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First GBRf and VTG sign new contract for British built HYA coal hoppers 15 January 2009



First GBRf has signed a multi million pound contract with private wagon hire company VTG Rail UK, a subsidiary of VTG Aktiengesellschaft (SCN: VTG999), for the lease of a further 89 HYA coal wagons. Designed by International Rail Services (IRS), the new wagons will be constructed in Britain by wagon builders WH Davis from their workshop at Shirebrook, in Nottinghamshire


Due for delivery from April 2009, the wagons will be of the same design as First GBRf’s existing fleet of HYAs which are well liked by power station and terminal staff and provide higher payloads per wagon length than previous models. 

The new contract marks the first time First GBRf have worked with British firm WH Davis, and comes as First GBRf’s coal services continue to increase, with the number of coal trains reaching record levels in November.


John Smith, Managing Director at First GBRf commented: “I'm extremely pleased that First GBRf's growth continues unabated despite difficult economic conditions. The procurement of these wagons is the next step in our strategic plan to secure a larger proportion of the Railfreight haulage market.

“Having commenced my career constructing carriages at York it is extremely encouraging to see the manufacture of our new wagons being sub contracted to a British firm”


Rob Brook, Managing Director at VTG Rail UK said: “We are delighted to be joining forces with First GBRf to help them increase their coal fleet as we expand our presence within the UK coal market.  Working with wagon-builders WH Davis, we are pleased to be offering coal hoppers that are at the forefront of wagon efficiency, helping First GBRf to continue its impressive delivery rates within the coal sector. ”


Ian Whelpton, Sales & Marketing Director at W H Davis commented: “As probably the last remaining independent UK manufacturer of rail freight wagons, it is an absolute pleasure to have been selected to build state of the art, high capacity hopper wagons in support of the continued expansion of GBRf within the Railfreight coal haulage market and the fleet growth of VTG within the rail wagon leasing business.




About First GBRf


First GBRf is one of the UK's leading specialist rail freight companies, operating a wide ranging portfolio of intermodal and bulk traffic services in commodities such as coal, petrochemicals, mail and parcels, and construction materials. Its innovative approach and focus on flexibility, reliability and customer service has led to a raft of rail industry awards and a number of recent significant contract wins.


About VTG:


VTG Aktiengesellschaft is one of Europe’s leading rail logistics and wagon hire companies. The company has the largest private wagon fleet in Europe. Globally the fleet consists of about 49,300 rail freight cars with a focus on tank cars and state of the art high capacity freight cars and flat cars. In addition to the hiring of rail freight cars, the Group offers global tank container transport and comprehensive multi-modal logistics services mainly around rail transport.


With the combination of its three interrelated divisions Wagon Hire, Rail Logistics and Tank Container Logistics VTG offers its clients a high-performance platform for international transport of their freight. The Group has many years of experience and specific know-how in particular in the transport of liquid and sensitive goods. Its customers include numerous well-known companies from almost all industrial sectors such as, for example, chemicals, mineral oil, the automobile or paper industries.


In the financial year 2007 VTG generated operating revenues of EUR 541.4 million and an operating result (EBITDA) of EUR 137.0 million. Via its subsidiaries and affiliates the company, which has its head office in Hamburg, is mainly present in Europe, Asia and North America. As of 30 September 2008 VTG employed 850 people worldwide in consolidated companies. Since June 2007 VTG AG has been listed on the official Prime Standard market of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange – since September 2008 also on the SDAX (SCN: VTG999).


Press contact:


Andrea Geeson, Communications Manager

Telephone: 01444 473588




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