Arch Coal to acquire Patriot’s US met coal reserves for $16m

US coal producer Arch Coal has agreed a deal to acquire the Guffy metallurgical coal property from Patriot Coal for $16 million in cash.

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The Guffy reserves are owned by Patriot and are next to Arch’s Tygart Valley reserves and Leer mine in the US state of West Virginia, Arch Coal said on Friday October 11.

The reserves are comparable in quality to Leer’s high-volatility met coal reserves, it said.

“The addition of the Guffy reserves will enable Arch to recover up to an incremental 8 million tons of metallurgical coal at the Leer mine, thereby extending the estimated mine life of Leer by nearly three years,” Arch said.

The Missouri-based company has settled all pending and potential legal claims with Patriot arising from Arch’s sale of coal companies to Magnum Coal Co, a subsidiary of ArcLight Capital Partners, in 2005 and the subsequent purchase of those companies by Patriot in 2008.

Arch will pay $5 million in cash to Patriot on the latter’s exit from bankruptcy.

Also, as part of the settlement, Arch Coal will issue a $16 million letter of credit posted by Patriot for it to purchase bonds.

Following the settlement with Patriot, Arch remains in discussions with the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) trade union on a potential resolution of outstanding litigation claims.