ENRC a step closer to go private

Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (LON:ENRC), the London-listed giant miner wrestling with a series of accusations of corruption and bribery, took a major step towards being de-listed Friday, after the largest investor backed the founders’ US$4.5 billion takeover.

Almost 99% of Kazakhstan-based natural resources firm Kazakhmys voted in favour of allowing the company’s 26% stake in its rival to be used to back the bid.

The bidders, ENRC’s three founders and the Kazakh government, already own close to 54% of ENRC. With Kazakhmys’ support they control now more than 75% of the diversified miner, which makes it almost certain the company will de-list its shares from the stock market following the formality of putting the deal to its shareholders.

ENRC has been in talks with the Serious Fraud Office since 2011 over a series of problems within its Kazakh operations, as well as a subsequent internal inquiry into the company’s business in Africa.

Last April, the miner suspended one of its managers in Mozambique, where it has several coal assets over fresh whistleblowing allegations.

The Serious Fraud Office is currently looking into a report that accuses staff of misusing funds to buy a horse farm and guesthouse.

Image of ENRC African operations, courtesy of ENRC