After 14 regional airports and Piraeus Port Authority, Greece’s leftist-led government confirmed its third privatization project on Thursday – against the odds – approving the sale of railway service company Trainose to Italy’s Trenitalia.
The governing board of state privatization fund TAIPED yesterday accepted the sole offer made by Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane (widely known as Trenitalia) for 100 percent of Trainose. The Italian company bid 45 million euros and was selected as the preferred bidder. If all goes well, the transaction will be completed within 2016.
According to its statement on Thursday, TAIPED accepted Trenitalia’s offer after taking into account the favorable opinion of its consultants regarding the validity of the offer on the table, the two assessments made by two separate consultants, and the positive opinion by the Experts’ Council.
Sources say that both assessments TAIPED received concerning Trainose were below the price that Trenitalia offered, and it is in fact the first time since TAIPED was founded that it has not had to ask for an improved price in a major tender with only one bidder.
On Thursday the head of Trenitalia’s international activities, Renato Mazzoncini, assured TAIPED board members and the Experts’ Council that the Italian company intends to develop Trainose, while he stressed that Trenitalia wishes to work with the cooperation of both existing employees and Greek society.
Crucially, Mazzoncini added that Trenitalia is also interested in Rosco, the Greek railway maintenance company that failed to attract any suitors in its first privatization tender. A new tender is expected to be announced in the next few days.
Sources add that the Italian officials have further said they have more plans for Greece, with market professionals estimating that Trenitalia could enter the development of railway infrastructure or even seek the management of the planned Thessaloniki metro.