US-based Greenbrier and Japanese company Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance (MUL) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for more than $1bn in North America.
Under the MoU, MUL proposes to grow its portfolio from 5,000 railcars to a total of 25,000 over the next four years. The company plans to purchase 6,000 newly-manufactured units from Greenbrier through to 2020.
As part of the MoU, the companies will form a new asset management service entity, which will manage 5,000 railcars currently managed by Greenbrier. The new entity will be equally owned by both companies.
MUL's president and chief executive officer (CEO) Tadashi Shiraishi said: "We have set an ambitious target to increase MUL's market share to a level that places it among North America's top eight leading operating lessors of railcars.
“MUL has also secured access to Greenbrier's proficiency in railcar management through the formation of a new enterprise that will serve as the sole provider of railcar management supporting MUL's rapidly expanding fleet."
MUL will also obtain all its units exclusively from Greenbrier through to 2023 and will supplement portfolio growth through a combination of lease syndications and used equipment over the next few years.
The companies collaborated in 2014 on a railcar lease syndication and asset management partnership designed to establish MUL as an owner of assets in North America.
Under the agreement, Greenbrier has syndicated and sold nearly 5,000 new and used leased railcars to MUL.