Barrick-Newmont make merger headway but divide remains -sources

Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:26pm EDT
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By Euan Rocha, Nicole Mordant and Soyoung Kim

April 23 (Reuters) - The disagreements around the spin-out of certain assets that had snagged merger talks between Barrick Gold Corp and its rival, Newmont Mining Corp, have been resolved but talks are at a standstill for now, said three sources familiar with the matter on Wednesday.

There have been some talks between representatives of both companies since discussions broke down last Thursday, but high-level talks between executives from both sides have yet to resume, said the sources, who asked not to be named due to the sensitive nature of the discussions.

The merger talks between the two gold mining giants around a deal hit a snag last week, but sources had told Reuters at the time that the two sides remained keen to reach a deal and that talks were likely to resume.

Barrick and Newmont declined to comment on the talks.

Two sources said on Wednesday that some of the disagreement now lies around the power-sharing structure at the board level within a new combined entity.

One of those sources said the two companies have agreed to a 14-member board for the new entity, with seven nominees from the Barrick's board, five from Newmont's side and two new nominees.

However, certain specifics around the new board members and disagreements around who gains control of the key corporate governance committee are a potential sticking point at this stage, said the two sources.   Continued...