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KCS names Kennedy to its board

Rail News Home Kansas City Southern 11/22/2019 Rail News: Kansas City Southern
image Kansas City Southern has elected Janet Kennedy to its board, effective Dec. 1.Kennedy is vice president of America Regions at Google Cloud. She previously served on KCS' board from May 2017 until she resigned in October 2018 in connection with joining Ernst & Young LLP, which has a policy that prohibits its executives from serving on a public company's board of directors."[Kennedy's] leadership and expertise, particularly in the fields of cybersecurity, technology and risk management, are valuable assets to our board and will support the execution of the company’s strategy, including the deployment of our innovation strategy," said KCS Chairman Bob Druten in a press release.At Google Cloud, Kennedy is responsible for U.S. and Canada subsidiaries. Prior to joining Google in July, she worked at Ernst & Young as partner, Americas Digital Transformation.Kennedy also served as president of Microsoft Corp.'s subsidiary in Canada from 2013 to 2017. In addition, she has more than 30 years of experience in sales and marketing of business solutions.

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Kansas City Southern preps Holiday Express for tour

Rail News Home Kansas City Southern 11/21/2019 Rail News: Kansas City Southern
image The Holiday Express is part of a tradition of charitable giving at KCS.Photo – kcsouthern.com

Kansas City Southern's 19th annual Holiday Express will distribute $170,450 to The Salvation Army at stops along the route to provide clothing and other necessities to children in need, the Class I announced yesterday.

The train will stop in 20 communities in five states on 25 dates, starting Nov. 27 and ending Dec. 22, KCS officials said in a press release.

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KCS unveils new capital allocation policy

Rail News Home Kansas City Southern 11/13/2019 Rail News: Kansas City Southern
image Kansas City Southern yesterday announced that its board approved a new capital allocation policy, calling for cash to be deployed to capital projects, strategic investments, the repurchase of shares and dividends.Under the new policy, 40 to 50 percent of cash will be deployed to capital projects and strategic investments, while 50 to 60 percent will go toward share repurchases and dividends, KCS officials said in a press release.In addition, the company plans from time to time to use additional debt to support the new policy and intends to manage its debt-to-EBITDA ratio in the low 2x range consistent with its current ratings of BBB from Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings and Baa2 from Moody’s.Moreover, the board approved an increase in the quarterly dividend on KCS common stock to 40 cents from 36 cents per share payable Jan. 22, 2020, to stockholders of record as of Dec. 31.The board also approved a new $2 billion share repurchase program, expiring Dec. 31, 2022. The new program replaces the $800 million stock repurchase announced in 2017 under which KCS purchased $741 million of company stock.“Kansas City Southern is pleased to announce a new capital allocation policy that balances our objectives of: a) investing in future growth opportunities; b) delivering meaningful capital returns to our shareholders; and c) maintaining a desirable credit profile,” said KCS President and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Ottensmeyer.Also yesterday, the board declared a dividend of 25 cents per share on the outstanding KCS 4 percent non-cumulative preferred stock. The dividend is payable on Jan. 1, 2020, to stockholders of record as of Dec. 31.

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2019 Railroad Innovator Award profile: Kansas City Southern's Patrick Ottensmeyer

Under Patrick Ottensmeyer’s watch, KCS has been nudging the innovation needle, embracing blockchain and all that next-generation PTC might net, while also seeking ways to employ a range of autonomous technologies.Photo – kansas city southern/roy inman

By Pat Foran, Editor

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KCS releases latest sustainability report

Rail News Home Kansas City Southern 10/30/2019 Rail News: Kansas City Southern
image Kansas City Southern yesterday unveiled a report highlighting the Class I's sustainable business practices in 2018.Titled "For the Long Haul: Delivering Prosperity, Valuing People, Protecting the Planet,"  the report illustrates why sustainable practices are important to the company's business, said KCS President and Chief Executive officer Patrick Ottensmeyer in a press release."Responsible business practices are key to KCS' vision, values and culture, and to maintaining strong relationships with our stakeholders," Ottensmeyer said.The report follows the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) latest standards for disclosing governance, economic, social and environmental topics. The GRI standards provide for the disclosure of measurable data and specific information related to sustainability, KCS officials said.According to the report, KCS last year:
• reduced its carbon footprint by reducing waste and energy usage through design and innovations, and decreased greenhouse gas emissions by utilizing fuel-reduction technologies and operational initiatives;
• diversified its workforce and optimized employee experiences via innovative technologies; and
• reduced reportable injuries and made operations more safe and secure, such as by reaching a goal to make all required route miles fully positive train control compliant.The Class I also began to implement precision scheduled railroading (PSR), laying the groundwork for what became in 2019 KCS’ PSR, which is helping the company realize significant efficiency and productivity improvements, the railroad’s officials said.

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