Australian court okays BHP takeover of OZ Minerals

Oz Minerals’ Carrapateena and Prominent Hill (pictured here) mines are in proximity to BHP’s Olympic Dam complex and Oak Dam deposit. (Image courtesy of Oz Minerals.)

BHP (ASX, NYSE, LON: BHP) said on Monday that the Federal Court of Australia had approved its A$9.6 billion ($6.44 billion) takeover of copper-gold producer OZ Minerals (ASX: OZL), the miner’s biggest deal in more than a decade.

The court decision was the final hurdle for BHP to acquire OZ Minerals and follows overwhelming support from the target company’s shareholders for the deal, with 98.33% of Friday’s votes in favour of the transaction.

The takeover, BHP’s largest deal since the $12.1 billion purchase of Petrohawk Energy in 2011, will boost the company’s exposure to copper and nickel, two metals that are essential for the transition to renewable energy and electric vehicles. 

The figure is the third largest in global mining in recent months, right after Glencore’s $22.5 billion bid for Teck Resources and Newmont’s $19.5 billion offer for Newcrest.

Chief executive Mike Henry said the acquisition was a strategic move to position BHP for long-term growth and value creation.

OZ Minerals owns two operating copper and gold mines in South Australia, Carrapateena and Prominent Hill, as well as the West Musgrave nickel and copper project in Western Australia. 

The operations are located near BHP’s Olympic Dam copper hub and Nickel West, creating opportunities for operational synergies and cost savings.

Shares in OZ will stop trading in Sydney at the close on Tuesday.