Last updated: July 18. 2013 4:54PM - 199 Views
SHELDON COMPTON
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PRESTONSBURG - A nearly $7 million investment in a Prestonsburg coal company will mean jobs for area locals, the company president said Friday.
Jerry Tackett, president and chief operating officer of Genesis Coal Corporation, confirmed Friday that his company accepted $6,925,000 in secured financing from Prospect Energy Corporation, an energy finance company in New York.
The deal was announced Thursday, and company investor David Stetson, of Union, was busy Friday sorting out details via conference calls.
Genesis, which was started, according to records with the Secretary of State's Office, in January of last year, hold leases on approximately 4,700 mineral acres in Floyd County.
“This is Elkhorn Coal properties that we have leased, which are located in the Harold area of Big Mud and Little Mud,” Tackett said Friday. “We have close to 10 million recoverable tons in the area and have signed some substantial contracts.”
Those contracts, although not yet final in some cases, include, at this time, at least one large coal company and a major southeastern utility company, Tackett said.
According to financial wire reports from New York, the financing from Prospect is being used to acquire shareholder interests, secure additional mining equipment and increase production rates, which Tackett said should be significant.
“As far as production rates go, we hope to get up to a million tons a year,” he said Friday.
And workers will be needed for what Tackett figures will be four or five deep mines and one surface mine in the Harold area, boosting employment in the area.
“We look to employ around 120 people,” Tackett said. “This has been in the works for awhile. We started working on leases about a year and a half ago, and had interest from various properties, but Prospect seemed best for us, because we want to develop the companies.”
With the anticipation of 120 jobs in the area, Tackett was quick to note that one mine is set to begin production next week, while a second mine would start up in May. He said the others would come later this year and early next year.
Cited as having a good deal of experience in the coal business, Tackett is listed on records at the Secretary of State's Office as the organizer of Banner Elkhorn Properties. This company filed with that office Thursday, Feb. 9, the day dealings with Prospect were made official, and, according to records, has the same principal office as does Genesis Coal Corporation.
Prospect Energy Corporation was founded by former managers of Merrill Lynch & Co. in 1988 and normally seeks investments ranging between $5 million and $25 million. According to a press release, Prospect is receiving a significant ownership position in Genesis as part of the agreement.
“Our investment in Genesis is our third coal-related investment in the Appalachian region and our fifth energy investment in the Appalachian region, an area rich in natural resources and great people,” Prospect President Grier Eliasek said in the statement. “We look forward to financing other energy-related companies in Appalachia and beyond.”
The corporation has, to date, invested more than $1.5 billion in multiple asset classes.
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