The Plzeň-based transport group Škoda Transportation described 2013 as a transition year. The follow-up in 2014 turned out to be a record breaking one for production and sales with the company’s ambitions widening from its traditional strongholds in Central and Eastern Europe.
The Škoda Transportation group, the biggest transport engineering company in Central Europe, boosted sales by around 12 percent in 2014 to total 16.4 billion crowns from 14.6 billion crowns in 2013. Net profit climbed to 2.27 billion crowns from 1.75 billion crowns.
In several respects, 2014 was a record year for the Plzeň-based group. They produced 103 low- floor trams and 300 trolleybuses. Key contracts also included a 1.1 billion contract to deliver drives and motors for 40 metro trainsets for the city of Suzhou, the contract for 20 battery driven trams for the Turkish city of Konya worth 800 million crowns, and 30 trams for the city of Bratislava worth 2 billion crowns. Exports totalled 67 percent of sales.
Last year Škoda Transportation recruited 200 more workers, taking the overall workforce to around 4,800. Most of the new recruits were added at Škoda Transportation’s Plzeň plant which employs 1,900. The total workforce is expected this year to stay stable at near current numbers. Škoda Transportation has traditionally targeted most of its sales towards Central and East European markets. Increasingly though it is looking to win major orders in Western Europe and has already this year bid for several significant contracts. One of the biggest this year will be the contract for six six-unit electric carriages being sought by train passenger operator Deutsche Bahn.
So far in the first five months of 2015, Škoda Transportation has secured orders worth five billion crowns on its home Czech market and abroad. Joint venture projects have already been established abroad, in China, Russia, and Hungary.
As well as the traditional engineering company, Škoda Transportation; the group also comprises traction and engine producer, Škoda Electric; rail vehicle manufacturer Škoda Vagonka; and rail vehicle moderniser and repairer Pars Nova.
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