ENDEAVOUR Mining would focus on reducing debt rather than chasing additional merger and acquisition opportunities after acknowledging that its bid for Centamin had gone cold, according to a report by Reuters.
In December, Endeavour Mining unveiled an all-share merger proposal with Centamin. The idea was rebuffed by Centamin, however, which said the terms of the proposal undervalued the company. In the end, Endeavour decided not to make a formal offer.
Speaking to Reuters on the sidelines of the Mining Indaba conference in Cape Town, Centamin, CEO Sebastien de Montessus said: “Like many first dates, if it doesn’t go well at the end of the first date, then you move on. We came to a conclusion on both sides that we were not understanding each other.”
Asked whether he saw other potential targets, he said Endeavour would focus on de-leveraging this year instead. “Despite the fact there might be a lot of mines on Tinder, we don’t have to go and play on Tinder,” he said, referring to the dating app.
“We’d like to raise our babies,” he said, referring to the company’s existing projects. Endeavour has two gold mines in Burkina Faso and two in Cote d’Ivoire, and an exploration project in Mali.
The gold sector has been consolidating fast. Last year was a bumper year for M&A with $35.1bn worth of deals, double the 2018 total, Refinitiv data shows.
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