African Rainbow Minerals: Bid to merge local platinum assets

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African Rainbow Minerals (ARM), the mining company founded by billionaire Patrice Motsepe, is seeking to merge platinum assets in South Africa to improve profit margins. “The platinum industry is ring-fenced by little boundaries and no one is making any money,” Mike Schmidt, the chief executive of ARM, said last week. There was “duplication of capital, duplication of infrastructure, duplication of resources, power, water, people. It’s not very sensible.” ARM’s platinum unit operates the Modikwa mine, a venture with Anglo American Platinum, and the Two Rivers venture with Impala Platinum Holdings. “ARM believes it is in a unique position with its partnership with the two biggest majors to allow us to manage, mine, operate and go to a level of consolidation,” Schmidt said. The company was increasing annual output at Modikwa to 240 000 tons of ore from 200 000 tons as it sought to improve margins. ARM’s shares lost 2.77 percent to close at R213.90 on the JSE yesterday. – Bloomberg

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