Majority Inmet shareholders accept First Quantum's C$5.1-bn hostle bid

First Quantum Minerals yesterday said that a majority of Inmet Mining Corp shareholders have supported its unsolicited $5.1-billion takeover offer, which will now give the Canadian miner control of one of the world's largest untapped copper deposits.

Vancouver-based First Quantum said that about 85.5 per cent of Inmet Mining's outstanding shares have been tendered to its takeover proposal and that it has extended the offer to 1 April for the remaining shares not yet tendered.

The board of Inmet Mining, which had rejected the offer, yesterday asked its shareholders to tender their shares to the deal.

In October 2012 First Quantum had made a cash-and-stock bid of C$62.50 per share, before sweetening the bid in November to C$70 a share. Both the unsolicited offers were rejected by the board of Inmet, which also adopted a shareholders right plan or ''poison pill'' in order to make the takeover very expensive.

Philip Pascall, First Quantum's chairman and CEO, said, "We are delighted to have successfully completed the Offer and are grateful for the overwhelming support that Inmet shareholders have shown for our vision of a new global leader in copper. This transaction is a substantial advancement in our long-stated objective of geographical diversification.''

''We are now focused on turning the vision into reality by putting together the great strengths of both companies - their high-quality mining assets and their equally high-quality human resources - to create a new global leader in copper with a far broader and more geographically diversified and dynamic portfolio of operating and development assets than either company on a standalone basis,'' he added.