Sweden’s billionaire Lundin family is looking to spend as much as $3 billion on a new industrial-metal asset as prices rally, before turning its attention to scouring for a new gold project.
Lundin Mining Corp. is on the prowl for a long-life zinc, nickel or copper asset and would shell out $1 billion to $3 billion, Lukas Lundin said in an interview Wednesday from the BMO Global Metals & Mining Conference in Florida. An existing operation is his preference and copper “might be the easiest asset to work with.”
The ideal asset would produce more than 500 million tons of ore if it were an open-pit mine, or 100 million tons if it were an underground operation, he said. “I’m looking around right now,” he said. “It would be great to do something by the end of the year.”
With his younger brother Ian Lundin, the 59-year-old oversees a global family business with stakes in commodities including industrial metals, gold, diamonds, oil, uranium and Latin American cattle. The company has about $1.5 billion in cash but could afford to borrow to fund a larger acquisition, he said.
Lundin Mining bought a controlling stake in Freeport-McMoRan Inc.’s Candelaria/Ojos del Salado copper operations in Chile in 2014 and the Eagle nickel and copper mine in Michigan from Rio Tinto Group in 2013.
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