PITTSBURGH, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) has entered into an agreement to purchase, through a subsidiary, Mon River Towing and J.A.R. Barge Lines, LP, from The Guttman Group. Closing is expected to occur later this month. "This acquisition enhances our existing river and dock operations in the Upper Ohio River System and allows us to make more efficient use of our river assets," said J. Brett Harvey, CONSOL Energy president and CEO. "In addition, there are operational synergies that will result in cost benefits for the combined river operations. CONSOL Energy's more than 125 years of experience in river operations dovetails nicely with the successful operations of Mon River and J.A.R. along the inland transportation system." CONSOL Energy's river and dock operations currently transport approximately 11 million tons of coal annually with its five towboats and nearly 300 barges. After the transaction has been completed, the combined river and dock operations will have 18 towboats and more than 650 barges with the capacity to transport 24 million tons of coal, annually. Revenues from the combined operations were approximately $45 million in 2005. "The expanded capabilities created by this acquisition give us a much greater opportunity to serve our coal customers," Harvey continued. "Not only are we able to produce and sell them high-Btu coal that has access to the river, but, with this acquisition, we are able to provide them with transportation services as well." Mon River Towing also transports petroleum products, coal, limestone and other bulk commodities to various locations along the navigable rivers of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky. J.A.R. Barge Line charters motor vessels and barges to other river transportation firms along the inland waterways. CONSOL Energy expects to continue to provide these business services through its river and dock operations. CONSOL Energy Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the largest producer of high-Btu bituminous coal in the United States. CONSOL Energy has 17 bituminous coal mining complexes in six states. In addition, the company is a majority shareholder in one of the largest U.S. producers of coalbed methane, CNX Gas Corporation. CONSOL Energy Inc. has annual revenues of $2.8 billion. The company was named one of America's most admired companies in 2005 by Fortune magazine. It received the U.S. Department of the Interior's Office of Surface Mining National Award for Excellence in Surface Mining for the company's innovative reclamation practices in 2002 and 2003. Also in 2003, the company was listed in Information Week magazine's "Information Week 500" list for its information technology operations. In 2002, the company received a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Climate Protection Award. Additional information about the company can be found at its web site: www.consolenergy.com. Forward-Looking Statements CONSOL Energy is including the following cautionary statement to make applicable and take advantage of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 for any forward-looking statements made by, or on behalf of, CONSOL Energy. With the exception of historical matters, any matters discussed are forward-looking statements (as defined in Section 21E of the Exchange Act) that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from projected results. You can identify these statements by forward-looking words such as "may," "will," "expect," "anticipate," "believe," "guidance," "forecast," "estimate," "intend," "predict," and "continue" or similar words. These risks, uncertainties and contingencies include, but are not limited to, the following: - the disruption of rail, barge and other systems which deliver our coal, or pipeline systems which deliver our gas; - our inability to hire qualified people to meet replacement or expansion needs; - the risks inherent in coal mining being subject to unexpected disruptions, including geological conditions, equipment failure, fires, accidents and weather conditions which could cause our results to deteriorate; - uncertainties in estimating our economically recoverable coal and gas reserves; - risks in exploring for and producing gas; - obtaining governmental permits and approvals for our operations; - a loss of our competitive position because of the competitive nature of the coal industry and the gas industry, or a loss of our competitive position because of overcapacity in these industries impairing our profitability; - a decline in prices we receive for our coal and gas affecting our operating results and cash flows; - the inability to produce a sufficient amount of coal to fulfill our customers' requirements, which could result in our customers initiating, claims against us; - reliance on customers extending existing contracts or entering into new long-term contracts for coal; - reliance on major customers; - our inability to collect payments from customers if their creditworthiness declines; - coal users switching to other fuels in order to comply with various environmental standards related to coal combustion; - the effects of government regulation; - our inability to obtain additional financing necessary in order to fund our operations, capital expenditures, potential acquisitions and to meet our other obligations; - the incurrence of losses in future periods; - the effects of mine closing, reclamation and certain other liabilities; - our ability to comply with restrictions imposed by our senior credit facility; - increased exposure to employee related long-term liabilities; - lump sum payments made to retiring salaried employees pursuant to our defined benefit pension plan; - the outcome of various asbestos litigation cases; - our ability to comply with laws or regulations requiring that we obtain surety bonds for workers' compensation and other statutory requirements; - results of class action lawsuits against us and certain of our officers alleging that the defendants issued false and misleading statements to the public and seeking damages and costs; - our ability to service debt and pay dividends is dependent upon us receiving distributions from our subsidiaries; and - the anti-takeover effects of our rights plan could prevent a change of control.
SOURCE CONSOL Energy Inc.