BHP Billiton reacts to demerger speculation

Harriet Green
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BHP Billiton has issued a statement in response to so-called “market speculation” about its decisions on simplifying its portfolio.

The response comes after the Australian Financial Review reported that the miner has been weighing up different options for over a year, including spinning off non-core assets, in a move that could see a new $20bn (£12bn) resources company.

Sources cited by the Financial Review said no final decision has been made when it comes to the streamlining plans, though.

This morning, BHP has reiterated that simplification is “a priority”, highlighting the divestments it’s made globally and across commodities.

We believe that a portfolio focused on our major iron ore, copper, coal and petroleum assets would retain the benefits of diversification, generate stronger growth in free cash flow and a superior return on investment.

By increasing our focus on these four pillars, with potash as a potential fifth, we will be able to more quickly improve the productivity and performance of our largest businesses.

The group stressed that “any course of action remains subject to detailed review and an assessment of alternatives.”