De Beers Makes Rare Acquisition by Buying Canadian Diamond Mine – by Thomas Biesheuvel (Bloomberg News – July 19, 2018)

De Beers has made a rare acquisition, buying a Canadian company, as the world’s biggest diamond producer seeks to replace closing mines in the country.

The unit of Anglo American Plc agreed to buy Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. for about $81 million, giving it control of the Chidliak diamond resource in northern Canada, the company said in a statement Thursday. De Beers rarely buys assets, partly because it owns some of the best gem mines in the world.

The company has been seeking to increase its exposure to Canada to lessen its dependence on its traditional southern African assets.

It closed the ill-founded Snap Lake mine in the country last year, and its Victor mine there is also set to close in 2019. That would leave its newly built Gahcho Kue mine, in which it owns 51 percent, as its only non-African producing asset.

Canadian production has long helped give De Beers leverage when it negotiates sales rights with host governments in southern Africa, especially Botswana, where its two biggest mines are located.

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