RailSolutions, LLC (RailSolutions) was founded for the purpose of providing quality consulting and advisory services to financial institutions, railroads, and private fleet owners who actively invest in railroad equipment. The firm was formed in February 1997 under the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia and is headquartered in Williamsburg, VA.
RailSolutions has made a significant investment in reference materials and transportation industry publications which provide the base for the railroad industry-specific research and analyses conducted by the firm. In addition, the firm has developed several proprietary, computer-based analytical models which are regularly used in the course of the firm’s consulting business.
Robert J. Blankemeyer serves as the President of RailSolutions. Mr. Blankemeyer brings over 40 years of railroad equipment finance and leasing experience to the firm. Since the start of his career, Mr. Blankemeyer has been involved with the acquisition, leasing, management, and sale of over $15 billion in railroad and transportation equipment. During the period from 1996 to 2012, Mr. Blankemeyer was Vice President – Acquisitions at First Union Rail where he was responsible for originating secondary market purchases and portfolio acquisitions. From 2012 to 2017 as Vice President of Structured Products at Wells Fargo Rail, Mr. Blankemeyer and his team led the effort for portfolio acquisitions, syndications, and lease originations for terms of 10 years and longer.
From 1976 to 1996, Mr. Blankemeyer held a number of positions with Funding Systems Railcars, Northbrook Rail Corporation, Westinghouse Credit, and Northbrook Corporation. These positions involved investment decisions for assets, marketing of rail equipment, fleet operations, strategic planning, and workouts. During his time at Westinghouse Credit Corporation, he started a rail operating lease business where he successfully invested over $200 million in 2 years. Mr. Blankemeyer began his career in 1976 with National Railway Utilization Corporation.
From 1990 to 2012, Mr. Blankemeyer was President of Transportation Equipment Advisors, Inc. and editor of the Railcar Value Guide (RVG). The RVG presented carloading data, fleet demographic and equipment values for over 150 of the most commonly used types of railcars.
Mr. Blankemeyer earned a BS degree from St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, PA in 1976, and received MBA (1983) and MS Taxation (1984) degrees from Widener University.
James D. Husband serves as Senior Consultant. In 1997 Mr. Husband founded Railsolutions and served as President until January 1, 2019. Mr. Husband brings over 40 years of railroad industry, commercial banking and consulting experience to the firm. Since the firm was founded in 1997, Mr. Husband has conducted valuations of over 950,000 railcars and 10,000 locomotives and has managed client relationships with over 70 financial institutions, railroads, and private fleet owners.
During the period from 1991 to 1997, Mr. Husband was responsible for managing the railroad equipment valuation practice at R.L. Banks & Associates, Inc., a transportation consulting firm based in Washington, DC. From 1980 to 1991, Mr. Husband held the position of Vice President at Wachovia Bank and Perpetual Bank. During his commercial banking career, he was responsible for the management of over $200 million in railroad and other transportation equipment investments. Mr. Husband began his career in the railroad industry in 1974 and held positions at the United States Railway Association, Conrail, and National Railway Utilization Corporation.
Mr. Husband earned a BA degree from the College of William and Mary in 1970 and an MBA from the University of South Carolina in 1974. Mr. Husband also served as an instructor of Finance at the University of Maryland while attending as a Ph.D. candidate. In 1987, Mr. Husband completed the executive development program sponsored by the Graduate School of Credit and Financial Management at Dartmouth College.
Katherine Husband, Director – Financial Analysis, has been with RailSolutions since 2008. Since then, Ms. Husband has assisted with a variety of financial analysis projects, preparation of reports and organizational support. She is primarily responsible for the production of the Investors’ Guide to Railroad Freight Cars and Locomotives. This includes the compilation of rail industry economic data and statistics, and RailSolutions’ internally-generated valuation studies.
RailSolutions relies on a large volume of historical data in order to provide our clients with professional consulting and advisory services. Ms. Husband created the Master Reference Database which organizes information from past appraisals and external data sources that form the basis for the firm’s Historical Database and is used extensively in the firm’s consulting projects. In addition, she provides financial analysis support for the preparation of valuation studies and appraisals. Ms. Husband earned a BS degree from Radford University in 2005.