Barrick Gold is considering selling its stake in Acacia, say sources – by John Tilak and Nicole Mordant (Business Day – July 26, 2016)

Reuters – THE world’s largest gold producer, Barrick Gold Corp, is weighing the sale of its majority stake in African unit Acacia Mining Plc and has approached several South African miners, according to sources familiar with the situation.

The potential sale would be part of Barrick’s broader strategy of selling noncore assets to reduce its debt load. The Toronto-based company offloaded stakes in several mines last year.

The talks are at an early stage and there is no assurance a deal will be done, the sources said. Barrick owns 64% of Acacia, a London-listed miner with three producing gold mines in Tanzania: Bulyanhulu, Buzwagi and North Mara. Much of the remainder of Acacia is widely held.

Acacia also has exploration projects in the East African country and other parts of Africa. Acacia has a market capitalisation of about $2.93bn, making Barrick’s stake worth around $1.9bn.

Barrick has reached out to South African miners Harmony Gold Mining, Sibanye Gold, AngloGold Ashanti, Randgold & Exploration and Gold Fields, as well as some Australian and North American miners, said the sources, who declined to be identified as the matter is not public.

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