Buying BHP shares? Here's what's happening with the Anglo American takeover

BHP's Mike Henry and Anglo American's Duncan Wanblad are manoeuvring for shareholder approval.

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Buying BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) shares?

Then you've probably been following along with the ongoing saga surrounding the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) mining giant's takeover bid for Anglo American (LSE: AAL).

BHP shares leapt into global headlines on 26 April after the company lobbed a roughly $60 billion offer to acquire Anglo American.

The ASX 200 miner's main focus here is Anglo's copper assets. Copper prices have been soaring and are widely expected to remain elevated over the longer term amid the world's push towards electrification.

If BHP's takeover succeeds, the Aussie miner will take the mantle of the world's biggest copper producer.

As you're likely aware, Anglo American's board rejected BHP's initial offer as significantly undervaluing its assets and growth potential. The board also believes the offer is too complicated and poses risks for Anglo shareholders.

Yesterday we learned that BHP had come back with an improved takeover offer valued at around $64 billion. An offer that Anglo American's board again rejected.

Commenting on the developments yesterday, CEO Mike Henry said:

BHP put forward a revised proposal to the Anglo American board that we strongly believe would be a win-win for BHP and Anglo American shareholders. We are disappointed that this second proposal has been rejected.

BHP shares closed down 0.2% yesterday.

Will BHP shares ever encompass Anglo American's assets?

How Anglo American shareholders will respond to the latest BHP takeover offer remains to be seen.

In the latest developments, Anglo American announced it would divest its platinum and diamond businesses and sell its Queensland-based coal mines.

Some analysts have flagged this as a move to potentially thwart BHP's acquisition, as Anglo's coking coal assets in Queensland would mesh well with BHP's operations in the state.

If BHP shares were to encompass Anglo American's assets, the ASX 200 miner would also look to divest a number of the company's assets. Those include Anglo's platinum and iron ore projects in South Africa, and likely its nickel assets as well.

Anglo-American shareholders are now faced with a decision of whether to back Anglo CEO Duncan Wanblad and his vision for the company's future or BHP's Henry.

Addressing Anglo American's turnaround plan Wanblad said (quoted by Bloomberg), "We don't need BHP to deliver this strategy, we absolutely do not need them at all. We can deliver this."

Henry had a different take.

"Shareholders must decide which plan creates the greatest value, soonest. Which team has the better track record of execution," he said.

BHP shares are up 2.6% in morning trade today.

Stay tuned!

Motley Fool contributor Bernd Struben has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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