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Aurizon Holdings to acquire One Rail Australia for $1.8bn

By Andreas Ismar

05:24, 22 October 2021

Aurizon diesel locomotive carrying freight in Queensland, Australia
Aurizon diesel locomotive carrying freight in Queensland, Australia - Photo: Shutterstock

Railway operator Aurizon Holdings plans to acquire One Rail Australia (ORA) for AUD2.35bn ($1.8bn) which will allow it to tap into new geographies and increase its non-coal bulk freight business.

Following the acquisition, the country’s largest rail freight company will gain access to South Australia and Northern Territory, including the 2,200km railway line stretching from Tarcoola to Darwin.  

“Aurizon will retain and integrate the ORA bulk and general freight assets into the Aurizon business. These include the Tarcoola-to-Darwin rail infrastructure, South Australian regional infrastructure, five rail yards, 68 active locomotives, over 1000 active wagons and approximately 400 employees,” the company said in an exchange filing.

“Transformative” acquisition

“The One Rail acquisition is highly strategic and transformative for Aurizon. It is fully aligned with Aurizon’s strategy to grow our Bulk freight business into new markets and new geographies in Australia,” said managing director and CEO Andrew Harding.

By entering the new regions, Aurizon can increase its non-coal freight business, including “growth opportunities in base metals, agriculture, iron ore and for new economy metals such as manganese and copper,” added Harding.  

To divest ORA’s East Coast Rail

The acquisition would also see ORA’s East Coast Rail (ECR) in New South Wales and Queensland transferred to Aurizon, regions where the latter has dominant position.

To ensure clearance from Australia’s antitrust body, Aurizon will have ECR to be operated independently and will be divested post-acquisition. The railway operator expects the transaction to be concluded between January and April 2022, while ECR divestment likely to be completed before the end of next year.  


14,586.20 Price
+0.100% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0255%
Short position overnight fee 0.0032%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 1.8

Oil - Crude

72.53 Price
+1.380% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0179%
Short position overnight fee -0.0040%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.03


26,920.10 Price
-0.460% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 60.00


0.54 Price
+1.410% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.00421

Following the deal announcement, shares in Aurizon fell 6% at AUD3.66 in late afternoon on the Australian bourse.

Read more: Rail operator Aurizon reports stagnant revenues and earnings for 2021

The difference between stocks and CFDs

The main difference between CFD trading and stock trading is that you don’t own the underlying stock when you trade on an individual stock CFD.

With CFDs, you never actually buy or sell the underlying asset that you’ve chosen to trade. You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional stock trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares for money, and you own this equity.

CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional stock trading, you buy the shares for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks.

CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades, (unless you use 1-1 leverage) which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a stockbroker commission or fees when buying and selling stocks.

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