Glencore bids for Anglo American’s coal mines in Australia — report

Mining and commodities giant Glencore (LON:GLEN) and Apollo Minerals (ASX:AON) are said to have made a joint bid for Anglo American's (LON:AAL) metallurgical coal mines in Australia, valued at up to $1.5 billion.

According to The Australian (subs. required), the companies are offering $1 billion for both Grosvenor and Moranbah mines, only days ahead of the June 6 deadline set by Anglo for final bids.

Other firms that have also circled the coal mines at various stages of the process include BHP Billion, South32 and X2, with varying reports as to which remain in contention.

The Queensland-based operations have been up for sale since February, when chief executive officer Mark Cutifani singled out the assets the firm had decided to offload after a prolonged commodities rout left it with high levels of debt.

He said at the time that Anglo American expected to generate between $3bn and $4bn from asset sales this year.

Other firms have also circled the coal mines at various stages of the process, including BHP Billion (ASX, NYSE:BHP), South32 (ASX:S32) and X2, with varying reports as to which remain in contention.

From those, Glencore is the one that has been more vocal about its intentions to take advantage of the merger and acquisitions opportunities in the market at the moment. In march, CEO Ivan Glasenberg said he was “looking at everything,” as long as the asset purchases wouldn’t undermine the company’s balance sheet.

Last month, Anglo sold its 70% stake in Foxleigh coal mine, also located in Queensland, to a consortium led by Taurus Fund Management, an Australian fund manager that invests in the commodities industry. The total amount was not disclosed.