Petr Kellner’s PPF Buys Skoda Transportation GroupMatt Atlas
Prague, April 25 (CTK) – PPF investment group has completed the purchase of 100 percent in Skoda Transportation engineering group, including further assets linked with its activities, and made several changes to the group’s management, naming Petr Brzezina its new CEO and board chairman, PPF told CTK today.
Members of Skoda Transportation board of directors Tomas Ignacak and Zdenek Svata and Skoda Electric company director Jaromir Silhanek stay on the board. CFO Jan Menclik will become the board’s fifth member.
Skoda Transportation with over 5,300 employees is the biggest company active in transport engineering in Central and Eastern Europe. It manufactures rail vehicles including trams, locomotives, metro units and trolleybuses.
The group has a few subsidiaries in the Czech Republic, including Skoda Electric, Skoda Vagonka and Pars nova, and other companies in Germany, Finland, the USA, Poland, Hungary and Russia.
PPF group of entrepreneur Petr Kellner invests in a number of sectors, including banking and financial services, insurance, real estate, agriculture, and biotechnologies. It operates in Europe, Russia, Asia and North America.
Brzezina worked on several managerial positions in ABB international technology company in the Czech Republic, Sweden and Belgium. Then he spent 14 years in Alstom international group in Germany and the Czech Republic where in the post of CEO he was in charge of Western Europe and later of Eastern Europe.
In 2008 to 2015, he was Alstom’s president for the Czech Republic and Slovakia with focus on transport and energy equipment. He also worked in General Electric where since 2016 he was board chairman and CEO of OHL ZS builder which underwent reorganisation under his management.
Ladislav Chvatal, chief officer for strategic projects in PPF, who is at the same time new chairman of the company’s supervisory board, said that Skoda Transportation is a strong brand with a long tradition and good reputation in the whole world.
“We at the same time have here a huge value added in people, their technical knowledge and experience. I believe that with a correctly picked strategy, effective management and use of our international experience, Skoda Transportation has a good future,” he said.
Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC) from China was considered a favourite among the investors interested in Skoda Transportations’s takeover for almost a year.
Then Germany’s Siemens entered the game. Czech media also reported at the beginning of November, citing unnamed sources, that EPH group of billionaire Daniel Kretinsky would buy Skoda Transportation.