Vossloh Kiepe moves to Knorr-Bremse

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The electrical systems business of Vossloh Kiepe has been bought by Knorr-Bremse AG.

Kiepe is a worldwide supplier of electric traction equipment, with a customer base that incudes bus manufacturers as well as tram and train builders – it supplies hybrid and hydrogen-powered systems buses and traction systems for metros and trams.

The sale values Kiepe at €72.5 million, although that includes a €25 million ‘variable component’ which may be subject to adjustment at a later date. The actual sale was agreed back in December 2016, but has now been confirmed following anti-trust investigations.

Kiepe, based in Düsseldorf, is the second of three business units that Vossloh will be selling. The process to dispose of the third unit, Locomotives, will be started over the coming months.

Klaus Deller, chairman of the executive board of Knorr-Bremse, said: “The main benefits for our customers will be the technological advantages generated by greater sub-system connectivity.

“This acquisition will lead to the expansion of not only our rail vehicle systems portfolio but also our commercial vehicle systems offering.

“Given the increasing levels of electrification in the commercial vehicle sector, as a systems supplier for electric buses Vossloh Kiepe opens up new growth opportunities and potential applications in this segment.”

For Vossloh, chief executive Dr. h.c. Hans Martin Schabert stated: “Following long and intensive negotiations with various interested parties, in Knorr-Bremse we have found a financially robust, ideal strategic partner for Kiepe.

“Under the management of its future owner, Kiepe will have great opportunities and new prospects for successful long-term development.”

Report by Nigel Wordsworth