Melbourne, May 21: Indian-owned steel conglomerate Arcelor-Mittal has acquired a 14.9 per cent stake in Australia's Macarthur Coal and entered into discussions with company regarding a potential transaction. Macarthur, the supplier of over a third of the world's pulverised coal, said Arcelor-Mittal had "approached Macarthur Coal in respect of a potential transaction"
According to the Daily Telegraph, Arcelor-Mittal has bought its 14.9 per cent stake in Macarthur through two special crossings at 20.00 Australian dollars per share. Shares in the company jumped 1.82 dollars or 9.9 per cent to 20.20 dollars by Wednesday morning. Arcelor-Mittal produced about 116 million tonnes of crude steel in 2007, representing about ten per cent of world steel output. Macarthur was in the headlines last month after the company revealed a third party regarding a takeover had approached it.
Market speculation suggests Xstrata, Brazilian miner Vale - the world's largest producer of iron ore - and Rio Tinto and private US coal group AIMS as having approached Macarthur founder Ken Talbot about his 24 per cent stake in the company.
Macarthur Coal produces pulverised or coking coal, which is used in the production of steel, and thermal coal, used to generate electricity.