Glencore buys up Viterra

COMMODITIES giant Glencore yesterday sealed a £3.9bn deal to buy Canadian grain handler Viterra.

Glencore, which is also in the throes of a $36bn (£22bn) takeover of FTSE 100 miner Xstrata, has previously said it would like to expand its operations in agriculture.

Shareholders accounting for 16.5 per cent of Viterra’s stock, including the company’s largest investor, Alberta Investment Management, have already pledged their support for the deal. The offer is worth C$16.5 a share.

The remainder of Viterra’s investors will vote at a special meeting expected in May. Viterra will pay Glencore a C$185m break fee if it accepts a better offer from another party, or if its board withdraws or modifies its recommendation.

Glencore will pay for Viterra using existing cash resources and credit facilities, but has said it would offload the majority of Viterra’s Canadian assets to Richardson International and Agrium for around C$2.6bn in cash.