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Consumer focus on Asia…

By 2030, Indonesia will be the fourth largest consumer market behind China, India and the US. Asia already accounts for 55% of global consumers, but by 2030 Asia and developing markets are forecast to see such extensive growth in consumer numbers that they overtake established markets such as the UK, France and Spain.

BHP targets EV sector with nickel takeover

BHP Group, the world’s largest miner, on Wednesday (20 Oct) raised its offer for Canadian nickel miner Noront Resources to C$419m ($339m/£246m).

It has been locked in a takeover battle with Wyloo Metals, Noront’s largest shareholder, for a number of months as the two vie for the control of a secure supply of one of the key metals used in electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

BHP’s latest bid equates to C$0.75 per share, an improvement on Wyloo’s most recent offer of C$0.70 per share.

Should BHP’s bid prove successful it will take control of Noront’s Eagle’s Nest high-grade nickel assets in Canada’s so-called ‘Ring of Fire’ region, as well as copper and palladium assets.

Noront has 22 days in which to accept the offer and while BHP said it had the firm’s backing for its bid, it only needed 50% of the shareholders to vote in favour for the bid to be successful.

Credit: Parilov/ Shutterstock

AutoStore to become Norway’s largest IPO in 20 years

Norwegian robotics firm AutoStore on Wednesday (20 Oct) announced its listing on the Oslo Stock Exchange would be at the top of its target range, valuing the company at NOK103.5bn ($12.4bn/£9bn).

This would make the SoftBank-backed company the most valuable new listing since Statoil (now known as Equinor) debuted in 2001 with a valuation of NOK151bn.

AutoStore supplies robots to automate warehouses across more than 35 countries, with customers including Asda, Gucci and Lufthansa.

In April, Japan’s SoftBank bought a 40% stake in the company for $2.8bn, valuing it at around $7bn, and it remains a key shareholder ahead of the IPO. AutoStore noted: “SoftBank is a very good partner, ready to help us drive more attention in the APAC region. We see a lot of potential with the relationship.”

Credit: MOLPIX/
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