Wehinger sells Westbahn stake

FOLLOWING his resignation as CEO of Austrian open-access passenger operator Westbahn at the beginning of June, Dr Stefan Wehinger has sold his shares in parent company Rail Holding to the other three shareholders.

Prior to his departure Wehinger, Rail Holding co-founder Mr Hans-Peter Haselsteiner (CEO of construction company Strabag), and SNCF Voyages each owned 25.93% while Swiss investment company Augusta Holding held the remaining 22.21%.

There had been speculation that SNCF Voyages was interested in acquiring all of Wehinger’s shares and thus gain the majority of the company. However it emerged at the end of June that Wehinger’s shares have been divided between the three remaining shareholders, meaning Haselsteiner and SNCF each hold 35%, while Augusta Holding owns 30%.

Westbahn still faces tough competition from Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB), which continues to offer heavily-discount fares on the Vienna – Salzburg route. Westbahn has introduced discounted fares at weekends, but while ridership is reportedly healthy, revenue remains below anticipated levels.

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