Regions Central Virginia

James River Coal to sell three mining complexes for $52 million

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Richmond-based James River Coal Co., has accepted a $52 million bid from a subsidiary of Kentucky-based Blackhawk Mining to buy mining operations in three states.

The deal is subject to bankruptcy court approval. James River filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy court protection in April.

The Blackhawk deal includes the James River’s Hampden Mining Complex (including Logan & Kanawha Coal Co.) in Mingo and Logan counties in West Virginia, Hazard Mining Complex (other than the assets of Laurel Mountain Resources) in Perry County, Ky., and the Triad Mining Complex in Pike and Knox counties in Indiana.

The bid also would include some environmental liabilities and other liabilities.

Together the operations employ more than 900 people.

The winning bid originally was picked as the “stalking horse bidder” ahead of an auction scheduled for Aug. 18-21. In selling its assets, a bankrupt company chooses a so-called stalking horse from a pool of potential buyers to make the first bid.

The sale is expected to close on or about Aug. 29, 2014. A bankruptcy court hearing is scheduled for Aug. 26 to consider approval of the sale.

When James River filed for Chapter 11 on April 7, it had more than $800 million in debt and $1 billion in assets.

James River Coal has operations throughout eastern Kentucky, southern West Virginia and southern Indiana.

Lexington, Ky.-based Blackhawk Mining, founded in 2010, owns and operates two coal mining complexes in eastern Kentucky with production capacity of approximately 6.5 million tons per year.

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