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CP Rail signs deal to buy Kansas City Southern for US$25 billion

A Canadian Pacific Railway employee walks along the side of a locomotive in a marshalling yard in Calgary, Wednesday, May 16, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Canadian Pacific Railway Limited has agreed to buy Kansas City Southern in a bid to create a rail route linking Canada, the United States and Mexico.

The two companies announced in a joint press release that CP Rail has entered into a merger agreement to acquire Kansas City Southern for approximately US$25 billion.

Under the deal, shares of Kansas City Southern will be valued at US$275 per share, representing a 23 per cent premium over Friday closing prices.

KCS shareholders will receive 0.489 of a CP share and US$90 in cash for each KCS common share held.

The merger, which has to be approved by the Surface Transportation Board, will create what the companies describe as the first rail network connecting the three North American countries.

“This transaction will be transformative for North America, providing significant positive impacts for our respective employees, customers, communities, and shareholders,” CP President and Chief Executive Officer Keith Creel said in a statement.

“This will create the first U.S.-Mexico-Canada railroad, bringing together two railroads that have been keenly focused on providing quality service to their customers to unlock the full potential of their networks. CP and KCS have been the two best performing Class 1 railroads for the past three years on a revenue growth basis.”

Creel said the deal will help integrate the continent’s supply chains — a priority that has become more pressing since the signing of the USMCA free trade agreement.

The press release said the combined company will operate more than 32,100 kilometres of rail and generate total revenues of approximately US$8.7 billion based on 2020 figures.

“In combining with CP, customers will have access to new, single-line transportation services that will provide them with the best value for their transportation dollar and a strong competitive alternative to the larger Class 1s,” said KSC President and CEO Patrick J. Ottensmeyer.

The two companies will join together in Kansas City, Mo., and will run throughout Canada and at points in the U.S. Midwest, the U.S. Northeast and points on KCS’ system throughout Mexico and the South Central U.S.

The companies said the Surface Transportation Board review is expected to be completed by the middle of 2022.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 21, 2021

Companies in this story: (TSX: CP, NYSE: CP, NYSE: KSU)

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