Rio Tinto plans to sell its assets at Lochaber, Scotland, to SIMEC for $410 million. The transaction includes Rio Tinto’s interest in Alcan Aluminium UK Ltd., which includes an operating smelter, the hydroelectric facilities at Kinlochleven and Lochaber, as well as all associated land.
“This is a value-creating sale for Rio Tinto and represents another example of refining our portfolio to focus on our suite of tier one assets,” said Rio Tinto Aluminum Chief Executive Alf Barrios. “At the same time, our priority has been to ensure a long-term sustainable future for Lochaber and economic benefit for the wider Fort William community. There was significant interest in the assets, but SIMEC is committed to continuing operations at the smelter and working with the community on further economic development.”
SIMEC’s intention is that the smelter will be operated by the Liberty House Group, its sister company within the international GFG Alliance.
“This is a significant boost to our renewables portfolio and will be another major step toward reducing our carbon footprint in metals production,” said GFG Alliance Strategic Board Executive Chairman Sanjeev Gupta. “This is a natural next step for us in our Scottish investment program and is a springboard for wider manufacturing growth, creating many more jobs in Scotland. We are grateful for the continuing support of the Scottish government and for their far-sighted approach to industry.”