Italy: The Invitalia state investment agency and a private fund from the UAE have capitalized Titagarh Firema for the development of production aimed both at Italian and international markets.
Invitalia bought out a 30.3% stake in Titagarh Firema for €10 mln, as well as the Hawk Eye fund from the UAE acquired a 13.6% share for another €4.5 mln. These funds, as well as the €5.4 mln investment from Titagarh Wagons itself, will go to the development of the Italian branch.
Titagarh Firema is the second largest rolling stock manufacturer in Italy, comprising 3 production sites, was acquired by Titagarh Wagons in 2015. It is stated that the new investments should help to optimize the range of produced products, to create a service division, as well as the task to enter export markets is set. The state support is also provided due to the plan for the recovery of Italy after the coronavirus pandemic: a significant stake in it is placed on the development of railway transport.
In recent years, Titagarh Wagons has won several contracts in Italy to supply metro trains for Rome and suburban rolling stock for Catania. The backlog of the Titagarh’s division in Italy is estimated at €500 mln. Investments are required for the implementation of these serial production projects, since the contracts concluded by the previous owners of the asset were unprofitable and practically led the company to bankruptcy.
Aluminum bodied metro train produced by Titagarh Firema for the Pune metro in India. Source: screengrab
The site is also developing as the engineering site of new rolling stock for the Indian market. So, the first 3 trains with an aluminum body are being created in Italy for the metro of Pune, India: a contract for the supply of 102 metro cars was signed with Titagarh in 2019. In India, Titagarh also plans to significantly increase the capacity for the production of metro trains, coupled with the development of the production of freight cars.
It is worth noting that Titagarh cooperates with CRRC in the Indian market. The Chinese manufacturer experienced difficulties in fulfilling its obligations to localize the production of metro cars for Bangalore (216 cars for $240 mln USD, the contract was signed in 2019), in connection with which even the termination of the contract was considered. However, this summer CRRC and Titagarh reached an agreement: the Indian manufacturer will produce steel bodies for CRRC in Kolkata.