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Watco Companies, LLC

Media Release


Pittsburg, KS, November 10, 2016 – Watco Companies, LLC (Watco), has reached a definitive agreement with Kinder Morgan Terminals (KMT) to purchase 20 bulk terminal operations in the United States, expanding Watco’s terminal operations footprint to 73 locations. The new locations include 14 locations on the inland waterways, 4 rail/truck terminals, and 2 deep water locations. The locations are focused on the dry and break bulk industries handling a diverse mix of commodities including fertilizer, ferro alloys, salt, coal, and various break-bulk products. 
“The Watco Team is excited to continue expanding our waterways presence. We realized tremendous success through the terminals that were acquired in our previous transaction with Kinder Morgan in early 2015 and we expect continued success with these facilities as well,” said Watco’s Senior Vice President of Network Strategy Will Patterson. “We have identified many opportunities to expand our terminal operations and rail presence with these new sites and look forward to further developing operations with our Customers.”
“This group of terminals provides yet another great opportunity to grow with our Customers,” said Watco Chief Operating Officer Dan Smith. “We have continued to evolve and refocus our operations and marketing efforts. We are extremely appreciative of the opportunity to provide a high level of safe and efficient service to Customers at these locations and will work to expand business in these new markets with this abundant new base of assets.”
“We are delighted to enter into this mutually beneficial transaction with Watco.  It allows us to monetize non-core assets, representing less than 2% of the segment’s earnings, on attractive terms while giving employees at those terminals an opportunity to work on assets that are core to Watco’s business,” said John Schlosser, Kinder Morgan Terminals president.

In anticipation of the terminal acquisition, a new equity investment was closed on September 30th, 2016, with SkyKnight Capital (SkyKnight). The Crowley Family, who owns and operates Crowley Maritime, are the seed investors behind SkyKnight. Watco expects that Crowley Maritime, one of the largest maritime businesses in the U.S., will be a long-term strategic partner. As part of SkyKnight’s initial investment into Watco, Tom Crowley has joined Watco’s Board of Directors.  Watco and SkyKnight anticipate closing a second round of equity with additional equity partners prior to year-end to support Watco’s various Customer growth initiatives.
For additional information on the terminal transaction please contact Will Patterson at 270-925-5266. The transaction with Kinder Morgan includes the following terminal locations:

Amory Bulk Terminal, Amory, Mississippi
Black Hawk Terminal, Waterloo, Iowa
Blytheville Terminal, Blytheville, Arkansas
Camden Terminal, Camden, New Jersey
Chicago Ferro, Chicago, Illinois
Cincinnati Bulk/Liquids (River T), Cincinnati, Ohio
Columbus Terminal, Columbus, Mississippi
Cora Terminal, Rockwood, IL
Decatur Ferro Terminal, Trinity, Alabama
Decatur River Port, Trinity, Alabama
Gateway Warehouse, St. Louis, Missouri
Grand Rivers, Grand Rivers, Kentucky
Guntersville Bulk Terminal, Guntersville, Alabama
Kinder Morgan Cahokia Terminal, Sauget, Illinois
Meramec Services, Sauget, Illinois
Owensboro Gateway Terminal - East, Hawesville, Kentucky
Port Newark Terminal, Port Newark, New Jersey
Port of Memphis Bulk Terminal, Memphis, Tennessee
West Memphis Reload, West Memphis, Arkansas
West Memphis Terminal, Memphis, Arkansas

Wells Fargo Securities, LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor to Kinder Morgan on the transaction.
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About Watco Companies, LLC
Watco Companies, LLC, is a Pittsburg, Kansas, based transportation company providing, transportation, terminal and port, mechanical, and supply chain services to Customers throughout North America and Australia. Watco is the owner of Watco Transportation Services, LLC, one of the largest short line railroad holding companies in the U.S. with 36 short line railroads and 32 industrial contract switching locations. Watco Terminal and Port Services operates several terminals, two significant port operations, and multiple warehouses.  Watco Companies is a 50/50 joint venture partner with The Greenbrier Companies, Inc., in GBW Railcar Services, LLC. GBW repairs and refurbishes freight cars at 32 locations across North America. Watco’s Supply Chain Services provides supply chain solutions globally. More information about Watco and its subsidiaries can be found at


Customer First - SAFETY Always!