MARUBENI Corp and its US affiliate Marubeni America have acquired Illinois-based wagon lessor Midwest Railcar Corp, the Japanese firm announced on December 4. MRC was established in 1999, and now leases around 3 000 wagons to railways and freight shippers, provides a brokerage service and manages vehicles owned by third parties.Marubeni said it had made a strategic decision to enter the US leasing market, where around half of the operational wagon fleet is leased and demand is ’growing very rapidly.’ It will ’invest and grow the MRC business quite intensively in a short time to double the size of its asset in order to meet the strong American railway transportation demand’, and further growth into Europe and Asia is planned for ’the quite near future’.n