ENRC shareholder Alexander Machkevitch announces takeover bid

Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation's (ENRC) shares surged Friday after major shareholder Alexander Machkevitch said he was considering a takeover bid for the Kazakh miner.

Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation's (ENRC) shares surged Friday after major shareholder Alexander Machkevitch said he was considering a takeover bid for the Kazakh miner.

The Jewish billionaire released a statement saying he was seeking a consortium with fellow shareholders Alijan Ibragimov, Patokh Chodiev and the Kazakh government to make an offer for the company.

Machkevitch, Chodiev and Ibragimov together own nearly 44% of the firm which has iron ore, ferroalloy and power-production operations in Kazakhstan.

Machkevitch said deliberations are at an early stage and there can be no certainty that an offer will ultimately be made for ENRC but he was reviewing a number of potential opportunities.

A spokeswoman for ENRC could not immediately be reached for comment.

The stock was up as much as 27% at 291.8p in afternoon trade in London. By the close on Thursday, the stock had slumped over 19% since the start of the year.

The news comes in the wake of an investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) into the company's dealings with law firm Dechert.

The SFO sent a demand for documents to the law firm after it was fired by ENRC just weeks before it was due to unveil its findings of an investigation into the mining company's business practices in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The Section 2a notice, which the SFO uses as a way of securing documents, suggests the UK prospector is weighing the launch of a formal criminal inquiry into the FTSE 100 mining company.

Dechert looked into ENRC's issues including potentially fraudulent payments of at least $100m over four years. Another report into ENRC's African mines is pending.

RD

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