Siemens Mobility has signed a binding agreement to acquire the Netherlands-based rail software provider Sqills for around $651.84m (€550m) including an earn out.

Sqills has created a scalable platform, S3 Passenger, which enables rail and bus operators to use an online booking system instead of legacy reservation systems.

This solution enhances the availability and utilisation of passenger transportation and will now diversify Siemens Mobility’s software portfolio.

Siemens president and CEO Roland Busch said: “The acquisition of Sqills is a perfect example of how Siemens combines the real and digital worlds to empower its customers in their transformation.

“At the same time, Sqills supports our own growth path for digital services and is a great example of applying our capital allocation criteria through targeted acquisitions. It also fits perfectly to our recently announced focus on generating recurring revenue through resilient business models such as software-as-a-service.”

S3 Passenger, jointly with Hacon, eos.uptrade, Bytemark and Padam Mobility, will come under the interconnected software portfolio following this deal.

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Siemens Mobility stated that Sqills complements its software portfolio and will enable the customers’ Mobility as a Service (MaaS) offerings.

Sqills board member and co-founder Bart van Munster said: “Joining Siemens Mobility’s growing business and software portfolio for intermodal and connected travel is a tremendous opportunity that allows Sqills to advance its plans to expand beyond Europe into Asia Pacific and the Americas, as well as its ongoing investment in team, product, and existing long term operator partnerships.”

The software company will be operated as a separate business entity and wholly-owned subsidiary of Siemens Mobility.

Siemens Mobility stated that the transaction is anticipated to be EPS accretive pre-PPA in the second year after closing.

Subject to customary conditions, the deal is expected to conclude in Q1 2022.

Last month, Siemens Mobility signed a memorandum of understanding to test a hydrogen-powered train in the German state of Bavaria.