United Coal Company produces exclusively metallurgical coal via 3 operating subsidiaries. It has an estimated 120 mln tons of coal reserves, which represents nearly 34 years of production based on current production levels.
Over the years, UCC has pursued a moderate growth plan, adding new equipment and upgrades to ensure safe, environmentally friendly operations at all of its locations. The company operates 14 mines in three states (West Virginia, Virginia, and Kentucky) and employs more than 900 people.
A staff of 44 employees work out of the Johnson City Office, which houses corporate activities in accounting, purchasing, information technology, human resources and sales.
Headquartered in Johnson City, Tenn., the company operates three subsidiaries in three states:
Virginia and Kentucky Operations
- Wellmore Coal Company – Grundy and Big Rock, Va.
West Virginia Operations
- Pocahontas Coal Company – Beckley, W.Va.
- Affinity Coal Complex – Midway, W.Va.
- Carter Roag Coal Company – Mill Creek, W.Va.
AFFINITY COAL COMPANY
In 2010, United Coal Company launched its third subsidiary in West Virginia, Affinity Coal Company, by opening an idled coal mine and constructing a new preparation plant. Affinity was a key addition to UCC and its parent company, Metinvest – providing high-quality metallurgical coal for the low vol global market.
Located in Midway, W.Va., Affinity’s 550 ton-per-hour preparation plant is supported by a reopened coal mine that was started in the 1930’s and continued to operate until the 1980’s. The project has brought 300-plus jobs to the area and was a significant investment for not only Metinvest, but for the local communities as well.
This leading metallurgical coal mine is meeting the ever-changing demands of the steel industry, producing 1 million tons per year of production, using three super-section, continuous miner units.
CARTER ROAG COAL COMPANY
Carter Roag Coal Company has operated as a subsidiary of United Coal Company since 2004, when UCC purchased permitted reserves in Randolph and Upshur counties in West Virginia. The property has produced high-volatile metallurgical Sewell coal for several decades.
Carter Roag now has more than 160 employees and mines 400,000 tons of coal annually. The company operates one deep mine – Morgan Camp – located near Helvetia, W.Va. Carter Roag’s coal preparation facility, the Starbridge Plant is also near Helvetia, W.Va., and is a 550-ton-per-hour operation. This subsidiary has several opportunities for expansion and is currently planning to bring on additional mines in surrounding reserves over the next several years.
POCAHONTAS COAL COMPANY
In 2005, United Coal Company purchased the assets of Beckley, W.Va.-based White Mountain Mining Co., LLC, and certain affiliates to establish Pocahontas Coal Company.
Pocahontas was idled in 2014 due to market conditions, but resumed production in 2017 at one of its highwall miner operations. The subsidiary also started a contractor auger operation in 2018. Production from the highwall miner and the auger is hauled to and washed at the Affinity Preparation Plant.
WELLMORE COAL COMPANY
In 2006, United Coal Company purchased The Rapoca Group, LLC, headquartered in Bristol, Va., and renamed the operation Wellmore Coal Company in recognition of United Coal’s origins in Buchanan County.
Wellmore has both company-owned and contract operations that include two company-operated underground mines, one company-operated surface mines, seven contract mines, three shops, two preparation plants and rail-loading facilities, a lab and administration office – for a total of 389 employees.
The company’s reserves, which total more than 55 million tons, are primarily mid/high-volatile metallurgical reserves and low-sulfur steam reserves in the Splashdam, Banner, Glamorgan, Jawbone and Hagy seams. Wellmore’s deep and surface mining operations are located throughout Buchanan, Tazewell and Dickenson counties in Southwest Virginia, with additional reserves located in Pike County, Ky., and McDowell County, W.Va.
The company’s Splashdam reserves are some of the most sought-after mid/high-volatile metallurgical coals in the Central Appalachian basin – supplying both domestic and international markets. Wellmore produces approximately 1.8 million tons of coal and is poised to re-emerge as a dominant supplier of mid/high-volatile metallurgical coal.