CHAVIES — A well-known local coal company operating in the Chavies community was sold recently to a company whose interests also include land development and retail businesses.
Pine Branch Coal Sales in Chavies had long been owned and operated by the Duff family, and is made up of three surface mines producing 1.7 million tons of coal annually. The company was recently purchased by JMP Coal Holdings, and is now a part of Blackhawk Mining out of Lexington.
According to a statement from Blackhawk Mining President Nick Glancy, this purchase will more than double the company’s current production. Blackhawk currently opeates one mine in Floyd County that produces 1.5 million tons of coal.
JMP Coal Holdings was created in 2007 after Tom and Mitch Potter consolidated their business interests. They now have a widely diversified series of investments in energy development, land, and retail. They currently own Eagle Creek Mining, Hawkeye Contractors, Lake Developers, and Lexington Motosports.
According to Glancy, he believes that with the development strategy of Blackhawk and the human and natural resources of Pine Branch, the mine can continue to be very successful.
“Blackhawk Mining is very excited about combining the low cost, well respected operations of Pine Branch with the high quality reserve base and low cost operations of Blackhawk,” Glancy told the Herald via email on Thursday. “We have always had the highest respect for the Duff family and the employees who have helped make Pine Branch so successful. We believe that this acquisition will establish Blackhawk as a company positioned for success in the new and challenging environment for Central Appalachian coal producers.”