The Australian

Newcrest’s Tefler mine up for grabs

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The starting gun has been fired for the sale of Newcrest’s Telfer gold and copper mine in Western Australia, with flyer documents sent out to potential buyers this month.

Tefler is among at least $1 billion of resources assets currently up for sale nationally.

Adviser Bank of America Merrill Lynch is said to have reached out to a wide range of potential bidders, such as Australia’s Newmont Mining, Northern Star and Regis Resources, along with South Africa’s Gold Fields and China’s Zijin Group.

One source said a smaller operator could scale down the country’s second-largest goldmine to boost profitabil­ity.

Newcrest has not previously offered any insight into the value of the Telfer gold and copper mine, which is one of Australia’s largest.

However, there is a suggestion it could sell for between $400 million and $500m.

The moves by miners to divest projects come as part of a global trend for major resources companies to reposition portfolios to shore up cash positions as commodity prices tumble.

First-round bids have already been submitted for a Credit Suisserun process to sell Barrick Gold’s mines.

It is understood that Zijin, Newcrest, Gold Fields and Regis are also likely to be among the groups that have submitted bids for Barrick’s NSW Cowal mine, which may sell for $500m.

Operationa­l issues at Barrick’s Pogera mine in PNG could make a sale of that asset more challengin­g.

There are also questions around whether prospectiv­e acquirers would buy into what is thought to be a very aggressive business plan by Barrick for the project.

The company is banking on expansions that some argue are low grade.

Anglo American’s sale process for its Queensland coal assets, also being run through BAML, is expect to be launched in May.

The London-based miner is selling the Callide coalmine in Queensland, along with stakes in the Dawson and Foxleigh mines in the state. Its mothballed Dartbrook mine in NSW is also on offer. La Mancha’s Australian gold assets are also for sale through Rothschild, with Evolution Mining said to be an interested buyer.

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