Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane

Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane S.p.A. (previously Ferrovie dello Stato), (English: Italian State Railways) is a state-owned holding company that manages infrastructure and services on the Italian rail network.[2]

Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane S.p.A.
IndustryRail transport
PredecessorImperial Royal Austrian State Railways 
Founded1 July 1905 (1905-07-01) Rome
FounderGovernment of Italy 
Key people
Gianfranco Battisti (CEO), Gianluigi Vittorio Castelli (Chairman)
ProductsPassenger and rail freight transport, rail infrastructure management
OwnerMinistry of Economy and Finance (Italy)
Number of employees
  • 74,436 (2017)[1]

One of the subsidiaries of the company, Trenitalia, is the main rail operator in Italy, and another, TrainOSE, is a rail operator in Greece.[3]


Early years

Ferrovie dello Stato (State Railways) was instituted by an act on 22 April 1905, taking control over the majority of the national railways, which were private until then. The president was nominated by the government. The first Director General was Riccardo Bianchi.[4]

With the rise of Fascism, a centralization policy was carried out. The board of directors and chief administrator office were abolished at the end of 1922. The institution was administered by a commissioner, appointed by the King until April 1924. Since then, Ferrovie dello Stato was managed by the newly born Ministry of Communications (including rail transport), under Costanzo Ciano.[4]

After the armistice on 8 September 1943, Italy was divided and train operations were separately directed too, with headquarters in Salerno for the south and Verona for the north. At the end of 1944, the Ministry of Communications was split and the new Ministry of Transport was created, including the general management of Ferrovie dello Stato, and in 1945, the company was renamed Azienda Autonoma delle Ferrovie dello Stato.[4]

From World War II to 1985

The period after World War II was particularly tough for Ferrovie dello Stato, since most of the Italian rail network was severely damaged and the rolling stock was obsolete. The network was rebuilt almost entirely by 1952. Since then, a period of renewal started. New trains were introduced, among them the ETR 300, and many sections of the national network were electrified and sometimes doubled.[5]

In 1957, the new ALn 442/448 multiple unit was introduced, greatly reducing travel time on the Italian network. During these years, the rolling stock was generally renewed and expanded with the mass construction of electrical and diesel multiple units, like the Ale 883, ALe 840 and ALn 772. The FS ALn 668 diesel multiple unit was introduced in 1956. In the following years, 3 MU out of 4 were 668, which replaced many older units. Many electrical multiple units were also introduced during this period, like the ALe 601, progenitor of the Ale 801/940 and ALe 803 EMU, still in use today on regional service.[6]

During the 1970s, electronic cars were first introduced on the Italian network, starting with the G.A.I. trains for regional and metropolitan service.

The new E.444 was the first attempt on high-speed rail, with a top speed of 200 km/h (120 mph). The ETR 401 (1976) was the first prototype of the new Pendolino class. Following other network improvements, works for the first Italian high-speed rail line started in these years. The Direttissima line from Florence to Rome was partially opened in 1986 and concluded in 1992. In 1986, trains were travelling the line at 200 km/h (120 mph), surpassing for the first time the previous maximum limit of 180 km/h on the Italian network. In 1988, the ETR 450 Pendolino was travelling regularly at 250 km/h (160 mph), today's top speed on the line. The line was the fastest in Europe after the French TGV lines.[7]

The old logo was renewed in 1982 and again in 1994, with the introduction of the XMPR[8] livery.

The FS was left unchanged in its administrative structure until the end of 1985. From the following year, after 80 years, the Azienda Autonoma delle Ferrovie dello Stato was replaced by a new company, Ferrovie dello Stato.[9]


The newly born Ferrovie dello Stato underwent major structural transformations between 1986 and 1992. The workforce was reduced to half: from 216,310 employees in 1988 to 112,018 in 1999.[10] Divisions were created to rationalize the management. The company was privatized in 1992 with the creation of the new Ferrovie dello Stato SpA, a joint-stock company, following a European guideline. However, the privatization was only nominal, since shares were still owned by the Italian Government.[11]

On 1 June 2000, the company's two main divisions, service and infrastructure, were separated and two different independent companies were created: Trenitalia, responsible for transport service, and Rete Ferroviaria Italiana, responsible for the management of the rail infrastructure. Both companies were still subsidiaries of Ferrovie dello Stato Holding SpA.[12] In 2011 Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane bought the German Netinera.

In July 2016 Busitalia (part of Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane) purchased the Dutch company Qbuzz. In February 2017 Trenitalia bought from National Express the British Train operating company c2c. In September 2017, an agreement to buy 100% of TrainOSE (the Greek railways) for €45 million was signed.[3]

Company structure



Trenitalia is the most important subsidiary of the company, as it manages all the trains of the company group. Trenitalia is the primary train operator in Italy. It was established in 2000 following a European Union directive on the deregulation of rail transport.[13][14]

TrainOSE and others

Other company subsidiaries include TrainOSE, the sole operator for passenger and freight services in Greece, which is under the company's management since 2017,[15] Busitalia, Centostazioni, Fercredit, Ferservizi, FS Logistica, FS Sistemi Urbani, Grandi Stazioni, Italferr, Netinera, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana, which manages the infrastructure of the Italian rail network, and Mercitalia, the group's freight operations subsidiary, founded in 2017[16]

Ferry service

Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane owns and operates a ferry service for rail trains connecting the mainland to Sicily, crossing the Strait of Messina. They carry InterCity, InterCityNotte and goods wagon by means of ferry boats.

Until 2009 there was another ferry service for freight transport, which was activated in 1961 to connect the continent to the Sardinia, between Civitavecchia and Golfo Aranci. Since 2010, after the regular service has been suspended, there is an on-call service for Messina Marittima and Villa San Giovanni Mare railway station|Villa San Giovanni Mare.

Former CEOs

The former company CEOs were: Lorenzo Necci (1989–1996), Giancarlo Cimoli (1996–2004), Elio Catania (2004–2006), Mauro Moretti (2006–2014), Michele Mario Elia (2014–2015), and Renato Mazzoncini (2015–2017).


Italian Court sentence due the Viareggio deadly accident

Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane has been sentenced by the Italian authorities for the 29 June 2009 accident in Viareggio, Italy, where 32 passengers died.[17]

See also


  1. "Annual Financial Report 2017" (PDF). Rome: Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane. 27 March 2018. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  2. "Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane". fsitaliane.it. Archived from the original on 13 May 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
  3. "Greece completes sale of railway operator to Italy's Ferrovie". Reuters. Retrieved 18 August 2018.
  4. Giorgio Stagni. "100 anni di storia delle FS - Parte 1". miol.it. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  5. Giorgio Stagni. "100 anni di storia delle FS - Parte 1". miol.it. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  6. See "L'elettrificazione delle FS" (1961), published by the Ferrovie dello Stato.
  7. "stagniweb/FS102". miol.it. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  8. Livrea XMPR in Italian Wikipedia
  9. "LEGGE 17 maggio 1985, n. 210, Istituzione dell'ente "Ferrovie dello Stato"". Italian Government. Retrieved 31 December 2011.
  10. "Le Ferrovie dello Stato SpA. Anni '90: l'inizio di una nuova ristrutturazione". Il lungo treno della privatizzazione: da Ferrovie di Stato a ferrovie di libero mercato. Trent'anni di trasformazioni raccontate dai ferrovieri. Storia e Futuro. Archived from the original on 20 April 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
  11. "Le Ferrovie dello Stato. Società di trasporti e servizi per azioni". Il lungo treno della privatizzazione: da Ferrovie di Stato a ferrovie di libero mercato. Trent'anni di trasformazioni raccontate dai ferrovieri. Storia e Futuro. Archived from the original on 20 April 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
  12. "Le ferrovie di mercato". Il lungo treno della privatizzazione: da Ferrovie di Stato a ferrovie di libero mercato. Trent'anni di trasformazioni raccontate dai ferrovieri. Storia e Futuro. Archived from the original on 20 April 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
  13. "Trenitalia Trains (Italy), Trenitalia Train Tickets and Info". ItaliaRail.com. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  14. "Trenitalia". fsitaliane.it. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  15. "FS Italiane Now Owns Greek Railway Operator Trainose". Retrieved 26 July 2017.
  16. "FS launches new Mercitalia freight division". International Railway Journal. 12 January 2017. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  17. "Strage di Viareggio, pubblicate le motivazioni della sentenza". inmarcia.it. Retrieved 21 August 2018.


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