Vale closes sale of fertilizer business to Mosaic for $1.4 billion

Brazil’s Vale (NYSE:VALE), the world’s largest iron ore and nickel miner, has officially closed the sale of its fertilizer business to US-based Mosaic Co. (NYSE:MOS), the No.1 producer of phosphate fertilizer, in a deal worth about $1.4 billion, considerably less than the $2.5bn originally estimated.

The transaction, part of Vale’s strategy to cut debt and focus on its core businesses, excludes the TIPLAM port, located in Brazil’s south-eastern Santos city and which was originally included in the deal. The Minnesota-based company, however, has been granted the right to use that terminal.

Back in December 2016, when the deal was first announced, Mosaic had agreed to pay the highest amount for Vale’s stake in Peru's Bayovar mine, the firm’s Kronau potash project in Canada and most of its phosphate assets in Brazil, including the terminal, but excluding the nitrogen and phosphate assets in Cubatão, which will be bought by Norwegian chemical company Yara for $255 million.

The sale ends Vale’s supremacy on the phosphate market in Brazil, which in turn is the planet's fifth-biggest user of fertilizer.