On October 13, 2016, Pacific Imperial Railroad, Inc. (“PIR”) filed a voluntary petition for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in order to preserve the value of its primary asset, the 99-year Amended and Restated Desert Line Lease and Operating Agreement (“Desert Line Lease”). The Desert Line right of way starts at the U.S.-Mexico border at Milepost 59.6 in Division, California, and spans approximately 70 miles eastward to Milepost 130.0 in Plaster City, California. The western terminus connects with a railway in Mexico and the eastern terminus connects with the Union Pacific line.
PIR is selling substantially all of its non-cash assets. Those assets consist primarily of (1) Desert Line Lease, (2) the sublessor’s interest in a sublease of approximately 60 miles of the Desert Line to Baja California Rail Road, Inc. (“Baja Rail”), (3) approximately 11 miles of the Desert Line that is not subleased to Baja Rail, but which Baja Rail has the non-exclusive right to travel over, and (4) certain real property adjacent to the last 11 miles which may be suitable for the construction of an intermodal facility.
PIR has entered into an asset purchase agreement with International Transportation Association (“ITA”) for the price of $3,800,000. ITA is an affiliate of Baja Rail. The sale is subject to overbidding. That means that other interested and qualified purchasers may bid for the assets at a sale hearing to be scheduled in the near future. The minimum overbid will be $3,875,000. PIR has solicited competing bids from other companies in the railroad and intermodal businesses.
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