The deal was initially announced in May 2019, but in November, the EU antitrust regulators stepped in to potentially block the deal. The resulting business could have potentially held “a dominant position in the procurement of copper scrap for refining”.
However, the deal – worth € 380 million – has now been approved, according to a press release from Aurubis. Metallo is seen to compliment Aurubis’ core expertise, according to Aurubis AG Executive Board Chairman Roland Harings. Metallo typically processes more difficult scrap sources with lower metal contents.
Metallo’s tin business will now form part of the Aurubis portfolio. Aurubis already produces precious metals, selenium, lead, and nickel, as well as copper.
Metallo processes some 315,000 tonnes of scrap and recycling materials a year at its plants in Belgium and Spain. In 2019, the company produced around 9,300 tonnes of tin from its two plants, making the world’s 8th largest refined tin producer.
Our view: While it is unlikely that the acquisition by Aurubis will change Metallo’s tin business in the short-term, Aurubis was keen to emphasise its expanding metals portfolio. This could mean greater investment in the tin recycling business in the future.