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MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Singapore's Viant Commodities PTE Ltd said on Wednesday it has launched a joint venture with European copper products maker KME in Switzerland.
The venture, Tekvalia AG, will be based in Zug and will focus on trading and distribution of copper products and services through the supply chain in Europe, Viant Commodities Managing Director Rene van der Kam told Reuters.
"Viant in Singapore is very well capitalized, and it is enjoying very strong support from its banks, and we will leverage that to our European entities," van der Kam said.
"Tekvalia is not a sourcer to, or off-taker from KME," he said. "If that happens at all, it will be at arms' length. This is really to facilitate third-party business."
Tekvalia will be owned 51 percent by Viant and 49 percent. KME.
KME is one of the world's biggest copper product makers, with 15 production plants including in Germany, France, Italy Spain, China and the US, and is unit of Italy's diversified Intek Group SpA (IKG.MI).
Van der Kam set up Viant Commodities in June last year with offices in Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai and 15 staff, after Gunvor dismantled its metals trading business.
The trading house will offer structuring and some financing along the value chain including for scrap, semi-refined and finished products. It will retain its own Viant Commodities AG entity, launched in March, run by Vadim Linchevsky.
Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell