Mon, Jun 06, 2011 - Page 10 News List

Resourcehouse cancels plan to list in Hong Kong again

AFP, HONG KONG

Australian miner Resourcehouse has canceled its plan to list in Hong Kong for the fourth time, citing unfavorable global market conditions, in an offering originally aimed to raise up to US$3.6 billion.

The unprofitable firm, controlled by billionaire Clive Palmer, had put off three previous attempts to list on the Hong Kong stock exchange since 2009 before the latest cancelation announced late on Saturday.

“The board of the company has decided not to proceed with the proposed global offering at this time given global market conditions and the fact that they continued to decline during and after the company’s international roadshow,” the Brisbane-based firm said on its Web site.

The miner had planned to sell 5.716 billion shares for between HK$4.48 and HK$4.93 each, with a listing on the Hong Kong exchange planned for Friday.

Dow Jones Newswires reported last Friday that the company was considering shrinking the size of the initial public offering (IPO) to US$2.54 billion, amid growing concern over the eurozone’s debt woes and slower growth in China.

Palmer, however, remained confident about the company’s prospects and emerging markets like China, which has been scouring the globe in search of commodities to power its economy, despite the cancelation of the Hong Kong share sale.

“Emerging economies like China and India will continue to be the key engine of global growth, with positive implications for the demand of thermal coal, iron ore and other natural resources,” the billionaire said in the statement.

A listing in Hong Kong would have allowed the firm to boost its profile in China, while the company had planned to use a large part of the proceeds from the IPO to fund a thermal-coal project and iron-ore project in Australia.

Resourcehouse shelved its IPO plan for the third time in March after markets were roiled by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

It originally planned to list in November 2009, but postponed a roadshow as it prepared for an investment by Metallurgical Corp of China.

Metallurgical, which bought a 5 percent stake in Resourcehouse for US$200 million, said in February that it would start an investor roadshow for the Hong Kong IPO, but the miner pulled back again as stock markets were hammered by Greece’s debt woes.

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