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Shares in Aquarius Platinum soar nearly 40% as Sibanye Gold plans buyout

by , 06 October 2015

Earlier this morning, Aquarius Platinum shares shot higher after Sibanye Gold made an offer for all the shares in the company. Shares in Sibanye also rose on the news.

This comes less than a month after Sibanye bought Anglo American Platinum's Rustenburg platinum operations.

Let's take a closer look at the deal between Aquarius and Sibanye…

Sibanye’s offer for Aquarius amounts to R4 billion

It looks like Sibanye Gold [JSE:SGL] will take over Aquarius Platinum [JSE:AQL] after the Aquarius board “recommended shareholders vote in favour of Sibanye’s all cash $294 billion [R4 billion] offer,” reports IOL. Sir Nigel Rudd, the chairman of Aquarius, says the proposal is “fair and reasonable, and in the best interests of Aquarius’ shareholders”.

The news set shares of Aquarius Platinum soaring on the “cash offer of $0.195 per share,” says BDLive. This translates into R2.66 a share.

Sibanye, the large gold producer in SA, is “increasing its exposure” to platinum after buying assets from Anglo American Platinum last month, notes Bloomberg. Aquarius’ main asset is its “Kroondal venture with Anglo Platinum,” which is close to the other assets Sibanye bought from Anglo Platinum.

Aquarius also has a stake in the Mimosa operation with Impala Platinum in Zimbabwe, adds Bloomberg.

Sibanye sees cost savings and improved efficiency from the deal

Adding the Aquarius acquisition to its Anglo Platinum assets means that Sibanye can “consolidate the operations,” reports MineWeb. This will save on costs, improve efficiency and result in “optimal use of existing underground infrastructure and improved operational planning”.

Neal Froneman, the CEO at Sibanye, said acquiring Aquarius is “an important strategic step,” adds IOL. The company believes it will realise “substantial value for stakeholders”.

At time of writing, shares in Aquarius were trading 39.41% higher at R2.37. Shares in Sibanye were trading 8.76% higher at R19.50.

Time will tell if shareholders give the deal their blessing, but the market’s certainly welcomed the deal.

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Shares in Aquarius Platinum soar nearly 40% as Sibanye Gold plans buyout
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