Alcan, Rio Tinto Engaged in Formal Merger Negotiations

 |  Includes: AL (defunct), RIO
by: The M & A Researcher

Countless outlets are currently reporting that Alcan (AL (defunct)) and Rio Tinto (RTP) are now engaged in formal negotiations for potential formal merger agreement between the two companies.

Alcoa has remain absolutely silent other than extending the exchange offer to August 10, 2007 and announcing additional financing for the possible transaction with Alcan.

It is bordering on ludicrous at this stage that Alcoa has not at least leaked its intent to raise the current offer price. It can only be assumed that the company is waiting for the outcome of the Rio talks in order to assess its next move. While this does make some sense, it is also a very risky strategy, given the inroads Rio Tinto has made over the last two weeks. In other words, Alcoa's lethargy could very easily result in losing Alcan to a lesser competitor, thereby creating a superior competitor via its own inability to act decisively in an obvious situation.

There is really no legitimate reason for Alcoa to remain passive. If the company intends to take advantage of this crucial point in its industry's history, it has no choice but to announce an increased offer for Alcan -- and one in which its primary rival simply can not refuse. It will be utterly shocking if Alcoa fails to do this within the next several days.

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