In Austria, more people travel by train than ever » Leadersnet

| Editorial staff

| 28.04.2024

In 2023, almost half a billion (!) passengers traveled with ÖBB. Despite the new record, the company is struggling with some “construction sites.”

ÖBB managed to perform well financially in fiscal year 2023 despite the energy crisis, high inflation and economic downturn. This is shown by the results presented by CEO Andreas Matthä and CFO Manuela Waldner on Friday morning. Head of Corporate Communications & Brand Peter Thier presided over the press conference.

Positive passenger growth

The main reason for this is positive passenger growth: almost 494 million people traveled by train or bus last year, 10.5 percent more than in 2022 and more than ever before. Overall, ÖBB Group was able to make a solid profit in 2023. Earnings before taxes (EBT) were 111.6 million euros and 42.2 percent lower in 2022 (193.2 million euros), although the result is difficult to compare due to a special effect in 2022.

In addition, all subgroups ended in profit in 2023: ÖBB Passenger Transport closed with 109.1 million euros (2022: 158.2 million euros), ÖBB Rail Cargo Group closed with 13 million euros (2022: 7.3 million euros and 7.3 million euros) million euros (2022: -15.7 million euros). euros). Although passenger traffic recorded a record number of passengers, freight traffic, with 26.1 billion net tonne kilometers transported, declined (-8.4 percent) in a sluggish industrial environment. The operational performance of the ÖBB infra network underlines these developments: rail kilometers increased by only 1.3 percent from the previous year to 165.9 million (2022: 163.8 million), which also set a new record.

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“We were able to achieve sustainable profitability even in an economically challenging situation. We owe this to our passengers. Never before have so many people traveled by train and bus in Austria. I am very happy about this arrival and popularity”, says ÖBB CEO Andreas Matthä.

“Despite the difficult economic conditions, it is very pleasing that all sub-groups have completed positively. However, the economic downturn and high electricity prices have put pressure on freight transport. We are investing in intermodal concessions to make the transition to rail more attractive.” ÖBB adds CFO Manuela Waldner.

Passenger boom with negative impact

Although passenger progress has been positive, the increasing number of passengers has affected the timing. By 2023 it was 95 per cent of the overall system (2022: 95.5 per cent). Punctuality in local transport is 95.7 per cent (2022: 96.1 per cent) and in long distance transport it is 80.3 per cent (2022: 81.4 per cent).

Tough economic environment

Rail freight transport faced a massive increase in energy prices, an industrial slowdown and a decline in delivery volumes in 2023: despite this challenging market environment, sales remained stable at around 1.907 billion euros (2022: 1.943 billion euros). Net tonne-kilometres decreased from 28.5 to 26.1 billion.

Investment in infrastructure and trains

In 2023, the group invested 4.5 billion euros (2022: 3.9 billion euros) in the modernization and expansion of railway infrastructure and its fleet. In the area of ​​rail infrastructure, these include expansion of the southern and western lines, further electrification of regional trains and modernization and construction of railway stations and park and ride facilities. The largest infrastructure projects are the Semmering Base Tunnel, Koralmbahn and Brenner Base Tunnel. Investments were focused on power plants and photovoltaic systems.

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Also 672 employees

As on December 31, 2023, the Group has 45,041 (2022: 44,369) active employees both domestically and abroad. That means 672 employees have increased. Like all companies, ÖBB is currently struggling with a shortage of skilled workers. As a new countermeasure, a new recruitment center, the ÖBB Job Shop, is now opening in “The Mall” in Mitte, Vienna. Aspirants can learn more about about 130 different professions. Leadersnet As part of the balance sheet presentation, I wanted to know what the opening hours and headcount looked like. Andreas Matthä answered: “Usually there are two colleagues on site. When it comes to opening hours, we focus on the afternoon from Monday to Thursday so that you can get information after work. We are also open on Monday and Thursday. Morning, Friday 10 am to 2 pm till o'clock.” You can find the exact opening hours Here.

The group is looking for an additional 3,500 employees by 2024 to cope with the current generational shift.

Overview

The projection to 2024 is characterized by the consequences of geopolitical crises and consequent inflation and recession. “We expect the 'rail boom' to continue in 2024. We want to expand and grow ÖBB in line with increasing demand. Micro-transport or software solutions provide growth areas, but also freight and local transport abroad,” Matta concluded.

Leadersnet It was at the press conference. You can get a look here.

www.oebb.at

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