Brazil’s Vale mulls fertilizer acquisitions-report

* Vale to consider opportunities that make sense- director

* Bidding for Potash would have been “big step”

* Could seek partnerships with other fertilizer companies

BRASILIA, Aug 28 (BestGrowthStock) – Brazilian mining giant Vale
(VALA5.SA: ) (VALE.N: ), which has sought to raise its presence in
the fertilizer sector in recent months, could be seeking
further acquisitions, a local newspaper said on Saturday.

The company is expected to boost its budget and could seek
acquisitions as part of its ambitious plans for the fertilizer
sector, the report in O Estado de S. Paulo said.

“There are companies, in this consolidation process, that
start getting small if they don’t join others,” said Mario
Barbosa, Vale’s executive director for fertilizers, according
to the newspaper. “We will always look at opportunities that
come up and make sense.”

The comments come only days after Vale denied market talk
it was planning a bid for Canada’s Potash Corp (POT.TO: )
(POT.N: ), as Potash seeks to fend off a $39 billion takeover
offer from Australia’s BHP Billiton (BLT.L: ) (BHP.AX: )

Potash is the world’s largest fertilizer supplier and Vale
is one of two companies considered big enough to mount a rival
bid on its own.

Analysts have consistently expressed doubt Vale would jump
into the bidding for Potash, citing heavy political pressure to
invest in Brazil and its existing $10 billion portfolio of
fertilizer investments.

Barbosa said it would have been “a very big step” for Vale
to have gotten involved with the Potash bid at the moment.

Another way to grow in the sector was through partnerships
with other fertilizer companies, he added.

Vale, the world’s largest producer of iron ore, has
expanded its fertilizer business in recent months. The formerly
state-run company was privatized in 1997.

In January, it agreed to pay $3.8 billion to buy the
fertilizer assets in Brazil of U.S.-based Bunge Ltd (BG.N: ). It
plans to boost production at its Bayovar phosphate mine in Peru
by nearly 50 percent over the next 18 months.

(Reporting by Ana Nicolaci da Costa; Editing by Eric Walsh)

Brazil’s Vale mulls fertilizer acquisitions-report