16/06/2014 - 13:13

Aquila, MinRes halt trade ahead of 'potential transaction'

16/06/2014 - 13:13
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Aquila Resources and Mineral Resources placed their shares in a trading halt this morning, ahead of an announcement regarding a “potential corporate transaction”, due Wednesday.

Drilling operations at Aquila's West Pilbara iron ore project.

Aquila Resources and Mineral Resources placed their shares in a trading halt this morning, ahead of an announcement regarding a “potential corporate transaction”, due Wednesday.

The moves followed MinRes buying 12 per cent of Aquila’s stock last week for $187 million, potentially throwing a $1.4 billion takeover bid by China’s Baosteel and rail operator Aurizon into disarray.

MinRes said last week the motivation for the transaction was to have first dibs on developing and operating Aquila’s West Pilbara iron ore project.

Market speculation is rampant that MinRes is putting together its own proposal to acquire Aquila, but neither of the companies gave any extra details in their ASX announcements.

Baosteel and Aurizon have already stated they would not increase their offer price of $3.40 per share, or extend the offer’s July 11 deadline, despite the potential rival bid from MinRes.

Aquila’s shares last traded at $3.13, while MinRes shares entered today’s halt at $9.55. 

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