Tanzania: Barrick Gold Gains Full Control of Acacia in Tanzania

The biggest gold mining firm in Tanzania Barrick Gold fully acquired Acacia Mining after a Dar es Salaam court approved the takeover on September 13. This saw Barrick's board rearranged and Acacia's delisting and shares suspended from the London Stock Exchange.

Barrick also acquired all outstanding Acacia-issued shares giving it full control of Acacia's Tanzanian market and operations, and effectively making Acacia a minor shareholder in Barrick Gold.

"The scheme became effective on September 17 and we now own 100 per cent of Acacia. We will manage the sites directly under the Barrick banner through our African and Middle East region," said Barrick in a statement to The East African.

Acacia had earlier announced that September 16 was the last day of dealing of its shares at the London Stock Exchange, and that, "once suspended, it is not expected that trading in Acacia shares will recommence." The London Stock Exchange posted the same on its Main Market bulletin on September 18.

The buyout deal ends a five-year legal tussle for Barrick since handing over operations and management of its Buzwagi, Bulyanhulu and North Mara mines to Acacia.

Barrick Gold's president and chief executive Mark Bristow in a memo to Acacia's shareholders, management and employees said that the mining firm's shareholders will become Barrick Gold shareholders, the common shares of which are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange. He also announced the resignation of all but two Acacia directors, who now join the Barrick board as new Acacia directors. Barrick will also close the London office to reduce corporate overheads.

Previously, Barrick owned 64 per cent of Acacia's shares and has now acquired the remaining 36 per cent at a price of 0.153 Barrick shares for each Acacia ordinary share.

The deal is expected to appease the Tanzanian government which in May announced its intention to "cut all ties" with Acacia Mining and instead only work with Barrick in seeking solutions to a two-and-a-half-year dispute over gold and copper concentrate exports.

Barrick is expected to appoint a general manager and reopen the North Mara mine.

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