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Australia’s OZ Minerals turns down BHP’s €5.638m purchase

Australian miner Oz Minerals said on Monday it had rejected an offer to buy BHP for about 8,300 million local dollars (US$5,735 million or €5,638 million) on the grounds that it was “highly opportunistic” and undervalued the company.

Oz Minerals, a copper and nickel miner, said BHP sent a voluntary, conditional and non-binding offer to buy all its shares at A$25 (US$17.27 or €17) each on August 5.

Oz Minerals managing director and chief executive Andrew Cole said in a statement that the minerals the company mines in “quality locations” not only “have strong long-term growth potential” but are also attractive due to “global electrification and decarbonisation efforts”.

BHP, which has raw material supply agreements with Tesla, Toyota and Ford through its Nickel West division, announced last week its intentions to increase investment in nickel exploration over the next two years to meet growing demand for the metal used in the manufacture of batteries for electric vehicles.

“Our proposal represents compelling value and will provide OZ Minerals shareholders with confidence in the face of a deteriorating external environment and growing financial challenges associated with growth and its operations,” BHP chief executive Mike Henry also said in a statement.

The rejection of the offer sent Oz Minerals shares up nearly 35% by mid-morning to A$25.49 (US$17.64 or €17.33), while BHP rose 0.7% to A$39.07 (US$27.04 or €26.56). EFE