Rio Tinto Mulls Public Listing of Canadian Iron Ore Unit

Rio Tinto (RIO) is exploring an option to publicly list its Iron Ore Company of Canada business as the mining giant aims to improve revenue from its flagship Australian assets, Reuters reported, citing banking and industry sources.

Iron Ore is one of Canada’s biggest producers of iron ore. In 2017, it generated revenue of $1.9 billion. It is 59% owned by Rio Tinto, 26% by Mitsubishi Corp. and 15% by Labrador Iron Ore Royalty Company.

The Anglo-Australian mining major had contemplated to sell its stake six years ago but held plans back, saying the sale was not essential. A source from the banking industry told Reuters that offers from private equity funds and competing miners had not met Rio’s target of between $3.5 billion and $4 billion back then.

The company is now considering an IPO of its stake on the Toronto Stock Exchange but the process is in the initial stage and the miner has yet to hire a financial adviser for the transaction, the source told Reuters.