Whitehaven Coal will pay up to $US4.1 billion ($6.4 billion) to acquire two BHP coking coal mines in Queensland in a deal saluted by its investors, who bid up Whitehaven shares by more than $650 million in a rebuke to activist Bell Rock’s prediction that buying the mines would destroy shareholder value, Australian Financial Review reports.
The sale decision furthers BHP's push to exit its coal operations in Queensland, after the world's largest-listed miner sold out of the South Walker Creek and Poitrel coal mines last year, according to Reuters.
Mr Paul Flynn, CEO & Managing Director of Whitehaven, said:
“This is a compelling transaction for Whitehaven that accelerates our strategy, transforms our company and delivers substantial value for our shareholders.
“This transformational acquisition will pivot our portfolio towards metallurgical coal, which has been a core pillar of our strategy for many years making this a better balanced business. Our thermal coal business remains strategically important as we continue to provide much-needed coal products to support the global energy transition and as customers seek our high-quality and high-CV products to limit their emissions”.