This year, on 11 February, the Frankfurt am Main-based Kombiverkehr celebrated half a century of operation.
The company, from whose name the term "combined transport" was most probably coined, was an initiative championed by Georg Leber, at the time West Germany's Minister of Transport, who rounded up a diverse selection of partners (apart from Deutsche Bundesbahn and road hauliers also freight forwarders specialised in transporting furniture) to join forces and shift more cargo from roads onto rails. Sounds familiar?
Kombiverkehr set off with four domestic services for unaccompanied transport. The first international route, to France, was launched in 1970. In the mid-1990s, the company gave birth to the so-called "rolling roads" - the Inglostadt (Manching) Brennersee and Dresden-Lovosice services, as well as introduced the first block trains going between Germany and Italy.
In the financial year of 2007, Kombiverkehr was the first to take care of over 1.0m truck-by-rail consignments.
Nowadays, the company's network links 230 terminals Europe-wide, with 770+ trains dispatched every week.
Alles Gute zum Geburtstag!