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Spain’s national rail operator Renfe has announced a strategic partnership with Czech rail operator Leo Express to expand offerings across Central Europe.

According to recent reports, Renfe president Raül Diaz has secured an agreement in Prague with Peter Köhler, CEO of Leo Express Czech Republic, on a cooperative expansion plan in Central Europe.

The two operators agreed to seek and develop both commercial open-access services and public tender services, with the goal of increasing their business by up to 80%.

As recently reported, Diaz signed the deal during a three-day visit to Prague, during which he saw the functioning of Leo Express and spoke with the Czech government.

This agreement extends the relationship between both companies, which saw the Spanish carrier acquire 50% of the operator Leo Express in 2021, following the capital increase of the Czech company.

As stated by Renfe, the entry into the capital of Leo Express was a strategic operation, allowing an extended presence in three European countries (Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland) and further access to the German market.

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By GlobalData

Alongside this, the partnership enables Renfe to bid on future PSO bids in the aforementioned areas via Leo Express.

Renfe stated the advantages that Leo Express holds when entering new markets: “[Leo] has the local implementation capacity, experience, equipment, or references in these countries, which are often essential to be able to bid.”

The strategic partnership will also align with Renfe’s 2028 goal, which intends for 10% of income to originate from outside of Spain by 2028.