AFTER months of bickering, Nkululeko Mining Company is going to take up the 15% empowerment stake in Zimbabwe Platinum Mines (Zimplats), businessdigest can reveal.
Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd (Implats), the world’s second largest platinum producer, holds an 82% stake in Zimplats.
In an interview, Zimplats chief executive officer Mike Houston confirmed that Nkululeko was now their empowerment partner.
“We are dealing with Nkululeko Mining Company and it’s now our empowerment partner,” Houston said.
He said they were no longer dealing with Needgate Investments and other companies which were also vying for the 15% stake.
“We dropped Needgate and National Investment Trust (NIT). NIT failed to raise the money that was required to acquire the stake,” he said.
However, Houston refused to disclose how the transaction was going to take place and what Nkululeko was going to pay for the stake.
“Zimplats cannot comment on the issue alone because we are working together with Nkululeko. We are going to issue a joint statement,” he said.
Houston said Barbican Holdings, which wanted to take up the stake, also failed to raise the money.
Needgate, led by McDonald Chapfika, wanted to acquire 13 390 437 shares in Zimplats for about $147 billion but, according to media reports, Mines minister Amos Midzi refused to sanction the deal.
The 15% stake was initially earmarked for NIT, a government empowerment trust, which after failing to raise the requisite funds ceded its exclusive rights to Needgate.