Mining-mill.com recently identified Top 5 of the biggest Australian mining companies. Here, in NO-particular order, 5 biggest Australian mining companies, taken from Forbes’ Global 2000 list of the 2017 world’s biggest public companies and Price Waterhouse Cooper mine 2017 report. Some listed companies below also include in Top 25 biggest mining companies in the world.
Rio Tinto is the first among Top 25 biggest mining companies. An Australian-British multinational and one of the world’s largest metals and mining company. Rio Tinto has reported $33.9bn sales in 2017 as well as $4.7bn profits. The London-based company operates through five product groups – aluminium, copper, diamonds and minerals, energy and iron ore. The aluminium product group consists of alumina, bauxite and primary aluminum production. The copper product group of course mainly focus in copper, with valuable by products of gold, molybdenum, silver and nickel production. The diamonds and minerals product group operates in mining, refining and marketing sectors. The energy product group includes thermal coal, coking coal and uranium. The company has a 51,000-strong workforce in around 35 countries.
Coupled with Rio Tinto we have BHP Billiton. BHP Billiton also at the second in Top 25 biggest mining companies. Operates under a dual listed company structure with two parent companies – BHP Billiton Ltd and BHP Billiton Plc. Has reported $34bn sales in 2017 with $2.4bn profits. It is among the world’s top producers of major commodities, including iron ore, metallurgical coal, copper and uranium. In May 2017 with much of the former Billiton assets having been disposed of, BHP Billiton began to rebrand itself as BHP, at first in Australia and then globally. BHP carries out a range of mining, processing, and oil and gas production operations across more than 25 nations. The Melbourne-headquartered company had a workforce of approximately 65,000 as of 30 June 2016.
South32 is a mining and metals company headquartered in Perth, Western Australia. The company formerly was part of BHP Billiton until 25 May 2015 decide to move out independently. This Australian mining company is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange with secondary listings on the Johannesburg bourse and the London market. The company is producer of alumina, aluminium, manganese, silver, zinc, lead, nickel, coking coal and thermal coal. South32 has operations in Australia, South Africa, Mozambique and Colombia, and has a minority partnership (36%) in an alumina refinery in Brazil. With diversified portfolio, they made equally $6bn of sales and $747m profits in 2017.
Newcrest Mining Limited is an Australian-based company. Engages in the exploration, development, mining and sale of gold and gold-copper concentrate. It is Australia’s leading gold mining company. Its operations have expanded beyond Australia, for example Indonesia, thus becoming a prominent international mining company. Newcrest’s primary gold and copper production in Australia is at Ridgeway (Cadia Valley Operations), the second Australian operation being the Telfer Mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Newcrest also operates two mines in Papua New Guinea, Lihir and Hidden Valley, and one each in Ivory Coast (Bonikro) and Indonesia (Gosowong). They equally set $3.6bn sales and $439m profits back in 2017, big enough to include Newcrest mining to the Top 5 biggest Australian mining companies.
Fortescue Metals Group Ltd is an Australian iron ore mining company. According to PwC mine 2017 report, Fortescue include the Top 5 biggest Australian mining companies. The giants Fortescue is the fourth largest Iron ore producer in the world as of March 2011. The company has holdings of more than 87,000 km² in the Pilbara region of Western Australia making it the largest tenement holder in the state, in fact larger than both BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto. Currently plans to develop a third, Western Hub are currently in developmental stage. Record revenue in 2013 with $8.12bn.
Honorable mention: Roy Hill
Roy Hill is an iron ore mining project in the Chichester Range in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, located 115 kilometres (71 mi) north of Newman and 277 kilometres (172 mi) south of Port Hedland. With indicated and inferred reserves of more than 2.4 billion tonnes, it is set to become one of the largest mining projects in Australia. This is the reason why we put Roy Hill as honorable mention of Top 5 biggest Australian mining companies. Mining operations will produce 55 million tones of iron ore per annum with an operating life of more than 20 years.
Gina Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting is the majority stakeholder in the project with a 70% interest. The remaining 30% stake is held by a consortium comprising POSCO (12.5%), Marubeni (15%), and China Steel Corporation (2.5%) as well. As part of the ownership agreement the various consortium partners have also secured their proportionate share of iron ore production from the Roy Hill Project, representing a combined 16.5Mtpa of iron ore at full production in summary.