Nathan Tinkler.NATHAN Tinkler’s Aston Resources and its Gunnedah coalfield neighbour Whitehaven Coal have confirmed a merger to be announced this morning.
The new name of the company is yet to be announced.
The two companies confirmed last week that talks were under way but the official statements played down the chances of success.
This morning, presentations to investors have been posted on both company websites, announcing the creation of ”a leading independent Australian coal company”.
Aston owns the proposed Maules Creek open cut mine while Whitehaven has the large Narrabri underground mine and a series of smaller open-cuts including Werris Creek Sunnyside, Tarrawonga and Rocglen.
On current share prices the new company would have a market capitalisation of more than $5 billion.
The proposed new company board has Aston deputy chairman Mark Vaile as the new chairman with Whitehaven chairman John Conde as deputy chairman.
Whitehaven managing director Tony Haggarty is MD of the new company.
Nathan Tinkler, who has 31.6 per cent of Aston shares, says he will support the merger ”in the absence of a superior proposal”.
The deal is expected to be completed in April next year.