The 2011/07/07 at 14:39
As a 100 % subsidiary of the Eurotunnel SA group listed on the stock exchange, Europorte is a rail freight specialist, itself made up of six subsidiaries. Europorte France is in charge of rail freight transport; Europorte Services takes care of the operation of the Great Autonomous Port of Dunkerque; Europorte Proximité looks after the operation and management of train circulation over short distances at reduced traffic. As for Europorte Channel, this was the first French operator (aside from the SNCF) to obtain, in February 2004, a permit from public powers authorizing it to develop railway services throughout the European Union. Meanwhile, Socorail specializes in railway handling. Finally, GB Railfreight, the number three rail freight operator in the United Kingdom, bought from FirstGroup in June 2010, enables the Europorte group to complete its panel of services and to establish a genuinely European offer. Europorte thus reached its definitive structure less than one year ago. “The six companies now making up Europorte are perfectly complementary and today, the group has reached a balanced structure,” states Pascal Sainson, Chairman of Europorte. The group offers services for major lines as well as industrial railways or the maintenance of infrastructures and locomotives… The business, relying on 1,000 collaborators, achieved a 2010 turnover of 98 million euros, expected to rise strongly chiefly thanks to the acquisition of GB Railfreight, whose 2010 turnover came to 57.2 million pounds.
Europorte pulls out all stops to better meet the needs of its clients. “We offer our clients tailor-made services,” indicates Pascal Sainson. In a majority of cases, Europorte offers its clients dedicated staff whose constant aim is to offer as close support as possible. “Each of our developments, recruitments, materials purchases, is motivated by the desire to meet a particular needs expressed by a client,” explains the Chairman. Since the opening up to competition of French railway operations, Europorte has been able to lease train paths from RFF (French Railway Network). Europorte France was the first private rail company to sign with RFF, on 28 October 2010, a quality agreement on train paths, attesting to the high level of quality of service and punctuality desired by Europorte.
Europorte already operates in a number of European countries. “We have the capacity to meet the needs of international clients,” specifies Pascal Sainson. Europorte thus undertakes, for one of its client businesses, transport of goods from Great Britain to Italy via France. With the acquisition of GB Railfreight, this international activity is on the way to further development. “Today, our network covers a majority of great English and French railway connections,” specifies the Chairman. Real railway hubs have thus been set up in Lérouville, Lyon and Dourges. In Lérouville, 40 trains arrive per day, wagons are reassembled and combined, and 40 trains depart for new horizons. This is a system open to all operators, a unique site. Europorte operates new railway hubs if new transport needs are expressed by its clients, as was the case in Dijon during the signing of a contract with the cereal group Cerevia for the transport of 450,000 tons of cereal per year on the Dijon/Fos-sur-Mer axis before cargo is transferred towards the Maghreb from the port of Fos-sur-Mer.
“Compared with road transport, train transport allows many more goods to be transported in less time and more ecologically,” indicates Pascal Sainson. More and more onerous due to the spike in fuel prices, truck transport is becoming less attractive for businesses that are paying more interest in rail for regular liaisons. With a continually growing railway stock and a proportion of electricity-run locomotives, Europorte intends to meet client needs better and better. With this in mind, Europorte ordered twelve Euro 4 000 high-power locomotives. “As a private operator, we are obsessed with the quality of service offered to clients,” states Pascal Sainson. Reactivity, high levels of security, an exemplary social climate and quality of service… these are the assets that clients recognize in this group. And the last word goes to Pascal Sainson: “Europorte is one of the motors of the Eurotunnel group and fully intends to continue on this path!”