First Reserve deal spree continues with copper buyout

First Reserve Corporation, a specialist energy sector-focused buyout firm, has continued its dealmaking spree with the €670m acquisition of a European mining company.

First Reserve Corporation acquired Metallum Holdings, a European base metal refining and recycling company, for €670 million.

The deal value is understood to comprise €470 million in equity from the firm’s most recent fund, which raised $9 billion in 2009, and €300 million in debt financing, provided by French bank BNP Paribas. French boutique Messier Maris et Associés advised First Reserve on the deal.

The acquisition is the latest in a slew of deals by the firm, which has completed six deals including bolt-on acquisitions in the last six months.

It invested €225 million last month for a 45 percent stake in Ansaldo Energia, a power plant division of aerospace conglomerate Finmeccanica.

Metallum affords a unique opportunity to gain exposure to the copper market without taking the single asset, geological, development or country risk typically associated with a business of this size.

Alex Williams



In February, First Reserve and peer Riverstone Holdings sold engine and fuelling products manufacturer Dresser to GE Energy for €3 billion. Two months earlier, the firm sold its 80% stake in Bahamas Oil Refining Company’s oil storage terminal to energy investment group Buckeye Partners in a $1.36 billion deal.

Alex Williams, a director of First Reserve, said: “Metallum Group affords First Reserve a unique opportunity to gain exposure to the tight copper market without taking the single asset, geological, development or country risk that is typically associated with a business of this size.

“We are excited to support a proven management team to execute on their strategy to increase capacity, make operational improvements and implement their acquisition plan. The company’s  technological edge in recycling ultra low grade scrap back into copper adds further strength to the platform and underpins its competitive advantage.”