G&W to sell stake in Australian operations as it goes private

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TORONTO — Genesee & Wyoming is pulling out of Australia.

The short line holding company is selling its 51% stake in its Australia operations, which serves New South Wales, the Northern Territory, and South Australia, including the 1,400-mile Tarcoola to Darwin rail line.

The move comes as G&W is being taken private in an $8.4-billion deal led by Brookfield Infrastructure Partners.

G&W is selling its stake to its Australian partner, Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets, which held a 48.9% share of the partnership.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of the year, subject to regulatory approval, alongside Brookfield’s acquisition of G&W, Brookfield executives said during the company’s second quarter earnings call on Friday morning.

Brookfield says the company aims to maximize commercial opportunities on G&W lines, continue to expand through acquisitions, and improve profit margins on G&W’s current railroads through a combination of revenue growth and cost-cutting.

G&W operates 120 railroads in North America and also has operations in Europe.

G&W Australia provides intermodal service six days per week on the Adelaide-to-Darwin corridor as well as intrastate haulage of bulk commodities including grain, steel and minerals, and hauls coal in New South Wales.

The Australian operations contributed about 10% of G&W’s overall operating income. Coal generated 42% of Australian revenue, followed by intermodal at 23%, and metallic ores at 21%.

G&W’s Australian operations date to 1997, when it privatized the Australia Southern Railroad. In 2000, the Australian Railroad Group was formed in a 50% venture with a partner, which G&W subsequently purchased six years later.

G&W acquired the Tarcoola to Darwin line in 2009, which at the time was the company’s largest acquisition to date.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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