TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese trading house Mitsui & Co (8031.T) may boost its stake in Brazil’s Vale SA (VALE3.SA) if other shareholders sell part of their holdings, a senior executive said, giving it greater influence over the iron ore giant’s management.
Several Brazilian pension funds and BNDESPar, the investment arm of state development bank BNDES have been considering the sale of part of their stakes in Vale, equating to about 3 percent of the miner’s shares in total and worth up to 8 billion reais ($2 billion).
Buying an additional stake was “an option”, Yukio Takebe, Mitsui’s senior executive managing officer who oversees the energy and metals business, told Reuters in an interview on Thursday.
“We want to keep being involved in Vale’s management in the future,” Takebe said. Mitsui, one of Vale’s four controlling shareholders under its previous dual-share structure, currently has two positions on the miner’s 11-member board.
The sale of Vale stakes has been a subject of market speculation since the world’s largest iron ore miner moved to a single class of stock in October. Mitsui currently holds a 5.51 percent stake in Vale.
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