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April 27 (Reuters) - France’s ERAMET said on Friday it will make an all-cash takeover bid for Australia’s Mineral Deposits Ltd at A$1.46 a share, valuing the company at about A$288 million ($218 million).
ERAMET said the offer, pitched at a 26 percent premium to Mineral Deposits’ closing price on Thursday, would enable the full consolidation of the TiZir joint venture, in which each company has a 50 percent stake.
The venture, formed in 2011, operates a titanium dioxide and zircon business in Senegal and Norway.
“For ERAMET, this is a logical step, in line with the Group’s strategy, that consolidates the ownership of the TiZir asset within its portfolio at a time when the Group has improved financial flexibility,” ERAMET Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Christel Bories said in a statement.
The French firm said it has a relevant interest in Mineral Deposits of 13.3 percent, made up of an 8 percent direct stake and pre-bid acceptances from investors who own 5.3 percent of the company’s shares.
$1 = 1.3235 Australian dollars Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin