Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Arch Mineral, Ashland Coal Say They're Discussing a Merger

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Arch Mineral, Ashland Coal Say They're Discussing a Merger

Article excerpt

Arch Mineral Corp. of Creve Coeur and Ashland Coal Inc. of Huntington, W.Va., said Monday that they are talking about a merger.

If the deal is consummated, the two companies would create the nation's fifth largest coal producer.

They produced 36.8 million tons, or 3.7 percent of U.S. coal last year. The largest company, Peabody Holding Co. of St. Louis, produced 90.8 million tons, or 9.1 percent of the nation's coal.

Representatives of Arch Mineral and Ashland Coal declined to provide details on the negotiations, which were described in a three-paragraph news release as "preliminary discussions about a possible business combination."

Arch Mineral produced 20.1 million tons of coal last year, placing 13th among U.S. companies.

It employs 2,100 workers at its two subsidiaries, which operate mines in Illinois, West Virginia, Kentucky, Wyoming and Virginia.

Ashland Coal, the 19th-largest coal company, produced 16.7 million tons last year. It has 1,627 employees and runs mines in West Virginia and Kentucky. …

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