Whitehaven Coal Ltd, an independent coal producer in the Gunnedah Basin of New South Wales, Australia, has announced that it will undertake a formal process to identify potential buyers.
“The Whitehaven Board believes that Whitehaven has significant strategic value,” Tony Haggarty, managing director of Whitehaven, said. “It is one of Australia’s few remaining substantial independent coal producers. It has a very large resource of high quality coal, is the leading producer in the Gunnedah Basin region of New South Wales and has substantial port and rail access.”
Interest in the Australian miner is likely to high. US miners, Alpha Natual Resources and Peabody Energy have been identified as potential bidders, with Peabody making no secret of its desire to secure further Australian assets, following its unsuccessful attempt to buy Macarther Coal in a AU$ 3.8 billion hostile bid.
Chinese companies could also be interested as that country looks to secure supplies of coal.
The formal process is expected to take a number of months and may or may not result in a proposal being made or recommended by the Board.
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