the technologies with our low-cost manufacturing capabilities in India,” Chowdhary explained. A large part of TWL’s current order book worth ₹870 crore has come from overseas.

TWL has just begun to utilise Titagarh Wagon AFR’s design and technologies to produce railway freight cars in India for marketing them in Africa. “We also plan to utilise Firema technologies in India. We have decided to upgrade our Uttarpara plant (in West Bengal) for metro coaches and high-speed trains”, Chowdhary added.

Paid-up capital

TWL said on Thursday that it has added ₹3.5 crore to its paid-up capital after raising ₹150 crore through the recent qualified institutional placement. The balance ₹146.5 crore came to the company as a premium.

Chowdhary said that six institutional investors with which 1.51 crore shares were placed would have a combined stake of around 14 per cent in the enhanced paid-up capital of ₹23.5 crore. The promoter stake will come down from 53 per cent to around 47 per cent.

Chowdhary said the proceeds would be used partly for investment in its new Italian acquisition and partly to upgrade its Indian train manufacturing unit. “As of now we have invested €10 million. We have trimmed the workforce of Firema from 501 to 340 and signed an agreement for wage cut. We would require some local borrowing for working capital,” he added.