\r\nPPF is owned by Mr Peter Kellner, who is listed as the Czech Republic\u2019s richest person, and the announcement ends months of speculation surrounding the future of the manufacturer. The purchase price has not been revealed by either PPF or CEIL, which has nine separate shareholders all of whom have transferred all of their shares to PPF, but the it is estimated at around Koruna 10bn ($US 469.4m). The transaction is now reportedly awaiting approval by the Czech anti-monopoly office.\r\nKellner says PPF will provide an operating credit to \u0160koda, which is expected to cover the company\u2019s operational needs and has led analysts to speculate that \u0160koda is in a weak financial position. The takeover includes all of \u0160koda\u2019s assets, including real estate used for operation and manufacturing under the \u0160koda trademark.\r\nThe \u0160koda Transportation Group comprises the following companies:\r\n\u2022 \u0160koda Transportation, Plze\u0148, Czech Republic\u2022 \u0160koda Electric, Plze\u0148, Czech Republic\u2022 Movo, Plze\u0148, Czech Republic\u2022 \u0160koda Vagonka, Studenka, Czech Republic\u2022 \u0160koda City Service\u2022 \u0160koda TVC\u2022 Poll, Prague\u2022 Pars Nova, \u0160umperk, Czech Republic\u2022 Lokel\u2022 Transtech Oy, Finland\u2022 Sibelektroprivod, Novosibirsk, Russia\u2022 \u0160koda Transportation, Germany\u2022 \u0160koda Transportation, Baltimore, United States\u2022 Ganz-\u0160koda Electric Zrt, Hungary\r\nMr Daniel K\u0159et\u00ednsky, another Czech billionaire, was reportedly interested in purchasing \u0160koda. However, negotiations stalled as the purchase price was too high. CRRC, China, was also reported to be interested at the end of 2016, but this faded, along with supposed interest from Siemens.\r\n\u0160koda employs 5327 people and has a strong market presence in Central and Eastern Europe. In 2016 the company's revenues were Koruna 15.7bn, a fall of 14% compared with 2015, although profit tripled to Koruna 1.57bn. \u0160koda invests over Koruna 1bn in research and development annually. In 2010 \u0160koda Transportation Group became Skoda Holding, and the following year, \u0160koda Industry, based in Cyprus, became the owner and was renamed CEIL in 2013.\r\nPPF\u2019s portfolio is focused in the finance and banking, insurance, telecoms, real estate and agriculture sectors in Europe, Russia, Asia and North America. Its assets are valued at \u20ac35bn and the holding company employees 155,000 people, of which 9000 are based in the Czech Republic.\r\n\u0160koda dates back to 1859, and the company began producing rail vehicles after World War 1.