Coalfield Resources buys back 75pc stake in Harworth Estates in £150m deal

Coalfield Resources is to buyback a 75 per cent share of property firm Harworth Estates for £150m.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 3rd March 2015, 5:15 pm
Jonson Cox, chairman of Coalfield Resources
Jonson Cox, chairman of Coalfield Resources

The deal will see the business, formerly known as UK Coal, reconsolidate its holdings in Harworth Estates, having previously transferred the stake to the Pension Protection Fund (PPF).

In December 2012, Coalfield Resources underwent a complex restructure that disposed of its mining operations and offloaded its £550m pension scheme deficit to the PPF. The PPF took a 75.1 per cent holding in Harworth Estates as part of this.

Harworth Estates is a property and regeneration company which brings brownfield sites back into use across the North of England and the Midlands.

The firm, which is valued at £298.5m, owns or manages around 27,000 acres across about 200 sites, including the Waverley Advanced Manufacturing Park in Sheffield and the former Prince of Wales Colliery in Pontefract. It currently has 45 per cent of its land by value in Yorkshire.

The buyback price of £150m represents a discount of around 20 per cent on the value of the business. Investec is advising on the placing of £115m shares as part of the buyback. The shares, priced at 7.25p, offer a 19.5 per cent discount on the pricing of the enlarged company.

Coalfield Resources will rename as Harworth Group following completion of the acquisition.

Jonson Cox, chairman of Coalfield Resources, told The Yorkshire Post the business has “always been keen to reconsolidate” the assets from its “attractive” property company.

He said: “It’s a great story of a transformation from being in a declining and troubled business, to being a successful, listed, very straightforward company with a specialist skill in managing brownfield regeneration.”

He added: “We’re about delivering - year in, year out - as a business bringing derelict industrial land back into use for homes and houses, employment generation and renewable energy development. That’s what we’ll continue doing.”