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Coal operator will buy Greenbrier, seek to end bankruptcy

A West Virginia businessman reportedly has purchased the financially struggling Greenbrier resort and will move to dismiss bankruptcy proceedings.

According to a news release, the popular but pricey resort was bought by a company controlled by Jim Justice.  According to news accounts, a Russian coal company recently planned to pay $425 million, plus stock, for Justice’s Bluestone Coal Company in Raleigh County, West Virginia, in a deal valued at around $800 million.

When it sought bankruptcy protection, The Greenbrier proposed a plan that called for an asset purchase by The Marriott Corp.  Court papers made it clear the plan was dependent on cutting high union labor costs.

The news release indicates that former-Greenbrier owner CSX is pleased with the development.  Michael Ward, chairman, president and chief executive officer of CSX, commented, “While this is an entirely different kind of transaction than expected, this is a great result for The Greenbrier, its employees, the community, and CSX.   Mr. Justice has made his passion and enthusiasm for The Greenbrier very clear.”

By Peter Vieth

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