AUSTRIA’s Federal Administrative Court has declared a framework contract from Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB) to Stadler for the delivery of up to 186 double-deck trains to be null and void due to an alleged formal error in the qualified electronic signature of the offer. 

Stadler says it is “surprised” by the court’s decision. “Stadler has already used this electronic signature, recognised by the responsible international authorities, hundreds of times when participating in tenders in the EU,” Stadler said in a written statement. “Numerous offers signed in this way were won, including those from Austrian railways.” 

Stadler says it won the framework contract “following a comprehensive and professionally managed tendering process by ÖBB,” and says that it “is pleased that their legally valid offer was rated as the best technically and commercially.” 

Stadler adds that it will “exhaust all legal remedies to which it is entitled against this first instance decision of the Austrian Federal Administrative Court. Stadler continues to support ÖBB and assumes that the alleged formal error complained of by the court will be corrected.” 

“Due to the court decision, we were not able to award to contract to Stadler,” ÖBB told IRJ. “Currently, we are evaluating the next steps.”