Downer to offload blasting business for $62m

Downer is set to sell its Downer Blasting Services business to Enaex S.A. after signing an agreement with the Chilean company.

Enaex S.A. is a subsidiary of Sidgo Coppers Group, the largest producer of explosive-grade ammonium nitrate in Latin America.

Valued at $62 million, the proposed transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and conditions that are expected to be finalised before the end of March next year.

Downer chief executive Grant Fenn said the company was in discussions with “a number of interested parties” to sell its remaining mining business, after flagging its intention to become an urban services provider last year.

“The sale of Downer Blasting Services follows the sale of the Snowden consulting business and also our share in the RTL Mining and Earthworks joint venture,” Fenn said.

“We are in active discussions with a number of interested parties in relation to the rest of the mining portfolio.”

Downer had earlier stated that the divestment of its mining business was a short term objective due to the capital intensive nature of this part of its business.

Downer Blasting Services was one of the largest blasting contractors in Australia’s mining industry, specialising in open cut blasting, underground blasting, maintenance and emulsion manufacturing.

The business has more than 45 explosives delivery systems, five emulsion-manufacturing facilities and 150 workers.

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