CSX reaches deal with hedge fund, hires new railroad CEO

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OMAHA, Neb. — CSX has hired the executive who led Canadian Pacific’s turnaround and has also reached a deal with the hedge fund pushing for changes at the railroad.

CSX Corp. said Monday that Hunter Harrison will become the railroad’s CEO immediately, replacing Michael Ward. Harrison, Mantle Ridge hedge fund founder Paul Hilal and three others will join CSX’s board.

Harrison says he plans to implement the tightly scheduled operating model he used at CP and Canadian National railroads to reduce costs and boost profits.

CSX says it will ask shareholders to vote on aspects of Harrison’s compensation package that would include reimbursing him for $84 million in compensation he forfeited at CP. Harrison says he will resign if the compensation isn’t approved.

Harrison will also get options on nine million CSX shares.