03 December 2011 – The Times
The billionaire brothers, David and Simon Reuben, made their fortune in mining and natural resources before turning to areas such as property Alan Davidson/The Picture Library Ltd
The billionaire brothers, David and Simon Reuben, have teamed up with Transasia Minerals to invest in an Indonesian coal and mineral exploration project.
The duo, who first made their fortune in the mining and natural resources sector before turning to other areas such as property, have agreed to buy a 30 per cent stake in Asian Metal Resources Corporation. The brothers are buying their stake through their Reuben Brothers Resources arm.
Transasia, a mining company owned by Uzbekistan’s Aslanov family but headquartered in Jakarta, will hold the majority 70 per cent stake. The Reubens have also retained an option to increase their holdings to 49 per cent at a later stage.
No financial details of the transaction have been disclosed but it is thought the brothers could pay an initial $500 million in equity and debt, which would value the entire venture including debt at $1.7 billion.
The Asian Metal Resources Corporation joint venture will buy and develop coal, copper, gold and nickel mining interests in Borneo, Sumbawa, Sulawesi and other surrounding islands. Many of the 17,000 Indonesian islands are believed to be vastly mineral rich with some of the world’s largest deposits of coal, goal, copper and tin and is one of southeast Asia’s largest economies.
Transasia told Reuters yesterday: “The Reuben Brothers have huge experience and knowledge in terms of the business of natural resources, and attract the support of the world’s largest institutions as a result.”
The Reuben brothers, who rank 114th on the 2011 Forbes Rich List with an estimated joint wealth of $8 billion, have long been active in the natural resources sector. They first made their name and fortune through their Russian aluminium company — Trans-world Metals — before selling it and investing in other sectors.
The Mumbai-born duo’s natural resources division already has investments in wind farms, mining and oil trading companies.