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Bakrie family looks to step back from Bumi

The Bakrie family, which controls the namesake Indonesian conglomerate, plans to sever ties with London-listed coal group Bumi, on the back of ongoing shareholder dispute and an investigation into financial irregularities at the Asian family business.

The Bakrie family, which controls the namesake Indonesian conglomerate, plans to sever ties with London-listed coal group Bumi, on the back of ongoing shareholder dispute and an investigation into financial irregularities at the Asian family business.

In a statement on 11 October, the Bakrie Group said it wants to acquire all of Bumi’s operating assets, swapping it for cash and the family’s 23.8% indirect stake in Bumi.

The family’s holding in Bumi, which listed in 2011, is via two units – a 29% stake in coal miner Bumi Resources and an 85% stake in Berau Coal Energy, another Indonesian mining company. In turn, Bumi also holds a stake of around 30% in Bumi Resources.

The Bakries said in the release that the family wants to buy back 10.3% of Bumi’s holding in the Indonesian unit, with the rest to be bought by the end of this year.

No financial details have been disclosed, with Bumi adding that the group’s board are considering the family’s proposal. Following the news, shares at Bumi jumped by almost 30%.

The move comes on the back of an announcement that Bumi Resources has been involved in financial irregularities. Bumi, which is also partly owned by Nat Rothschild, said on 27 September that it would launch an investigation into the allegations at the Jakarta-based company.

The family has also previously made headlines when Rothschild called for a “radical cleaning up” of corporate governance at the coal miner. In response, the Bakries moved to oust Rothschild from the board of Bumi Resources – he is currently a non-independent director.

Bakrie Group, founded in 1942 by Achmad Bakrie, operates across agriculture, mining and shipping.

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