It’s not everyday that we get to step outside the classroom and discover one of the biggest companies in the locomotive industry, Talgo.
Founded in 1942 by D. José Luis de Oriol y Urigüen, this company has since been in the forefront of speed and comfort, primarily in Spain, expanding to the rest of Europe in the 1960’s and to the US in the 1980’s.
This week our Madrid students visited Talgo headquarters, taking a behind-the-scenes look at the manufacturing process of this now international company. During the visit they learned that the company’s revenue is composed primarily by the maintenance and upkeep required by their clients, rather than actual locomotive sales. This opened our students eyes to the logistics behind an international contract with these characteristics, showing them that it is not only about the product itself, but more so about the quality of service Talgo provides.
It was a truly unforgettable experience, giving every student the opportunity to talk to the Talgo workers, asking every question that came to mind. The locomotive industry may not be one of the trendiest at the moment, but it is definitely one of the most lucrative in Spain and Europe due to its proximity to the city centers, short wait times and more flexible regulations compared to the aviation industry, its main competitor.