Barrick Gold considering $19 billion bid for rival Newmont Mining

Canada’s Barrick Gold Corp is studying an audacious US$19 billion bid for rival gold giant Newmont Mining Corp, according to a report by Canadian newspaper the Globe and Mail.

The potential mega-merger would resemble one of the largest ever deals in the mining sector and closely follows Barrick’s US$6.1 billion of Randgold Resources last month, as well as Newmont’s $10 billion buyout of Goldcorp Inc.

Newmont’s deal to buy Goldcorp is set to make the US-based company the world’s largest gold producer, ahead of Barrick. However, if Barrick’s bid were to be successful, the Newmont-Goldcorp merger would be called off and Barrick would be liable for a $650 million break fee, according to the report.

The Globe and Mail also reported that Barrick would flip some of Newmont’s assets to Australia’s Newcrest Mining, citing industry sources familiar with the situation. Under the terms, Barrick would keep Newmont’s Nevada and African mines, with Newcrest possibly taking over its Australian operations.

Barrick and Newmont have long been touted as a potential match due to their overlapping assets in Nevada and were close to a merger back in 2014, before talks broke down at the last minute over disagreements on the terms of the deal.