One of the most esteemed global bus and coach manufacturers is in deep financial trouble.

Van Hool is a brand name that may not be overly familiar to Australians, however in Europe and North America it is not uncommon to see products from the Belgian brand.

But despite that, OEM Van Hool has been declared bankrupt by the Commercial Court in Belgium.

According to media reports the company had accumulated a debt of €400 million (about 650 million Australian Dollars).

Some long-running family inheritance issues have also hurt the bus and coach manufacturer’s coffers.

And the financial situation has prevented Van Hool from completing a slew of orders from operators across the globe.

But there is some potential light at the end of the tunnel for Van Hool with new owners set to take over the operation.

A partnership between Netherlands-based bus manufacturer, VDL and Germany-based semi-trailer manufacturer Schmitz Cargobull has been announced as new owners.

That partnership beat out other potential investors including another well-known Belgian-based business and the dealer group that sells Van Hool in the USA.

The new owners are expected to streamline the Van Hool production facility with potentially large job losses, though at this stage no other firm details on what they intend to do with the brand have been forthcoming.

Established in 1947, Van Hool in recent years has offered a wide range of coaches and transit buses including the TDX Double-Decker.