* Richardson, Glencore to be top two W.Canada grain handlers
* Regulator still reviewing Glencore-Agrium deal
By Rod Nickel
WINNIPEG, Manitoba, Dec 20 Canadian grain
handler Richardson International Ltd said on Thursday it has
received approval from Canada's Competition Bureau for its
C$800-million ($808 million) purchase of some country elevators,
port grain-terminal space and processing plants from Glencore
Privately held Richardson said it plans to close the
transaction, which involves some of the assets Glencore acquired
in its C$6.1-billion takeover of Viterra Inc this month, as soon
as possible in 2013.
The takeover of Viterra and the break-up of its parts will
leave Glencore and Winnipeg-based Richardson as roughly
equal-sized grain handlers in Western Canada, each with about
one-third of the region's grain-handling capacity.
From Glencore Richardson will get 19 elevators and attached
farm retail centers, a 25 percent interest in the Cascadia
terminal at Port Metro Vancouver, a port storage terminal at
Thunder Bay, Ontario, as well as several oat processing plants
and a wheat mill.
Swiss-based Glencore also plans to sell the bulk of
Viterra's former farm retail outlets to Agrium Inc for
C$575 million, and Viterra's 34 percent stake in the Canadian
Fertilizer Ltd plant in Medicine Hat, Alberta, to CF Industries
Holdings Inc for C$915 million.
Agrium spokesman Richard Downey said the Competition
Bureau's review of the Agrium-Glencore transaction will take
longer, given the number of farm retail outlets Agrium would
Some farmers have said Agrium would gain too much clout in
becoming Canada's biggest retail seller of seed, chemicals and
fertilizer, since it also produces nitrogen on a wholesale