Platinum Equity
Mergers. Acquisitions. Operations.

Mergers. Acquisitions. Operations.

American Commercial Lines

Transportation & Logistics • Public-to-Private Transaction • Acquired in December 2010

Transports dry and liquid cargo by barge on the U.S. inland waterways, and provides shipbuilding and repair services.

American Commercial Lines barges and tow boats ply America's intracoastal waterways. Barge shipping remains among the most efficient method of transporting goods: bulk items can be shipped at very low cost compared to rail or truck, while very heavy or large items can be shipped fully assembled, eliminating the expense of on-site assembly.


  • Founded in 1915 as a coal-moving business on the Kentucky River.
  • 4,000 barges and 150 tow boats working 12,000 miles of the U.S. inland waterways.
  • Serves customers in minerals, grain, and petrochemicals.
  • Major transporter of blades and towers for wind energy applications.
  • In addition to marine transport, has a growing business in marine manufacturing services.
  • Approximately 3,600 employees.
  • Acquired AEP River Operations from American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) in November 2015.


Combining years of experience in transportation and logistics with expertise in public-to-private transactions, we overcame complex capital structure elements to acquire American Commercial Lines. The deal, which includes significant barge, tow boat, and shipbuilding assets, was valued at approximately $800 million.

Our offer satisfied ACL’s board of directors and shareholders, including a 25% shareholder who executed a support agreement in favor of the transaction. The transaction was our second acquisition of a company operating under the Jones Act.


  • American Commercial Lines Acquires AEP River Operations »
  • Platinum Equity Company American Commercial Lines Announces New Leadership »
  • ACL Announces Hiring Plans in Strengthening Business Climate »
  • ACL Awarded Membership in the Louisiana Environmental Leadership Program »
  • updated 02/16
    "With the full support of Platinum Equity, we are investing in our fleet and our people to position ACL on a course toward operational excellence and financial strength." Mark Knoy, President and Chief Executive Officer, American Commercial Lines



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