Solaris, which was established in 1996, has been seeking an investor over the past few months and says the contract signed on July 2 allows the two companies to further negotiate the terms of the agreement.

CAF says the acquisition will allow it broaden its offerings in urban transport, helping realise its vision of diversifying its transit portfolio beyond rail. Solaris recorded €444m in revenue in 2017 and its integration into CAF is expected to increase CAF’s revenue to €1.9bn for 2018.

“I am convinced that by selecting CAF as an investor for Solaris, we ensure a promising future for the brand, its clients and its employees,” says Solaris Bus & Coach CEO Mrs Solange Olszewska. “I strongly believe CAF has the right vision for the company and will be able to develop Solaris’ potential on a global scale. I am confident this agreement is fully in line with everything we have achieved since the company was founded 22 years ago and will elevate Solaris to a higher level of development path.”

Solaris has a presence in more than 700 cities in 32 countries and while its main business is diesel and electric busses, it also supplied Tramino LRVs Olsztyn, Lipsk, Poznań, Braunschweig and Jena.

The value of Solaris is estimated to be slightly above €300m, with the final amount to be determined at closing of the transaction based on relevant adjustments. This value results in a PER (price/earnings ratio) for Solaris based on 2018 estimates below CAF’s 2017 ratio.

CAF’s purchase of Solaris’ shares will be funded mainly by additional debt and remains subject to customary closing conditions including the approval of the Polish and German anti trust authorities, due by September.