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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight
Rail supplier news from Railinc, FreightCar America, ARI, Koppers and CIT Group (May 4)
Railinc Corp. has joined the Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA), a consortium of more than 250 transportation and logistics companies aiming to create a forum for the development of blockchain technology standards and education. Blockchain is a digital ledger technology capable of recording transactions and storing data in blocks across a distributed network. The technology "presents interesting opportunities for the freight-rail industry," said Railinc President and Chief Executive Officer Allen West in a press release. BiTA was formed in 2017. BNSF Railway Co. and Kansas City Southern recently became the first Class Is to join BiTA.
FreightCar America Inc. reported a first-quarter 2018 net loss of $6.4 million compared to net income of $600,000, or 5 cents per diluted share, in Q1 2017. Revenue in the quarter fell to $83 million from $140 million a year ago. FreightCar America delivered 1,094 rail cars in Q1 2018 compared with 1,525 rail cars Q1 2017. Although challenging industry dynamics "continue to put pressure on pricing," the company continues to focus on areas it can control, said President and CEO Jim Meyer in a press release. That includes implementation of its "back-to-basics" operational excellence program that began in Q4 2017. The company also is observing increased demand for rebuild capabilities as it relates to coal-car conversions, Meyer said.
American Railcar Industries Inc. (ARI) reported first-quarter 2018 net income of $13 million, or 68 cents a share, compared to $10.6 million, or 55 cents a share, in first-quarter 2017. The net income gain was due largely to lower income tax expenses as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, ARI officials said in a press release. Total consolidated revenue rose 1 percent to $116.2 million compared to Q1 2017. Increased revenue in the manufacturing segment and a slight increase in the rail-car leasing segment were primary drivers of the growth in revenue, which was partially offset by lower revenue in the rail-car services segment.
Koppers Holdings Inc. Senior Vice President of Railroad Products and Services Thomas Loadman will retire effective Dec. 31. As of May 1, James Sullivan — who serves as Koppers' senior vice president of global carbon materials and chemicals — will lead the company's railroad products and services segment. For the remainder of 2018, Loadman will be an advisor to the transition and other strategic projects aimed at growth opportunities, Koppers officials said in a press release. Loadman began his Koppers career in 1979 and held management positions such as railroad plant operations manager and vice president and general manager of the railroad products and services division.
CIT Group Inc.'s capital equipment finance unit has added Craig DeMordaunt as director of originations for the mountain region. He previously held origination and managerial roles at GE Capital. DeMordaunt has extensive experience in equipment finance across many industries, as well as knowledge and practice in deal structuring, debt markets and credit markets, CIT Group officials said in a press release. Meanwhile, Adrian Pysariwsky is rejoining CIT in capital equipment finance as vice president of asset valuation. Previously, he worked in commercial finance at CIT, Tyco Capital, Newcourt, AT&T Credit and AT&T Capital. Most recently, Pysariwsky managed leveraged lease and tax equity portfolio assets with MetLife.
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