CSX has a “fairly good recovery” | Jax Daily Record | Jacksonville Daily Record

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After a difficult February, the business of CSX Corp. recover well in March, CEO James Foote said last week.

However, the situation is not perfect, Foote said at an investor conference sponsored by JP Morgan.

“The railroad, under the circumstances, is actually working quite well,” he said. But, “this is clearly not nirvana.”

Business was improving in January after the 2020 pandemic crisis, but “February slammed our heads,” Foote said, as bad weather affected the northern part of the company’s rail network.

Jacksonville-based CSX operates throughout the eastern half of the United States

“February was not a good month from an income and cost perspective,” with rising fuel prices driving up expenses, he said.

Despite the challenges, Foote remains optimistic.

“Overall I think we’ve adjusted. We’ve shown the world – not just at CSX but the rail industry – that we’re much more nimble and able to adapt and work our way through just about anything they can throw at us. “, did he declare. .

Foote said 2021 brought “a good, strong start, a big bump in the road and a pretty good recovery right now in March.”

CSX qualifies Pan Am as a “minor” agreement

In November, CSX Corp. announced its first railroad acquisition in over two decades, but the company doesn’t want anyone to think it’s a big deal.

The company’s application to the US Surface Transportation Board to approve its purchase from Pan Am Railways Inc. said the deal should be considered a “minor” transaction.

Acquiring the 1800-mile rail network from Massachusetts-based Pan Am would expand the company’s operations in New England.

CSX said in a Surface Transportation Board file last week that the acquisition would be “an efficient, end-to-end extension of CSXT’s network in New England that poses no competition concerns.”

CSX said it had discussions with customers and communities affected by the deal before filing its request with the transportation committee in February.

“CSX did not immediately apply for STB approval of the transaction because CSX wanted to address any concerns about potential competitive effects before seeking STB clearance,” he said. it stated in last week’s follow-up record.

The Surface Transportation Board has three classifications for mergers: major, significant, and minor.

If the Pan American deal were deemed important, it would add 75 more days to the regulatory process than if the deal were classified as minor, CSX said in last week’s filing.

Foote was not asked about the Pan Am deal or other rail mergers at last week’s conference. The conference took place ahead of the announcement of a major rail deal on March 21, a $ 29 billion merger of Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. and Kansas City Southern.

Black Knight Adds Mortgage Broker System

Black Knight Inc. announced last week that it has acquired a cloud-based loan origination system for mortgage brokers from NexSpring Financial.

Jacksonville-based Black Knight is already the dominant technology company for mortgage lenders, providing processing services for 64% of all senior mortgages in the United States.

The addition of the NexSpring system allows the company to extend its reach. In a press release, Black Knight CEO Anthony Jabbour said mortgage brokers “represent the fastest growing origination channel in the industry.”

Terms of the deal were not announced.

International sales of baling presses increase

International Baler Corp. said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing last week that sales in its first quarter ended Jan. 31 increased 16.9% to $ 2.35 million.

The Jacksonville-based company said it sold more balers used for recycling and waste disposal during the quarter, and a 38.5% increase in parts and service sales also helped boost sales. income.

International Baler incurred an operating loss of $ 174,018 during the quarter. However, he recorded income of $ 626,466 from a canceled Paycheck Protection Program loan.

Aided by the gain, the company reported net income of $ 489,339, or 9 cents per share, during the quarter.

Patriot Selling Tampa Property

Patriot Transportation Holding Inc. said in an SEC filing last week that it had agreed to sell 25 acres of land in south Tampa for $ 9.5 million.

The Jacksonville-based trucking company said the land had been used for an operating terminal and that it intended to move the facility to another site in the Tampa market.

Patriot said he plans to close the sale during the current fiscal year.

Shoe Carnival appoints new CEO

Shoe Carnival Inc. appointed a new general manager last week to replace retiree Cliff Sifford.

Mark Worden, president and chief client officer of the company, will become CEO on September 30.

Sifford will remain vice chairman of the Evansville, Indiana-based shoe chain’s board of directors.

Former Jacksonville Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver is the president and major shareholder of Shoe Carnival. He and his wife, Delores, control 29% of the company’s shares, according to a recent SEC filing.

Worden, 47, joined Shoe Carnival in 2018 as executive vice president.

“When Mark joined Shoe Carnival almost three years ago, our goal was to recruit a senior executive who would be able to take over the leadership of the leadership at the right time,” Sifford said in a press release.

Weaver said in the statement that he has “the utmost confidence in his ability to lead the Shoe Carnival team and deliver strong performances as we enter this new chapter.”

Shoe Carnival also announced that it is increasing its quarterly dividend from 5 cents per share to 14 cents.

Ashford hotel occupancy rate drops

As Memorial Day weekend approaches last May, executives at Ashford Hospitality Trust Inc. have expressed optimism about a rebound in business at its One Ocean Resort hotel in Atlantic Beach.

They hoped it was a sign of a post-pandemic return for the hospitality industry.

However, the company’s annual report filed with the SEC last week showed how difficult 2020 is for its 103 hotels.

The occupancy rate of the One Ocean Resort of 193 rooms for the full year was only 57.41%, compared to 71.91% in 2019, according to the annual report.

Ashford also has a 120-room Marriott Residence Inn in Jacksonville which had 59.66% occupancy last year, up from 82.08% in 2019, and a 119-room Hilton Garden Inn which only had 43.65. % occupancy, against 73.55%.

All three properties in the Jacksonville area did better than the rest of Ashford’s portfolio, with the total occupancy rate of only 34.37% across all of its hotels, up from 76.35% the year before.

Another publicly traded hotel owner reported similar data for his Jacksonville property last week.

Condor Hospitality Trust Inc. said its 120-room Jacksonville Courtyard by Marriott was 52.2% occupied in 2020.

American Outdoor beats predictions

American Outdoor Brands Inc. shares surged last week after reporting profits well above analysts’ expectations.

The outdoor equipment company reported adjusted earnings of 82 cents per share for its third quarter ended Jan. 31, down from 13 cents a year earlier and better than analysts’ consensus forecast of 36 cents, according to Nasdaq.

Sales jumped 91% to $ 82.6 million.

American Outdoor stock rose $ 5.67 to $ 28.89 on March 18 after the report.

American Outdoor closed its Jacksonville warehouse two years ago and consolidated operations at its headquarters in Missouri.

The company operated the 100,625 square foot facility at 7720 Philips Highway after acquiring a Jacksonville company called Ultimate Survival Technologies Inc. for $ 32.3 million in 2016.

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