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anglo-american_416x416Anglo American Plc is facing a showdown with its biggest investor, South Africa’s state-owned Public Investment Corp (PIC), which wants the miner’s prized platinum assets included in any divestment of its local operations.

PIC, which owns about 14.5% of Anglo, is insisting platinum is included in the suite of coal and iron ore assets that the miner is considering spinning off.

That presents a major hurdle to Anglo Chief Executive Officer Mark Cutifani, who says platinum is one of the company’s core commodities, along with copper and diamonds.

Anglo American Platinum Ltd is the world’s biggest producer of the metal and 70% of global production comes from South Africa. The London-based Sunday Telegraph reported yesterday that Anglo had convinced the PIC to drop its platinum request, without saying where it got the information.

Anglo Assets

Anglo favours a spinoff of its iron-ore and thermal-coal assets in South Africa, rather than selling them piecemeal, a person close to the company said Monday, asking not to be identified.

The miner still wants to generate cash from any divestment to pay down debt, another person close to the company said.

The PIC, Africa’s biggest fund manager, wants to create a locally owned mining giant to increase black ownership of companies and generate income for the pensions it oversees.

If Anglo goes forward with a spinoff, the PIC could own about 30% of the company, a person familiar with the matter said in October.

“Our role is to make Anglo more South African-owned and controlled,” said Dan Matjila, Chief Executive Officer, PIC, in an interview on 10 October.

 

 

 

 

-Bloomberg

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