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Turnaround of passenger transport provider Arriva Deutschland

Case Study


Arriva Deutschland GmbH was looking for a CFO for its subsidiary Regentalbahn AG at very short notice. It needed to build up strong financial reporting with reliable figures, with the goal of ensuring a successful turnaround and designing cost-reduction measures. 


Atreus succeeded in integrating what was previously a state-owned enterprise into the structures of the internationally active parent Group. Through acquisitions, the company is now on the way to becoming one of Germany’s largest privately owned suppliers.

Interview with Piers Marlow, Managing Director of Arriva Deutschland and Director Northern Europe

What was the situation at your company when you hired an interim manager?

Our collaboration with the Atreus manager began in our company Regentalbahn AG. We were looking for an expert with the necessary experience as CFO in a group structure. 


"Thanks to Atreus quickly filling the position and the knowledge transfer through the interim manager, the division soon stabilized."

You want to know what Atreus can do for you in a similar situation?
Contact Dr. Harald Linné, CEO.

+49 89 452249-200 Harald.Linne(at)

How long did it take Atreus to present you with experts for the position?

Atreus presented us three highly qualified managers within a few days. We were looking for a top-quality financial expert with a broad base of experience in the fields of controlling, reporting and budgeting. We decided to go with a manager who had already worked as financial director and CFO in large, international listed corporations. 

What special tasks awaited the Atreus manager?

She had to hit the ground running. There was no time to get familiar with the situation as the company was in the midst of a transition from a public to a privately owned enterprise. But that was not all. About four weeks into the project, we also parted with the CEO. That left the Atreus manager running and entirely restructured the company in close alignment with Arriva Deutschland GmbH.


"As a result of the excellent collaboration, we hired the Atreus manager as CFO of Arriva Deutschland at our head office in Berlin."

Piers Marlow, Managing Director of Arriva Deutschland and Director Northern Europe

Arriva is one of the leading European transport companies, and it continues to grow.

The project at Regentalbahn was scheduled to take six months. That became two years. What happened?

Independent of our great appreciation for the expertise and implementation strengths of the Atreus manager, the reorganization of “Alex” was a true large-scale project. Alex has 65 passenger carriages and 12 locomotives and there were extreme discrepancies between the original business plan and the actual operational figures.

Here too, the Atreus manager succeeded in analyzing the problem and finding the right numbers. We then hired the Atreus manager as CFO of Arriva Deutschland at our head office in Berlin.

Looking back, how would you rate the collaboration with Atreus?

The Atreus manager immediately worked well with the teams at Group Headquarters in England and Arriva Deutschland GmbH. That made it possible for her to deliver the required performance and achieve her objectives. She understood the Group’s structure and was able to drive developments forward and lay the right foundation for building a company that would be ready for the challenges of the future.


"I really came to appreciate the fact that we not only received a highly capable manager, we also gained the entire advisory expertise of the Atreus partners too."

Atreus is the leading interim management provider in Germany and one of the largest in its field in Europe. We solve difficult operational management and transformation problems quickly and reliably. Contact us and find out how we can help you master your situation with management expertise that is available at short notice and that is the perfect fit for you.

Atreus is a co-founder of Globalise – the market’s leading and largest provider of international interim management. Accelerating change and delivering success. Worldwide. Structured as a global group of leading interim management firms, Globalise has the reach to support you in solving your company’s most important issues around the world.