Our market-leading rail practice advises clients across the rail industry – ranging from train operating companies, state-owned rail entities, rolling stock owning companies, banks, development contractors and financiers, through to lessors, rolling stock manufacturers, depot operators, local authorities, governments and regulatory bodies – on the full range of rail matters both domestically and internationally.
“The ‘experienced’ department at Norton Rose Fulbright has ‘very good market knowledge, is extremely responsive, and has expert partners’.” The Legal 500 UK, 2015
We can chart our experience back to the privatisation of the UK rail sector in the 1990s. Since then, our practice has expanded to handle substantial rail matters around the world. Our knowledge encompasses every aspect of the rail industry, allowing us to provide our clients with commercial, pragmatic and innovative advice and support.
The global rail industry continues to evolve. Infrastructure investment is set to grow in line with increasing demand for railway services, bringing with it new challenges and opportunities for all participants in the sector. Our in-depth industry knowledge and experience gained from all sides of transactions is enabling us to support our clients throughout this evolution.
Our areas of work include
- asset and lease financing
- corporate finance and privatisation
- dispute resolution and litigation
- employment, benefits, HR and TUPE
- franchising and concessions
- health and safety, environment
- high speed rail
- infrastructure, construction and signalling
- intellectual property, ticketing and technology
- light rail, underground and metro projects
- procurement, competition and rail regulation, including EU law, public law and state aid
- rail regulatory advice
- real estate
- rolling stock supply, leasing, maintenance and refurbishment
- structured finance and securitisation
- track, station and depot access and financing
- traffic management systems
- urban development and planning.
Our recent experience
- Advising the lenders providing senior debt project financing facilities to TransNamib Holdings Limited for the procurement of locomotives and sulphuric acid tankers for the Dundee Precious Metals Tsumeb Acid Plant Project.
- Advising the UK government’s Department for Transport on the re-letting of the Intercity East Coast franchise to Inter City Railways Limited, a joint venture between Stagecoach and Virgin. The East Coast main line had been in public ownership and operated under a service agreement since 2009 but has now been returned to the private sector under this franchise.
- Advising the financiers on the successful ALTRAC Light Rail Consortium bid for the Sydney Light Rail PPP project.
- Advising a consortium member of the Baltic Rail Joint Venture study on behalf of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The joint venture plan consists of the establishment of a structure to build and operate a rail connection between the three Baltic states, Poland and later Finland and Russia.
- Advising SNCF on its participation in the privatisation of Greek national rail operator Trainose.
- Advising the lenders on a €600 million multicurrency secured asset financing of a fleet of approximately 1,000 rolling stock assets comprising both locomotives and wagons based in Europe and leased to over 10 lessees. This multi-jurisdictional cross-border financing involves legal advice in 14 European jurisdictions.
- Advising the region of Waterloo in Canada on the procurement process for their rapid transit project, a new 11km light rail connection between the municipalities of Waterloo and Kitchener.
Awards and accolades
- Tier 1: Rail, Legal 500 UK, 2015
- Tier 1:Transport: Rail: Rolling Stock, UK-wide, Chambers UK, 2016
- Tier 1: Transportation: Rail & Aviation Asset Finance, Germany, Chambers Europe, 2015
- Tier 1: EU Regulatory: Transport, Belgium, Legal 500, 2015
- Tier 1: Transportation: Canada, Chambers Global, 2015
- Tier 1: Transport: Australia, Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2015