The value of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals in Australia’s metals and mining industry increased by 367.4 per cent during the fourth quarter of 2019.
Australian M&A deals reached $US3.37 billion ($5.2 billion) during the fourth quarter, which marked a rise of 169.5 per cent compared with the last four-quarter average of $US1.25 billion.
The higher deals’ value was despite slower deal activity in the sector, with 48 deals recorded during the fourth quarter, marking a drop of 22.6 per cent over the previous quarter and a drop of 9.4 per cent over the last four-quarter average.
Australia held a 16.7 per cent share of the global metals & mining industry M&A deal value that totalled $US20.22 billion in the fourth quarter.
GlobalData tracks real-time data concerning all M&A deals, private equity/venture capital and asset transaction activity around the world.
The sale of Super Pit in Kalgoorlie Lake View in Western Australia was a major contributor to the M&A data during the quarter.
This US$800 million acquisition by Northern Star Resources was the biggest deal of the period, giving the company a 50 per cent stake in the Kalgoorlie gold mine, in a deal struck with United States-based giant Newmont Goldcorp.
Earlier in November, Saracen Mineral Holdings sealed a $US750 million deal with Canada-based Barrick Gold to snap up the other half-share in the mine.
The Super Pit sale marked the first time in the 30-year history of the Kalgoorlie Super Pit gold mine that the mine is owned completely by Australian companies.
The Super Pit has already contributed to a 22 per cent rise in gold production for Saracen, leading to a record 216,452 ounces during the December quarter.