Hudbay Minerals to acquire Copper Mountain mine in British Columbia for $439m

Copper Mountain mine – Image courtesy of Copper Mountain Mining Corporation

Major shareholders for both Copper Mountain (TSX: CMMC) and Hudbay Minerals (TSX, NYSE: HBM) are supporting a takeover that will see Hudbay acquire the B.C. copper mine for close to C$600 million.

Copper Mountain operates a single mine near Princeton. It is just the latest B.C. copper miner to become an acquisition target by larger companies hungry for copper.

A planned acquisition of Australia’s Newcrest Mining (TSX,ASX:NCM) by Newmont Corp. (TSX:NGT,NYSE:NEM)  – a pureplay gold miner — is said to be all about adding copper to Newmont’s stable of gold mines. Newmont’s B.C. mines includes a 70% share of the Red Chris copper-gold mine.

Hudbay, a Canadian company headquartered in Toronto, owns a gold-zinc-copper mine in Manitoba, an open-pit copper mine in Peru and development projects in Arizona and Nevada. Adding Copper Mountain to its portfolio would make Hudbay Canada’s third largest copper producer.

Zeta Resources, which owns 9.96% of Copper Mountain, and Mitsubishi Materials Corp., which owns 25%, have signalled their approval of the acquisition.

“We fully support the combination of Hudbay and Copper Mountain,” said Katsuyoshi Isaji, president of Mitsubishi Materials Co.’s  Metals Company.

“We have long respected the operating expertise of Hudbay and are excited to further our relationship as joint venture partners. We believe that the Copper Mountain Mine is a high-quality asset, and we look forward to continuing to unlock its full potential for the benefit of all stakeholders.”

GMT Capital, which owns 11.7% of Hudbay Minerals, has likewise signalled its approval of the acquisition.

Hudbay is offering C$2.67 per share – C$593 million ($439m) for Copper Mountain. Under the terms of the offer, each Copper Mountain shareholder will receive 0.381 of a Hudbay common share per Copper Mountain share.

The acquisition offer will go to a shareholder vote June 13.

(This article first appeared in Business in Vancouver)