The owner of RailAmerica, a short line and regional railroad holding company, is reportedly trying to find a buyer for a 56 percent stake in the company, according to a report.
A RailAmerica spokesman declined to confirm or decline a report in Trains magazine that Fortress Investment Group tasked Deutsche Bank to find a buyer of the Jacksonville, Fla.-based company. Trains magazine columnist Fred Frailey wrote there are reports that Berkshire Hathaway, the owner of BNSF Railway, has expressed interest in buying RailAmerica.
RailAmerica on Monday announced plans to redeem $74 million of its 9.25 percent senior secured notes due in 2017 on June 25. The notes will be redeemed at 103 percent of the principal amount of the notes, plus accrued interest. The company will incur charges of about $6.5 million pretax, or $3.5 million after tax, through the early retirement of the debt.
Fortress completed the acquisition of RailAmerica in 2007, and the company was relisted on the New York Stock Exchange in 2009.
RailAmerica owns 45 railroads totaling about 7,500 miles of track in 28 states and three Canadian provinces, along with a railroad construction and maintenance firm. The company lost $40.2 million in the first quarter as an $82.4 million charge related to the early retirement of debt offset a 15 percent year-over-year revenue increase.
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