Anglo-American wins right to buy Bock's pounds 300m Lonrho stake
This would lift Anglo's holding in Lonrho to just under 30 per cent and provide the springboard for it to take charge of the group's platinum, gold and coal interests when the demerger of Lonrho's mining interests from its trading and hotels business takes place this summer. Anglo, which together with its asociates now owns 10 per cent of Lonrho, already had the option to buy Mr Bock's 18.4 per cent stake if he chose to sell.
Under the put and call deal agreed yesterday, Anglo has the right to buy Mr Bock's 143.5 million shares at 220p while he can force a sale at 180p.
The agreement is due to be exercised at the point of demerger. Anglo will buy Mr Bock's stake in the mining operations and tender its stake in the non-mining businesses in the subsequent flotation.
Mr Bock will use the proceeds from Anglo to acquire a 25 per cent stake in the quoted non-mining company which will own Lonrho's trading and hotel operations and will inherit the bulk of Lonrho's pounds 430m debt. Oliver Baring of SBC Warburg, which brokered the deal on behalf of Anglo, said: "I don't think Anglo is in bid mode but this puts them in a strong position where they can do all sorts of things."
A full takeover of Lonrho's mining operations could cause problems with competition authorities because it would increase Anglo's dominance of the platinum market, where it is the world's biggest producer.
But what interests Anglo more is Lonrho's 43 per cent shareholding in the Ghana-based gold producer Ashanti and its Duiker coal mining interests.
Announcing the agreement yesterday, Lonrho said it had decided that a closer partnership was necessary with Anglo to facilitate the separation of its mining and non-mining businesses.
Anglo meanwhile said it would co-operate with Lonrho to develop its gold and coal interests in Africa. A senior Anglo technical director has also been appointed to the Lonrho board.
"This allows people to get to know each other ... to go forward together in the demerger," Anglo spokesman Michael Spicer said.
The put and call arrangement will remain in place until 13 September, 1997. It values Mr Bock's stake at between pounds 260m and pounds 315m compared with a value at last night's 207.5p closing price of pounds 297m.
That's some guestlist! Stunning images show huge dynastic wedding between Ultra-Orthodox Jewish families which attracted 25,000 guests
Man and woman arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder victim of Woolwich machete attack, named as Drummer Lee Rigby
'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
Video: Woolwich attack - man with bloodied hands and knife addresses camera
Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, the mother-of-two hailed as a hero for confronting Woolwich attackers, thought: 'better me than a child'
- 1 Man and woman arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder victim of Woolwich machete attack, named as Drummer Lee Rigby
- 2 'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
- 3 Grace Dent: I’m not sure how these people can avoid being called ‘bigots’. And the more ‘civilised’, the worse they are
- 4 Woolwich murder: They killed, then they performed - these men should be starved of our attention
- 5 Woolwich attack: The EDL will seek to exploit this evil crime for their own evil ends
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.