99.8% Of Barrick Shareholders Support Randgold Merger
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(Kitco News) - Nearly 100% of Barrick Gold Corporation shareholders (NYSE: ABX, TSX: ABX) voted in favor of a merger with Randgold Resources, clearing one more hurdle that paves way for the creation of the world’s biggest gold producer.
In a press release Monday, following a special shareholder vote, the company said that 99.8% or more than 683 million votes cast were in support of the merger. Only 1.2 million votes were withheld.
“Today marks an important step in our journey of taking Barrick ‘back to the future’,” said Barrick Executive Chairman John L. Thornton, in the press release. “The combination of Barrick and Randgold will create the compelling gold investment.”
The all-stock merger, valued at more than $18 billion was first announced in late September during the Denver Gold Forum in Colorado. The deal would create a $6 billion gold mining company.
Many analysts have said that the deal could help to breathe new life in the much-neglected mining sector. Many have noted that the willingness of two major gold producer to make a deal could signal growing optimism in the marketplace.
“Barrick wouldn’t have made this move if they thought prices were going to be lower a year from now,’ Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management, said in an interview with Kitco News following the initial announcement. “Companies are starting to see value in their own sector and that sends a strong message to investors. I think Barrick sees a strategic opportunity to grow their business and add value.”
The merger is expected to be completed by the new year and is still subject to approval by Randgold’s shareholders.
The news is not having much impact on Barrick shares, traded on the New York Stock Exchange. The company last traded at $13.11 a share, down 0.46% on the day.
In the same special meeting, Barrick shareholders also voted overwhelming in favor of moving the jurisdiction of the company to British Columbia, Canada.