Polar Express license holder sues Iowa Pacific

Durango, Colo.-based Rail Events claims $3 million in unpaid royalties; Iowa Pacific questions 'unfair practices'
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DURANGO, Colo. — Rail Events Inc., the company which licenses Polar Express events, is suing Iowa Pacific Holdings for unpaid royalties.

Attorneys for Rail Events allege in court filings in Colorado that Iowa Pacific has failed to pay royalties on events hosted on several of the railroads that it operates as subsidiaries, including the Texas State Railroad in Rusk, Texas; the Saratoga & North Creek Railroad in North Creek, N.Y.; and two railroads in the United Kingdom, among others.

According to documents filed Jan. 11 in Colorado District Court in LaPlata County, Colo., Rail Events officials seek payment for unpaid royalties, court costs, and other amounts the court deems appropriate. Rail Events alleges in one document in the filing that Iowa Pacific owes more than $3 million in unpaid royalties.

According to sample weekly report templates submitted as part of Rail Events’ filings, Iowa Pacific was expected to pay 30-percent royalties on Polar Express ticket sales and 10 percent of the value of souvenir photography sold at Polar Express events.

Rail Events alleges that Iowa Pacific owed $6,393,654 in royalties on ticket sales and merchandize at the end of the 2016 season. Iowa Pacific paid $3,368,730, but $3,024,924 is still outstanding, according to court documents.

Attorneys for Rail Events tell the court that the company sent Iowa Pacific a delinquency notice on Jan. 4 giving the Chicago-based passenger operator five days to pay the amount Rail Events says it is due. Rail Events attorneys filed the lawsuit five business days later on Jan. 11.

“[Iowa Pacific Holdings] is withholding a disputed amount of money due to what we believe are unfair practices related to competition and pricing,” Iowa Pacific’s General Counsel David Michaud wrote to Trains News Wire in an email on Feb. 26.

Michaud wrote that Iowa Pacific filed a response outlining the company’s position on Jan. 24. That document is not yet available from the court.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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