Rail-industry Intelligence and funding

What If financial results are just one  measure of

Rail Industry Growth?

Industrial Development?

Transportation Planning?

Corporate Office



Ocean, Barge and Inland Ports

State and Municipal Government

DOTs and EDCs


Class I, II and III Railroads

Suppliers and Contractors

Transload Facilities


Commercial Developers / Investors

Rail-Served Industrial Parks

Shippers and BCOs

what we do

Project & Business Finance

Managing and maximizing access to capital for short-term and long-term investment horizons. 

Public Sector Consulting

Mission-critical guidance and capital strategies for port authorities, state government and municipalities.

Rail Industry Intelligence

Freight-based development, financial models and rail infrastructure planning and implementation. 

Shipper Advisory Services

Modal conversion,  supply chain optimization and site design/selection for beneficial cargo owners. 

Industrial Property Marketing

Valuation and marketing of rail-served factory sites, industrial parks and distribution centers.

Equipment Finance

Creative solutions grounded in technical expertise for railroad, contractor and MOW operations. 

Since 1994, Strategic Rail Finance has been the most sought-after and prolific freight-rail advisory firm in North America

Our Principals

 SRF was founded by Michael Sussman (left) in 1994 to innovate how capital flows to railroads and freight-based development.  

John Elliott (right) joined  as principal in 2015 to establish the Ports & Public Finance practice.

Capital, business, and finance are ultimately all about people. This understanding empowers Strategic Rail Finance to provide breakthrough results in the most sensitive, challenging situations.


Our clients receive the intelligence and capital they need to prosper.

John Elliot to Speak at AAPA Leadership Conference

SRF President John Elliott will  co-lead an important roundtable discussion in Seattle on April 16th at the Association of American Port Authorities.

The session will focus on infrastructure issues in general and rail finance in particular.  John, who leads SRF’s Ports and Public Finance practice,  is a frequent AAPA presenter.  John is currently advising Port of Long Beach, Port of Oakland, Little Rock Port Authority, Port Bienville and several others.

In Partnership with

OnTrackNorthAmerica is a non-profit 501C-3 action think-tank for sustainable freight transportation.  

Created by SRF founder Michael Sussman, OTNA is committed to the smartest use of railroadstrucks, and waterways for a better economy, environment, and community. 

OTNA has launched its Intelliconference  methodol for engaging stakeholders in collaborative dialogue with proprietary tools for online and in-person communication.

Visit OTNA Website


SRF leads $877M Port of Long Beach Rail Expansion

The Port of Long Beach, which expedties nearly 30% of US imports and exports, plans to transform its Pier B rail infrastructure, the backbone of the Port's intermodal transportation. Towards that end, POLB has retained  the services of Strategic Rail Finance  as lead...

Strategic Rail Finance Hires Will Maus as Relationship Manager

Philadelphia, PA, October 25, 2019: William Maus returns to Strategic Rail Finance as Relationship Manager after an extended hiatus during which he worked as an independent advocate for the electrification of freight railroads in North America. In partnership with...

Strategic Rail Finance Hires David Steffens as Director of Cargo Strategies

Philadelphia, PA, July 9, 2019: Strategic Rail Finance (SRF) has added David Steffens to the executive team of its rapidly growing business advisory practice.  Dave, who will serve as Director of Cargo Strategies, has extensive experience in supply chain and freight...

Three Mistakes to Avoid on Grant Applications

Recently, SRF founder Michael Sussman wrote about the mistakes most commonly made by rail businesses when presenting their projects to attract capital. His observations on working with banks and investors got me thinking about my experience helping companies and...

Two Mistakes Rail Businesses Make

For 25 years, I have dedicated our advisory firm to helping rail businesses and rail projects attract all the capital and success they deserve. Having spoken with thousands and worked with hundreds of clients, we see a pattern in almost all their presentations and...

“Strategic Rail Finance has provided valuable input into our understanding of industry dynamics and needs, particularly with regard to railroad financing issues.
Kerry Ates, Counsel to Sen. John D. Rockefeller

“When Michael Sussman and his team take on a project, they sink their teeth in like bulldogs, and don’t let go until the job is done.”
Bill Reimer, President, R&R Contracting Inc.

“What SRF has achieved in terms of re-inventing how government and business relate to one another is nothing short of miraculous.”
Lee  Bonner, Nevada DOT

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1700 Sansom Street, Suite 500
Philadelphia, PA  19103


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