CQ miner pitches expansion plans to investors

TWO years after ending the uncertainty surrounding the future of Callide's thermal coal mine, Batchfire has pitched an expansion plan to investors.

The company, which bought the Callide thermal mine from Anglo American in October 2016, wants to raise up to $100million debt and is considering an equity investment.

Australian Financial Review reported that according to a teaser document sent to potential funders, the process is due to heat up when indicative offers are due to boutique adviser EAC Partners.

The pitch is slated to help Batchfire double production at the CQ mine to 14 million tonnes a year, which would enable the company to significantly increase the amount of coal sold to international customers.

Potential investors have been asked to think about a $624-million-a-year business at the revenue line by 2023.

The mine supplies 5.6 million tonnes of coal a year to Callide power stations and 1.4 million tonnes a year to Queensland Alumina Limited.

Callide mine has operated since 1944 producing low-sulphur, sub-bituminous thermal coal primarily for domestic power generation and alumina refining.

When Batchfire's 100 per cent acquisition of the mine was announced in November 2016, chief executive Peter Westerhuis said the operation had a "bright long-term future".

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