EMR secures $124m copper acquisition from Vale, African Rainbow Minerals

Australian private equity firm EMR Capital plans to acquire Vale and African Rainbow Minerals’ (ARM) stake in the Lubambe copper mine in Zambia.

According to ARM, it has agreed with Brazil’s Vale to sell their combined 80 per cent interest in the mine to Melbourne-based EMR for $US97.1 million ($124.14 million) in cash.

Johannesburg-listed ARM has been looking to offload its stake in the Lubambe mine since September last year when it reported a 1.4 billion Rand ($134 million) impairment at the Zambian operation. Both Vale and ARM own 40 per cent of the mine each.

EMR chief executive officer Jason Chang said the Lubambe acquisition reflected the firm’s confidence in the quality of the project as a long-life copper producer located in Zambia’s most prolific mining region, the Copperbelt.

“We are pleased to enter into an agreement to acquire Lubambe, which offers exceptional quality and growth potential and which will substantially enhance the value and depth of our copper portfolio,” Chang said.

Earlier this year, the private equity firm, which is chaired by industry stalwart Owen Hegarty, completed a $US210 million acquisition of the Golden Grove copper-zinc mine in Western Australia.

The Lubambe agreement also follows the closure of EMR’s second private equity fund at $US860 million. EMR manages mining investments worth more than $US2 billion.

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