Mining and Heavy Industries

Aussie-focused Peabody beats bankruptcy

US coal miner Peabody Energy says it will focus on its Australian mines as it recovers from filing for bankruptcy last year.

Peabody last week emerged from its Chapter 11 filing and re-listed on the stock exchange in New York, under the ticker symbol BTU.

The company’s president and chief executive Glenn Kellow said the ‘new BTU’ was “well positioned” to create substantial value for shareholders over time.

“Peabody is the only global pure-play coal investment, and we have the scale, quality of assets and people, and diversity of geography and products to be highly competitive,” Kellow said.

“We also have taken significant steps to create a capital structure to succeed through all cycles.

“Our financial focus will now be on reducing debt, targeting high-return investments and returning cash to shareholders over time.”

The miner, which has thermal and metallurgical coal mines in NSW and Queensland, has reduced net debt by around US$5 billion since it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US in April last year.

Kellow said the miner also “strengthened” its Australian business.

“Coal remains an essential part of the energy mix, and Peabody is the largest U.S. coal producer while our Australian platform has access to the higher-growth Asia-Pacific region,” he said.

During its stretch of bankruptcy, Peabody closed its Burton mine in Queensland, and sold its Metropolitan mine in NSW to South32 for US$200 million.

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