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8/31/2004



Rail News: M&A

Done deal Down Under: RailAmerica completes Freight Australia sale



Today, RailAmerica Inc. announced it completed the sale of Freight Australia to Australian-based freight-rail logistics firm Pacific National for $204 million.

The short-line holding company will use $60 million of the sale proceeds to pay off senior debt and the balance to repay other long-term debt, which will strengthen RailAmerica's balance sheet, reduce interest expenses and help the company reach its net debt-to-capital ratio goal of 50 percent, said RailAmerica Chief Executive Officer Charles Swinburn in a prepared statement.

"With the sale of Freight Australia now complete, we can concentrate on operating and growing our North American rail business," he said.

In 1999, RailAmerica purchased Freight Australia from the Victorian state government for $103 million. Pacific National now assumes ownership of the short-line holding company's 45-year lease of the Victorian Freight Network.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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