Metrans, a subsidiary of Hamburger Hafen and Logistik (HHLA) started operations in Prague 25 years ago. In those 25 years Metrans has become the market leader for container transport between the seaports on the North Sea coast, the Adriatic, and Central and Eastern Europe. Loyal customers and long-standing employees attended the anniversary celebrations in Prague’s historic old town on Thursday evening, October 13, 2016.
In the spring of 1991, the company Metrans was founded with the aim to connect the then Czechoslovakian capital of Prague more closely with the Port of Hamburg by rail. The Metrans’ network forms a close connection between the seaports on the North Sea and the Adriatic Sea and its hinterland. It runs from the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Italy to the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Slovenia, right up to the Turkish metropolis of Istanbul.
Every week approximately 300 trains use this network. The nine inland terminals are points of intersection, from which Metrans transports containers to both seaport-hinterland and, increasingly, continental traffic using its own locomotives and wagons. Hamburger Hafen und Logistik (HHLA) holds just over 90% of the shares in Metrans and will continue to push the strategic expansion of rail activities of the Intermodal subsidiary. After all, the Port of Hamburg does benefit from the growth in container transport by train. The excellent, high frequency and environmentally friendly rail connections with Central and Eastern Europe attract cargo and significantly contribute to the further development of Europe’s largest rail port.
Metrans celebrated their success story with approximately 450 customers and employees last week. After they visited the company’s first terminal, the Prague Metrans terminal, the celebration continued in the grand Municipal House in Prague’s old town in the evening.
Klaus-Dieter Peters, Chairman of the Executive Board of Hamburger Hafen und Logistik: “The satisfactory growth we have seen in our Intermodal segment is mainly driven by our rail subsidiary Metrans. The investments in our own terminals and rolling stock have significantly increased the segment’s value. We can offer our customers a reliable and flexible rail connection to Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. One of the results of this success is our ability to establish a second successful pillar for HHLA as part of our diversification strategy.”
Jiri Samek, Chairman of the Executive Board of Metrans: “The success of 25 years of Metrans is the result of a visionary idea and the implementation of this idea, combined with the partnership with HHLA, the largest terminal operator in the Port of Hamburg. But just as important for the success of our company are our loyal customers and our highly motivated employees. That is why we are celebrating with them today.”
Metrans has become an essential growth driver of the HHLA’s Intermodal segment. HHLA subsidiaries in this segment transported more than 1.3 million standard containers (TEU) in the financial year 2015 and contributed more than 30% to the revenue as well as more than 35% to the operating result (EBIT). Investments in more than 50 locomotives, approximately 2,500 wagons and handling facilities have had a noticeable effect. In the previous year alone, HHLA invested 77.1 million Euros in the strategic expansion of rail activities. Next year, Metrans tenth inland terminal will be opened in the Hungarian capital of Budapest. Currently under construction, the terminal will have a capacity of 250,000 TEU a year. Thanks to its strategic location, it is ideally positioned as an interface between the Northern European seaports, the Adriatic ports and South-Eastern Europe.