This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Billionaire's Coal Struggles Irking Biz Owners

"Everybody should be really confident they're going to get paid," he said.

Justice offered a dire outlook on the future of coal, as demand in the U.S. slumps and cheap natural gas entices electric utilities.

"You're in a time when the world economies are really struggling, our economy is really struggling, utilities are converting to natural gas, and you may be witnessing the death of the coal industry," Justice said.

Justice joined his dad's business in the 1970s, and helped expand its reach into agriculture, golf courses and timber, according to Justice's personal biography. He took over the company after his father's death in 1993. The company's mining interests ventured into Kentucky in 2007 and Tennessee the next year. Justice said his 80 companies employ about 5,000 people.

Federal records say Justice controls nearly 120 coal mines, most of them in central Appalachia, though only 21 are listed as actively mining coal. Another 18 are temporarily idled.

In 2009, he sold the company's West Virginia coal operations to Russian steel firm Mechel for a reported $436 million and another $240 million in Mechel shares. That same year Justice closed on a $20 million deal to buy the historic Greenbrier Resort, which has hosted U.S. presidents and royalty.

After the purchase of the Greenbrier, Justice was hailed as "a great humanitarian" who "wants to help everyone" by then-West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin.

Paul Bryant, principal at Greenbrier East High School in Justice's hometown of Lewisburg, said the Greenbrier purchase saved the town of about 3,800 people. Justice is the head coach of the girls and boys basketball teams at the school.

"He saved 1,600 jobs and people's lives and their families and their futures," Bryant said. "I mean, if the Greenbrier Hotel would've gone under, I really kind of see this place as a ghost town."

3 of 5

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,164.95 -251.90 -1.45%
S&P 500 1,994.99 -26.26 -1.30%
NASDAQ 4,635.24 -48.1670 -1.03%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs