Hindalco Identifies 10 Overseas Copper Mines For Acquisition

Mumbai, Aug 24 | Updated: Aug 25 2004, 05:30am hrs
AV Birla group company Hindalco has identified 10 overseas copper mines, for acquisition, to grow its copper business. Hindalco managing director D Bhattacharya said that there are 10 mines on the companys radar at present. They are situated in Brazil, Peru, Chile and Australia.

The company wants to acquire mines to meet its copper requirement, so that it can be the lowest producer of copper. Mr Bhattacharya said, "After aluminium, the company wants to be a cost leader in copper."

With the commissioning of the brownfield expansion in Birla Copper at Dahej in Gujarat, where the capacity was ramped up to 2.5 lakh tonne per annum, the enhanced capacity has positioned the division amongst the top 20 per cent low cost producers globally.

The company is aspiring to be among the top 10 per cent low cost copper producers worldwide.

Globe Trotter

Price increase of 20 per cent across the brand portfolio
Hindalco identifies 10 overseas copper mines for acquisition
Two mines already acquired in Australia
Copper smelter capacity to double to 5 lakh TPA by next year
Aspired to be one of the lowest copper producing companies

The company plans to double its copper smelter capacity from the present 2.5 lakh tonne per annum to 5 lakh tonne per annum by August next year. The company is looking at acquisitions, to fulfil 40 per cent of its total requirement. At the companys annual general meeting, AV Birla group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla had stated that the company wants to meet 40 per cent of its requirement from its captive mines.

Presently, the company obtains 20 per cent of its copper requirements from the two mines it acquired in Australia. The rest is imported. Last year, Hindalco acquired Mount Gordon in Queensland for a gross consideration of Australian $21 million.

Mt Gordan has an estimated reserves of 2.12 lakh tonne of copper in-concentrate and produces 48,000 tonne of copper cathodes annually. Prior to that, it acquired Nifty Mines in western Australia for a total equity consideration of Australian $79.80 million.

There is not much scope for copper mines acquisitions in India as most of the domestic mines are with Hindustan Copper.