Rio Tinto had considered a bid for BHP-target Anglo American, AFR says

By Thomson Reuters May 9, 2024 | 10:27 PM

(Reuters) – Mining giant Rio Tinto had considered an offer for British miner Anglo American, which is now BHP Group’s $39 billion takeover target, the Australian Financial Review reported on Friday.

Rio “management had not ruled out making a play for part or all of the mining group and continued to study the day-to-day situation,” the AFR reported, citing sources close to Rio.

The report did not say why Rio did not make a bid, but said there is no suggestion that Rio is about to make an alternative bid.

At Rio’s Australian AGM in Brisbane last week, chair Dominic Barton told shareholders in response to a question about whether it was thinking of making a rival bid for Anglo, “Our policy is we don’t speculate or comment on M&A activity.”

Rio Tinto declined to comment.

Daniel Sullivan, the portfolio manager of Janus Henderson Investors’ global natural resources fund said Rio should not stand against BHP trying to takeover Anglo but instead should look at smaller copper and lithium miners.

(Reporting by Rishav Chatterjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza)