Rand Logistics has announced that it has completed the purchase of American Steamship Company (ASC) from GATX Corporation.

The deal was first announced in February.

GATX sold the company in a cash transaction worth approximately $260m. The deal is pending customary post-closing adjustments.

The net proceeds from the sale will be used by GATX to repay outstanding debts.

A member of American Industrial Partners, Rand offers dry bulk shipping services in the Great Lakes region on the border of Canada and the US.

With the acquisition, ASC and Rand can transport approximately 50 million tonnes of dry bulk commodities each year.

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Commodities such as iron ore, coal and limestone are transported on vessels, ranging in size from 634ft to over 1,000ft.

The diverse fleet of both companies combined will offer more flexibility to its customers via its integrated transportation network and different vessel options.

Rand CEO Peter Coxon said: “This transaction is a game-changer for both Rand and our customers. Our combined 24-vessel fleet gives us the capability to meet almost every type of dry bulk transportation need on the Great Lakes.

“ASC brings a rich history, superior assets, a safe and efficient operation and a great team, which complement our operations and will benefit our customers in so many tangible ways such as increased overall transportation capacity through fleet synergies and a greater number of loading opportunities. Our vendors will also benefit from the consolidation of tens of millions of dollars of operating and capital spending each year.”

American Steamship Company president David Foster said: “ASC is thrilled to be a part of the creation of a truly unique company with the scale and flexibility to meet the diverse needs of the Great Lakes region.

“ASC brings new asset classes to the combined company along with the efficient, highly qualified crews and shoreside personnel that operate them, all making the combined company one of the premier marine transportation companies in North America.”