Glencore, BTG, Trafigura may buy control of Brazil's MMX-papers

SAO PAULO, June 25 Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:24am EDT

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SAO PAULO, June 25 (Reuters) - Commodities firm Glencore Xstrata and Dutch trading company Trafigura are talking separately with Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista about buying a controlling stake in his MMX SA mining company, local papers said on Tuesday.

On Monday, MMX said it was weighing business options that included the sale of some assets and its controlling stakeholder's shares.

Glencore and Brazilian investment bank BTG Pactual are due to meet in Switzerland on Wednesday to discuss a possible joint venture that could take a controlling stake in MMX and its Porto Sudeste port near Rio de Janeiro, the Valor Economico paper said.

The Folha de S.Paulo paper said Trafigura was also doing due diligence, with interest in bidding on MMX.

Batista, whose fortune has diminished sharply in the past years because of production and project delays, has struggled to keep his companies afloat. Investors have punished the publicly traded units of his empire, which spans shipyards, oil and gas exploration and production, electric energy generation, mining and ports.

An MMX representative said the company did not comment on market rumors. Representatives of Glencore, Trafigura and BTG were not immediately available.

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