Rinehart’s Redstone Over Finish Line, Pips Fortescue for Atlas Iron

- July 31st, 2018

Redstone’s cash offer of AU$0.042 per share has been declared unconditional, with the offer set to close by this Friday.

The battle for ownership of the small Australian iron miner Atlas Iron (ASX:AGO) is at an end, with Gina Rinehart’s Redstone Corporation declaring its cash offer for the acquisition of its shares is now unconditional.

In a release from Rinehart’s company, Hancock Prospecting—the owner of Redstone—reiterated that the leadership of Atlas was in favor of the takeover and had encouraged shareholders to accept.

CEO of Hancock, Garry Korte said, “in recommending that shareholders accept the offer, the chairman of Atlas made explicitly clear in his letter in the target’s statement that the offer price represents a premium to Atlas’ historical trading values and provides certainty of value.”

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Redstone’s offer is for the acquisition of all the ordinary shares in Atlas it doesn’t already own for AU$0.042 per share. The offer is due to close at the end of this week, on August 3.

Atlas Iron has been the target of three major companies over the past few weeks, with iron major Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG) stepping in on a planned takeover by Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN), before Redstone made its own move on Atlas, purchasing a slightly larger share in the company before going all in with a takeover bid.

Atlas had been planning to merge with Mineral Resources in a deal announced in April that was going to be completed next month, but the majors decided to join the party at the 11th hour after sensing opportunity in Atlas’ stake in North West Infrastructure, which has development plans for two new port berths at Port Hedland.

Port Hedland is a major shipping terminal for iron ore mined in the Pilbara, and a keystone piece of both Fortescue and Gina Rinehart’s operations.

Even news from the Western Australian government that the berths were reserved for junior miners—a classification the government questioned Atlas’ right to claim, didn’t dissuade the majors which kept fighting over the small company.

The battle comes to an end just as Atlas releases its June quarter results, revealing the company has cash issues —but it is proving to be quite productive with an increase in iron ore shipped in the June quarter.

On the ASX, Atlas shares were trading at AU$0.042—exactly the cash offer from Redstone.

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Securities Disclosure: I, Scott Tibballs, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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