By Justin Franz
WASHINGTON — Canadian National is not taking its breakup with Kansas City Southern well.
This week, attorneys for CN filed a comment with the U.S. Surface Transportation Board in regards to the schedule to review the proposed KCS-Canadian Pacific merger. Presently, the railroads and the STB are preparing for a review that will last well into 2022. But CN says it should go even longer because CP and KCS jumped the gun on filing. According to attorneys, it is customary for applicants seeking a major merger to wait three months from filing a notice of intent to file the formal merger application. CP-KCS announced the merger on September 15 and filed a notice of intent that same day. They then filed the formal merger application less than seven weeks later.
According to CN’s reading of the STB’s own rules, CP-KCS should not have been able to file its formal merger application until December 15.
CN notes that while CP-KCS had filed a notice of intent earlier in the year, that deal was later canceled by KCS when CN made a better offer. CN said the deal announced on September 15 is an all-new deal and thus that’s the notice of intent that matters.
CN officials said that by allowing CP and KCS to file early, they are robbing stakeholders of time to comment on the proposal.