No more speculation: BHP’s spin-off will be called South32

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Image credit: BHP Billiton website

BHP Billiton has revealed that its spin-off company will be named South 32 in recognition of the latitude where its major operations are based: South Africa and Australia.

Image credit: BHP Billiton website
Image credit: BHP Billiton website

“The naming of South32 is a major step in the setup of our company. Our heritage and the places in which we operate are an important part of our identity.  While South32 is grounded in the southern hemisphere, we will retain our global reach and ambition as we seek to exceed the expectations of a global shareholder base. The diversity of our employees, commodities, customers and communities will give the new company great strength, which is represented by the woven pattern of our logo,” said Graham Kerr, Chief Executive Officer Elect of South32 in a news release.

“Many of our assets are among the most attractive in their respective commodities and all have benefited from BHP Billiton’s structured approach to improving safety and performance. As we move to a regional model and develop a fit-for-purpose strategy, we have the potential to further improve performance. This would enable South32’s assets to reach their full potential and benefit our shareholders, employees and communities.”

The Anglo-Australian group also revealed that South32 will be situated in Perth and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. South32 will also be listed in Johannesburg and London.

South32 will be comprised of BHP’s “non-core” aluminium, coal, nickel, silver and manganese assets in Australia, South Africa, Brazil and Colombia.

The demerger, which was announced four months ago, is set to be completed in the first half of 2015.

BHP Billiton expects to release all shareholder documentation with full details of the proposed demerger in March 2015, with a shareholder vote scheduled in May.