Close date delayed for Patriot Coal asset sale

OREANDA-NEWS. October 27, 2015. The closing date for Patriot's asset sale to Blackhawk Mining has been postponed a second time.

The deal will close in "the next couple of days," Blackhawk told Argus. It was originally scheduled to occur on 23 October and was then moved to today.

None of the details still being worked out are "transaction-threatening," Blackhawk said.

The company won the rights to buy the bulk of Patriot's assets in a September auction, after striking a deal to act as a "stalking horse" bidder in June, buying the bulk of the company's operating assets in exchange for \\$643mn in debt and equity. Patriot is operating under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Blackhawk will take over the Panther, Rocklick, Wells, Kanawha Eagle, Paint Creek and Midland Trail mining complexes.

The company told Argus it has ratified a contract with the United Mine Workers of America, but declined to make any details public.

The union said it could not yet discuss the matter.

It is unclear whether the closing date has also been extended for the sale of the rest of Patriot's assets to ERP Compliant Fuels, a joint venture between the non-profit Virginia Conservation Legacy Fund and a group of former coal company executives. The Virginia fund intends to create a compliant-fuels carbon offsetting program, tying reforestation credits to coal sales.

Patriot and the Virginia fund did not return requests for comment.