United States Ambassador Jeffrey Bleich and United States Consul
General Aleisha Woodward visited the locomotive commissioning site
today to view the second of 22 locomotives from the CBH Group's new
CBH Group General Manager Operations Colin Tutt said he was
delighted to show the Ambassador the outcome of a powerful
partnership between the CBH Group and Watco WA Rail.
"We are very proud of what we've achieved so far in building a
partnership with Watco as our new rail operator and manufacturing
the most modern efficient locomotives to cart grain in the nation.
It's a pleasure to show them off," he said.
"The first two of our locomotives have landed in WA with another
four on the water sailing towards Fremantle, four travelling across
the US ready for shipping and the rest not far behind. They are
coming thick and fast now."
Watco WA Rail Chief Operating Officer Jim Griffiths said there
was now a strong bond between the growers of Western Australia and
his company's rail industry roots in the United States.
"We've been working with CBH to build the best foundation for a
renewal of the rail industry here and how we can better serve grain
growers, by moving their produce to port more efficiently than ever
before," he said.
The US Ambassador and Consul General took a tour of the
locomotive and inspected the final commissioning works being
completed by Gemco Rail at its facility in Forrestfield. They also
got to speak with MotivePower staff who had traveled from the US to
assist with the new locomotives' commissioning.
US based MotivePower won the CBH Group's tender to manufacture
22 new narrow and standard gauge locomotives.
The first CBH train, comprising of the first new locomotive and
a set of its new wagons, is planned to take to the tracks later
The CBH Group is a Western Australian farmer owned co-operative
controlled by over 4,500 grower-shareholders who plant and harvest
grain grown across the 320,000 square kilometres that comprise the
Western Australian grain belt.
Established in 1933 and now incorporating grain storage,
handling, transport, shipping, marketing and processing, the CBH
Group has developed into one of Australia's leading grain business
with total assets in excess of $1.5 billion and annual revenue of
almost $2 billion.
Its total grain storage capacity is in excess of 20 million
tonnes and handles the Western Australian harvest, averaging 10-12
million tonnes annually and of which around 95 per cent is
exported. A key component of this export task is the rail transport
and logistics of moving grain from CBH's 192 country receival sites
to its four export terminals.
During 2010 the CBH Group tendered its rail transport contract
for the first time, with an aim to develop a new, long term
arrangement for above-rail operations that delivers an efficient,
effective grain transport and logistics service to Western
Australian grain growers.
It also invested $175 million to purchase 22 new locomotives
(built by Motive Power Industries) and 574 new wagons (built by
More information on the CBH Group can be found at www.cbh.com.au.
Watco WA Rail is the CBH Group's new above-rail operator.
It will provide a comprehensive rail logistics service including
train planning and scheduling, tracking, maintenance and inventory
Watco WA Rail has been in existence for just 12 months and has
grown to around 95 staff.
Watco WA Rail has a culture driven by customer service.
Like its parent, the US based Watco Companies Inc, Watco WA Rail's
focus is to put the 'customer first'.
Watco Companies Inc (WCI) is a Pittsburg, Kansas, based
transport company consisting of three main divisions:
transportation, mechanical and transload/intermodal. WCI is the
owner of Watco Transportation Services, Inc. (WTS), one of the
largest short line railroad companies in the U.S. operating 22
short lines on more than 3,500 miles of track throughout the United
It was formed in 1983 from the vision of Dick Webb to create a
rail services company that could align its interests with the
customer in order to best create value over a long term basis.
More information about Watco and its subsidiaries can be found
MotivePower won the CBH Group's tender to build 22 new
locomotives. MotivePower is an industry leader in the design,
manufacture and re-manufacture of diesel-electric locomotives for
the freight rail and passenger transit markets. Since 1972,
the company has delivered more than 2,500 locomotives from its
Boise, Idaho facilities. MotivePower is a subsidiary of
Based in the U.S., Wabtec Corporation is a global provider of
value-added, technology-based products and services for rail and
other industrial markets. Through its subsidiaries, the company
manufactures a range of products for locomotives, freight cars and
passenger transit vehicles.
The company also builds and overhauls locomotives, and provides
aftermarket services. With roots to 1869, Wabtec is a
publicly traded company in the U.S. (NYSE: WAB), and its year-end
stock price has increased for 10 consecutive years.
The company has annual sales exceeding $1.5 billion and
facilities located throughout the world, including operations in
Sydney and Melbourne, Australia.
More information on the MotivePower and Webtec can be found at
www.motivepower-wabtec.com or www.wabtec.com
Since its incorporation, Gemco Rail has grown from a West
Australian Wagon wheel set and bogie repair contractor, to a
vertically integrated national provider of rollingstock
maintenance, rollingstock manufacture, supplier of rollingstock
components and rail maintenance equipment and undertakes bearing
refurbishment through its subsidiary company Railway Bearing
Refurbishment Services (RBRS).
In 2010 Gemco Rail became part of the Engenco group of companies
and was listed on the ASX (EGN). The Gemco Rail group is made up of
Momentum Rail a labour hire and rail Infrastructure Company, CERT a
registerd training organisation that is our railway training
provider and Greentrains a locomotive leasing company.
Today Gemco rail boasts one of the most modern and efficient
rollingstock maintenance facilities within Australia, employing
around 270 full time staff across 5 states.
Media Contact: Claire Armstrong, Media Advisor, CBH
Ph: (08) 9237 9541