Mining giant Grupo Mexico offers $2.9 billion for Asarco; tops bid by India’s Sterlite

Grupo Mexico offers $2.9 billion for Asarco

DENVER — Grupo Mexico SAB offered $2.9 billion Tuesday to regain control of Arizona-based Asarco LLC and pull it out of bankruptcy protection, topping a bid from India’s largest copper producer.

The two mining giants are seeking Asarco’s assets, including three U.S. copper mines and a smelter. The Tucson-based Asarco has been attempting to reorganize under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection since 2005.

Under terms of its amended Chapter 11 plan, Grupo Mexico’s affiliate, Americas Mining Corp., would contribute $2.9 billion, which includes $1.3 billion in cash and $1.3 billion in escrow plus cash Asarco has on hand.

In April, Mumbai-based Sterlite Industries Ltd., a subsidiary of Vedanta Resources PLC, offered $1.1 billion in cash and a $600 million note.

A third plan came from hedge fund Harbinger Capital Partners, which Grupo Mexico said included $500 million in cash but no collateral.

The plans are pending before a U.S. bankruptcy judge in Texas overseeing the case.

Asarco’s debts include more than $5 billion in claims for asbestos-related environmental cleanup and damages.

Grupo Mexico purchased Asarco in 1999 but lost control after Asarco filed for bankruptcy reorganization.


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