IAMGOLD to start keeping its spare cash in gold bullion

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By Nic Hopkins
The Times, London
Thursday, January 10, 2002

AngloGold, the world's largest gold miner, has confirmed it
is seeking to forge stronger ties with Barrick, the Canadian
gold mining group, in a move that may pave the way to a
multibillion-dollar merger.

AngloGold is battling Newmont, of the United States, to win
Normandy Mining, Australia's largest goldmining group, in a
A$4.3 billion (L1.6 billion) bidding war. Its offer is due to
expire tomorrow night. Last month it announced plans for a
tie-up with Barrick, involving Barrick and Normandy's assets
in Australia and Tanzania, that would take effect should it
win the bidding war.

The proposed alliance enabled AngloGold to revise its bid for
Normandy and stay in the bid race with Newmont, which has
tabled a richer cash and shares offer.

But Jonathan Best, AngloGold's finance director, said
yesterday that Barrick and AngloGold were moving closer,
regardless of the outcome of the battle for Normandy.

"We've been talking to Barrick for a while now and actively
looking for ways to work together," Mr. Best said. "If we lose
Normandy, that will not be the end of the road with Barrick."

Mr. Best added: "As far as I know there are no plans for a
merger with Barrick at the moment. But if there is to be
consolidation in the industry, you are not going to do it by
mopping up the little guys. The big guns have to come
together."

Consolidation is rampant in the gold sector. Barrick,
the world's second biggest gold miner, recently completed
a $2.3 billion (L1.6 billion) takeover of Homestake, also of
North America. Newmont, meanwhile, is seeking a three-way
merger with Normandy and Canada's Franco-Nevada.

AngloGold crept back into contention for Normandy yesterday,
with its cash and shares bid coming within a few cents of
Newmont's cash and scrip offer. If it sees a rush of
acceptances late on Friday, AngloGold may extend its bid.