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Sources Say Harry Winston, KKR, Apollo Global Could Buy Ekati

Insiders estimate the sale could be completed within one month.
Mar 14, 2012 12:26 PM   By Jeff Miller
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RAPAPORT... Harry Winston and investment groups KKR & Co. and Apollo Global Management are reportedly negotiating with BHP Billiton to buy the Ekati diamond mine in Canada, according to Bloomberg News. BHP already sold its stake in the Chidliak diamond project to Peregrine Diamonds after the mining giant decided to sell-off its diamond assets in November 2011. BHP stated in February that it expected to complete reviewing all options for the Ekati mine by June.

Citing anonymous sources, Bloomberg reported that the Ekati deal could yield a sale of between $500 million to $750 million and be finalized within a month.

Harry Winston, which should be reporting fiscal-year results shortly,  holds a 40 percent stake in the Diavik diamond mine while Rio Tinto owns the majority share.

Ekati production fell 32 percent to 938,000 carats and revenue dropped 16 percent to $357 million for the six months that ended on December 31, 2011.

Tags: BHP Billiton, diamond, ekati, Harry Winston, Jeff Miller, mines
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