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Last Updated: Tuesday, 7 August 2007, 08:31 GMT 09:31 UK
Xstrata tables $1bn S African bid
Falconbridge mine workers
Xstrata is one of the world's largest coal miners
Mining group Xstrata has launched a $1bn (500m) takeover of South African platinum producer Eland Platinum.

Xstrata, which is Swiss-based but listed on the London Stock Exchange, said it had the support of investors controlling 51% of Eland's shares.

The bid also had the backing of Eland's board of directors, Xstrata said.

Commodity and metals prices have been pushed to record levels by strong demand, prompting mergers as firms look to boost output and cut costs.

"We believe that Eland's production of concentrate in the very near term and strong growth pipeline provide an ideal platform from which to grow a world class platinum group metals business," Xstrata said.

Xstrata has been on the acquisition trail and last year bought Canadian nickel miner Falconbridge.

It has since tried to buy Canada's LionOre and Australia's Gloucester Coal.

Xstrata said that its offer for Eland was 53% higher than the average share price when calculated over a 30-day period and valued the company at 105 rand (7.35) per share.

The company also announced that it earned a net profit of $3bn during the six months to 30 June, as higher prices helped to offset production costs and the effect of strike action in Chile and Canada.

Xstrata sells off aluminium unit
11 Apr 07 |  Business
Xstrata buys second Canadian firm
26 Mar 07 |  Business
Buyouts boost profits at Xstrata
06 Mar 07 |  Business
Xstrata wins Falconbridge battle
15 Aug 06 |  Business
Record metal prices boost Xstrata
02 Aug 06 |  Business
Xstrata closes in on Falconbridge
31 Jul 06 |  Business

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