Information published on 16 April 2013 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 341.

European wagonload production alliance “Xrail” appoints new CEO

  • Freight

Xrail has announced the appointment of Sassan Rabet as its new Chief Executive Officer. Sassan Rabet, currently Deputy CEO of Xrail, is taking over the position from 1 May 2013.

Concerning the appointment of Mr Rabet, Ferdinand Schmidt, Chairman of Xrail, also Chairman of the UIC Freight Forum, said “we could not have selected a better person for the position.” “With his specific in-depth experience in the rail freight industry, including several leading positions at SBB Cargo, we are confident that Mr Rabet is the right person to further develop the Xrail Alliance.” “I am looking forward to continue enhancing the Xrail Alliance and to contribute to a significant and sustainable improvement of the European wagonload segment in close cooperation with the alliance partners. I believe that we have some very exciting prospects ahead of us”, said Sassan Rabet.

The Xrail management change will take place on 1 May 2013. “On this occasion I would also like to express my gratitude to Guenther J. Ferk who took on the challenge of developing the wagonload alliance in 2008 and who has been leading Xrail ever since”, said Ferdinand Schmidt. “Under Mr Ferk’s leadership, Xrail has been successfully positioned on the European railway map. The implementation of alliance standards between the seven partners provides customers with enhanced reliability and transparency for international wagonload transport”, added Mr Schmidt.

Ferdinand Schmidt continued, “on behalf of all alliance partners, I wish Mr Ferk the very best for the future. The focus of Xrail will not change with this management change. We will proceed with our current strategy, which is to create added value for our members and their customers by improving the quality and transparency of international wagonload traffic.” Sassan Rabet, born in 1972, holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy and Management. He joined the railway industry in 2001 and worked in the fields of strategy, business development, product management and business process reengineering, before joining Xrail.

The X rail initiative was launched in 2007 in Paris under the auspices of UIC. Under UIC coordination the alliance partners defined together the international production standards, the indispensible IT systems and measures aiming to improve quality. They also finalised in the frame of UIC the contract to form this new alliance in the field of rail freight transport. Xrail implements a cross-border production standard which benefits wagonload customers in three areas: reliability (at least 90% in international wagonload traffic on the Xrail network), transparency (international timetables from customer siding to customer siding, active information systems) and offer process (standard response time of three days maximum). In September 2010, the involved operators created Xrail S.A. as a company with offices in Brussels.

UIC is globally involved in freight issues (including wagonload status) and its activity aims to increase revenues of UIC members by improving the competitiveness of international products and services, reducing UIC member costs by harmonising international business, operational and information processes and developing freight corridors and reinforce confidence of customers in rail. These objectives can be achieved by organising knowledge transfer among members and from other industries with benchmarking, workshops, conferences as well as establishing permanent links with strategic partners in the supply chain (intermodal operators, freight forwarders). For more information about Xrail and wagonload traffic please visit:

For more information about Xrail and wagonload traffic please visit: