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Report: Hudbay could attract PE interest for Ariz. copper mine stake

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Report: Hudbay could attract PE interest for Ariz. copper mine stake

Hudbay Minerals Inc. is planning to sell a 30% stake in the Arizona Rosemont project, which could attract interest from private equity firms and other financial suitors, Bloomberg News reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

Pressed by activist shareholder Waterton Global Resource Management, the Toronto-based base metal mining company plans to conduct a review of its portfolio and is looking for an adviser for the planned stake sale. A process could begin in the coming months, the people reportedly said.

Adding a committed joint venture partner for the copper mine project is among the options that will be considered, a Hudbay representative told the news outlet.

Waterton, which owns a 12.09% stake in Hudbay, had called on the company to evaluate its portfolio on grounds of mismanagement. Hudbay and the private equity firm ended their proxy fight earlier in May after agreeing to a board reshuffle that would see Alan Hibben stepping down as chairman of the company.

Hudbay expects the Rosemont project to be the third-largest copper mine in the U.S. once it begins production. Located in Tucson, Ariz., the project will be an open pit mine producing copper, molybdenum and silver, according to the company's website.

Hudbay has not made any final decisions on the stake sale and could still opt against it, the people told Bloomberg.