Business Maverick

‘OPPORTUNISTIC’

Anglo American board rejects BHP takeover bid

Anglo American board rejects BHP takeover bid
Anglo American says the unsolicited BHP bid is ‘opportunistic and fails to value Anglo American’s prospects’. (Photo: Waldo Swiegers / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The world’s largest mining company now has until 22 May 2024 to declare its firm intentions towards Anglo and its tasty copper holdings.

Anglo American has rejected the unsolicited bid by BHP to acquire all of its assets minus most of its SA operations. 

In a stock exchange news statement on Friday morning, Anglo Chairman Stuart Chambers said the all-share BHP proposal was “opportunistic and fails to value Anglo American’s prospects”. 

“Anglo American is well positioned to create significant value from its portfolio of high-quality assets that are well aligned with the energy transition and other major demand trends.” 

Chambers pointedly noted that 30% of Anglo’s production is from copper, and this would be of huge benefit down the road to its shareholders. Anglo’s South American copper assets are the honey that attracted BHP, the world’s largest mining company. 

There is a global scramble for the red metal for the green transition, and finding and developing new deposits will be arduous and costly. 

The rebuff could set the stage for a sweetened proposal or even a hostile takeover bid. The saga has also underscored the aversion global miners have for South Africa’s high-risk environment, with the logistics crisis now compounding the power woes. 

Meanwhile, BHP’s shares closed 4.6% lower today, with investors concerned that the world’s biggest miner might have to increase its offer. 

For now, the house of Anglo is still standing. BHP’s next move will be extremely interesting. 

In the meantime, the company has declined to comment on Anglo’s rejection of its proposal. It has until 22 May 2024 to either announce a firm intention to make an offer for Anglo American or not. DM

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