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June 27, 2017

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Rio sticks with revised Yancoal offer

RIO Tinto yesterday recommended shareholders accept an improved offer from Yancoal for its Australian coal assets, after the China-backed firm trumped a fresh bid from Swiss commodities giant Glencore.

Rio, the world’s second-largest miner, said in January that it was selling Coal & Allied to Yancoal Australia — majority-controlled by China’s Yanzhou Coal — for US$2.45 billion.

But Glencore, which like Yancoal operates several coal mines in Australia, offered US$100 million more for the assets in New South Wales state.

Rio last week said it still favored Yancoal since the deal was expected to be completed faster due to greater funding and regulatory certainty, leading Glencore to deliver a fresh US$2.675 billion bid over the weekend.

Yancoal came back with its own improved US$2.69 billion offer yesterday.

“The revised offer from Yancoal of US$2.69 billion offers compelling value to our shareholders for our Australian thermal coal assets,” said Chief Executive Jean-Sebastien Jacques.

“This sale process has been in progress for a long period of time and we believe it is in the best interests of our shareholders to take the greater certainty of Yancoal’s strong proposal.”

Yancoal already has the green light from Australian regulators.


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