Thungela Resources Australia will buy the majority stake in Sungela Holdings, which will acquire an 85% interest in the Ensham coal mine from Idemitsu Australia and its subsidiary, Bligh Coal, located 40km east of Queensland, Australia
South Africa-based thermal coal exporter Thungela Resources has agreed to acquire 85% of the Ensham coal mine, located 40km east of Queensland, Australia, for A$340m ($240m).
The company, through its subsidiary Thungela Resources Australia, has signed an agreement with Swiss investment group Audley Energy and Australia-based Mayfair.
Under the terms of the agreement, Thungela Resources Australia will obtain a majority stake in Sungela Holdings, a newly incorporated limited liability company.
Sungela Holdings, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, will acquire an 85% interest in the Ensham Joint Venture from Idemitsu Australia and its subsidiary, Bligh Coal.
It will also acquire Idemitsu’s 85% stake in Ensham Coal Sales, 100% of Ensham Resources, which is the operator of the Ensham coal mine, and 85% stake in Nogoa Pastoral and Nogoa Pastoral Joint Venture.
Thungela Resources, in a statement, said: “The Transaction delivers on Thungela’s strategy to pursue geographic diversification, and is in a commodity we understand well and in which we can leverage our core skills.
“The Transaction also satisfies our investment evaluation criteria of responsible stewardship, upgrading our asset portfolio and maximising shareholder value.
“The Transaction is a step towards de-risking our underlying business and bolstering our resilience, recognising the ongoing infrastructure challenges in South Africa.”
Ensham coal mine is the primary asset of the Ensham Joint Venture and includes several tenements within the well-established southern Bowen Basin in Queensland, Australia.
The mine is currently 85% owned by Idemitsu, with the remaining 15% owned by LX International (LXI), through its subsidiary Bowen Investment.
Ensham was initially established as an open-cut mine, which has been an underground operation since 2012.
The coal mine produced around 3.2Mt of high-quality, low-ash and low-sulphur thermal coal in 2022, and has the potential for increased production in the future.
Ensham coal mine has a life of mine through to 2039, subject to extension of the existing mining approvals, said the coal mining company.