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KKR supports new locomotive leasing company for Europe

KKR is supporting the development of European Locomotive Leasing (ELL) a provider of full-service locomotive leasing solutions to freight and passenger operators throughout continental Europe.

ELL is led by a team of rail professionals based in Austria and Germany.
The company has signed a framework contract for the order of as many as 50 state-of-the-art Siemens Vectron locomotives. The first locomotives are bindingly ordered today and will be delivered immediately. The additional locomotives will be delivered from 2014 through 2016 and will allow ELL to satisfy the demand from its expanding customer base.
The locomotive leasing sector in Europe benefits from attractive market dynamics. These include rail traffic liberalisation and promotion across the continent, the growing prominence of private rail operators more likely to favour leasing rather than owning locomotives, and an improving macroeconomic outlook.
Johannes Huth, head of KKR Europe, says: “We view the full-service locomotive leasing market as attractive to a new entrant with the right long-term capital structure, management team and fleet of high-performance and environmentally friendly locomotives. We look forward to partnering with the ELL management team to support the development of an infrastructure area that is critical for the growth of the continental European economy.”
Christoph Katzensteiner, CEO of ELL, says: “The modern and versatile Vectron locomotives are particularly well suited to the European market and are proving to be very popular with our lessees. In particular, we are pleased about their built‐in European Train Control System, which allows seamless domestic and cross‐border traffic. This order exemplifies ELL’s mission of providing customers with a full‐service package of best‐in‐class technical performance and operational support.”
KKR is making the investment from its global infrastructure fund. As of March 2014, the firm has made 11 infrastructure investments in Europe and North America.

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