Kenmare Expects to Take Market Share From Rio Tinto, CFO Says

Kenmare Resources Plc (KMR), a producer of titanium minerals in Mozambique, plans to take market share from competitors including Rio Tinto Group after extending an expansion plan.

“We are looking at a further expansion because we have a huge resource and we can mine it at a low cost,” Finance Director Tony McCluskey said in a July 5 telephone interview. “All of the large players have run down their existing mines. They aren’t in a position to increase their mining.”

Kenmare, which operates Mozambique’s Moma mine, intends to increase its capacity to produce the titanium mineral ilmenite to 2 million metric tons a year by 2016 from 800,000 tons. The Dublin-based company said in 2010 it targeted 1.2 million tons by 2013. Titanium dioxide pigment is used in paints, paper and plastics production, according to the company.

Kenmare has jumped 77 percent in London trading this year, valuing the company at 1.39 billion pounds ($2.2 billion). The stock fell 0.9 percent to 58 pence at the 4:30 p.m. close today.

The company, which mines 7 percent of the world’s ilmenite, will be able to produce “somewhere in the mid-teens” by 2016, subject to feasibility studies, McCluskey said. London-based Rio Tinto discovered Mozambique’s Mutamba titanium deposit in 2008.

To contact the reporter on this story: Colm Heatley in Belfast at cheatley@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Colin Keatinge at ckeatinge@bloomberg.net

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