After Trainose, Italian Rail now eyeing Athens metro


Unlike most company chiefs in Italy, the head of state railway operator Ferrovie dello Stato says he is not too worried about a December 4 referendum that could unseat Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s government.

CEO Renato Mazzoncini said the company would press ahead with plans to spin off its high-speed and long-distance trains business by July and float at least 30 percent of the shares in the second half of 2017, regardless of the outcome of the vote.

“We have not slowed down our work for the listing,” Ferrovie’s Mazzoncini told Reuters in a phone interview on Thursday.

Mazzoncini, who was appointed chairman of the International Union of Railways (UIC) on Thursday, said the company wanted to expand abroad.

After buying Greek railway service company Trainose this year, Ferrovie is looking at the possible privatization of the metro system in Athens.

The Italian firm has also joined forces with Britain’s First Group to bid for the rail service between London and Edinburgh.