Walter Energy buying Western Coal for $3.2B to create met coal major

Nov 18, 2010 | 11:42 AM | Lisa Gordon

Walter Energy Inc. has offered Canadian $3.3 billion ($3.2 billion) to acquire all outstanding shares of Western Coal Corp. in a deal that would create one of the world's largest publicly traded producers of metallurgical coke.

"From a strategic perspective, a transaction with Western Coal would be transformational for our company," Joe Leonard, Tampa, Fla.-based Walter's interim chief executive officer, said.

Operating in the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States, Vancouver, British Columbia-based Western Coal has entered into an exclusivity agreement that would give its shareholders cash and shares in Walter. The per-share price of C$11.50 ($11.26) that Walter would pay represents a 55.8-percent premium to the stock's Nov. 17 close at C$7.38 per share on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The share value shot up to an intraday high of C$11.05 ($10.82) Thursday before closing at C$10.72 ($10.48).....

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