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India's Essar expands into US with new acquisition

Essar Minerals, a subsidiary of the family-owned Essar Group, announced on Saturday it is to buy US-based Trinity Coal Partners LLC for $600 million.
 
The acquisition is part of the Indian conglomerate's plan to secure raw materials for its steel and power operations worldwide and will give it access to a further 200 million tonnes of coal in the US.
 
Second-generation CEO of the Essar Group, Prashrant Ruia, said: "Trinity Coal will be an excellent addition to our North American business, ensuring that we become an integrated player in the region. Access to Trinity's vast coal reserves and the opportunity to work with a team of skilled personnel will take us closer to our vision of becoming one of the lowest cost steel producers in the world."
 
Speculation emerged today that the Essar Group is planning an IPO, among other options, to raise up to $3 billion for further expansion and acquisitions. In response to the claims, the Group said: "Essar Group is always looking at a range of different funding options but has not yet made any specific decisions with regards to its future financing."
 
The Essar Group was founded in 1969 by brothers Shashi and Ravi Ruia, who still serve as chairman and vice chairman respectively. Today the group has revenues of $15 billion with company interests in steel, energy, power minerals, telecoms and shipping. The family still owns a majority share in all the group's subsidiary companies and the six-member board is made up entirely of first and second generation family members.

Picture: An Essar refinery in India

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