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Rail News: Canadian Pacific

CP asks U.S. DOJ to review Class I execs' opposition to proposed merger


Canadian Pacific today asked the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to review recent actions of major U.S. railroads whose executives have stated publicly that they are opposed to CP's proposed takeover of Norfolk Southern Corp.

In a letter to the DOJ, CP alleges that statements from some of the U.S. Class Is reported by the news media indicate that those railroads are "working closely with each other to block" the CP-NS merger.

"We are deeply concerned that these actions are being taken for the primary purpose of restraining trade in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act, and not for any legitimate purpose that would benefit the public or enhance competition in the US railroad industry," the letter states.

CP accuses some of the Class Is of launching a concerted effort to block CP's proposal "through a widespread campaign of meetings and solicitations with customers, the media" and others, according to the letter, which CP made public this morning.

The letter reiterates CP's position that the merger with NS would result in a network that would increase competition, reroute traffic around critical congestion points such as Chicago, and provide various other benefits to shippers and the rail industry. NS has rejected all three of CP's acquisition offers.

"The fact that these major railroads have joined to work so feverishly against CP's proposal speaks volumes about their concerns regarding the impact the transaction would have on their competitive position," CP's letter states.

CP's letter follows statements made by some Class I chief executives at last week's winter meeting of the Midwest Association of Rail Shippers.