Rio raises bid for Riversdale
RIO Tinto Ltd has increased its offer price for Riversdale Mining Ltd and extended the offer period in what the mining giant said would be its final bid. A slow take-up prompted Rio Tinto to increase its offer price for the Mozambique-focused coal miner to $ 16.50 from $ 16, provided the suitor gains more than a 50 per cent interest in Riversdale by March 23. The price would not go beyond $ 16.50 unless a rival bid emerged, Rio Tinto said. Riversdale’s board has backed the bid, with Rio’s current stake about 17 per cent. But, major Riversdale shareholders India’s Tata Steel and Brazilian steelmaker CSN, which increased their stakes to a combined 47 per cent, have resisted Rio Tinto’s move, with an eye to protecting their interests in coal projects in Mozambique. Rio Tinto energy chief executive Doug Ritchie said Riversdale shareholders would not get a better bid and risked their share price returning to pre-bid levels if they did not take up the offer.