NEW HOPE FOR MACARTHUR COAL

Written on the 16 April 2010

NEW HOPE FOR MACARTHUR COAL

NEW Hope Corporation (NHC) has joined the acquisition frenzy surrounding Macarthur Coal (MCC) today, launching a $3.7 billion takeover proposal at $14.58 per share.

The offer comes during a war of words between Macarthur and US coal giant Peabody, whose $14 per share proposal has been rejected ahead of an MCC meeting on Monday.

The meeting will vote on a proposed $1.2 billion transaction involving a takeover of Gloucester Coal, as well as increased ownership of MCC for Hong Kong-based Noble Group.

The Macarthur board has been adamant that Peabody’s offers can’t match the benefits from the deals to go to vote on Monday, because they do not consider future growth for the company or the coal industry.

In a release today the New Hope board says it believes the proposal is superior to the Gloucester transaction and Peabody’s indicative proposal.

“The board of New Hope believes that a merger of the two companies is in the best interests of both New Hope and Macarthur shareholders and is a superior proposal to the Gloucester transaction.”

“The merged entity will have a diverse range of geographical locations, mines, infrastructure and products with five operating coal mines shipping through two coal terminals.”

Macarthur Coal directors including CEO Nicole Hollows (pictured) will meet on April 19 to vote on the Gloucester transaction.


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