Canada can’t build great mining companies fast enough to meet demand – by Alisha Hiyate (Northern Miner – April 25, 2023)

Mining runs on M&A — one of the only constants in a business that’s full of uncertainty. Still, it’s been painful to watch so many home-grown metals and mining companies disappear in recent years.

They include: Alcan, which Rio Tinto bought in 2007 for US$37.6 billion; Falconbridge, which was acquired by Xstrata in 2006 for US$17.4 billion; Inco, which went to Vale that same year in a deal worth US$17.2 billion; and Goldcorp, which Newmont paid US$10 billion for in 2019. Soon, Vancouver-based Teck Resources, which is being pursued by Swiss-based Glencore, could join the list.

Teck’s board has rejected Glencore’s US$23.2-billion bid (mostly shares, with an up to US$8.2 billion cash component for shareholders who don’t want exposure to coal and oil), first made public in early April. But if Teck shareholders reject the company’s plan for a spinoff of its metallurgical coal assets in a vote scheduled for tomorrow, the board would need to sit down with Glencore, which has signalled it’s willing to pay more for the diversified miner.

The problem is, it takes time to build companies worth acquiring. Alcan was founded in 1902; Falconbridge in 1928, Inco in 1902, and Goldcorp in 1994. Teck celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013. Glencore already owns the historic Falconbridge assets, acquired via a US$31-billion takeover of Xstrata in 2013.

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