Mumbai: Aditya Birla Group is in talks to extend the closure of its planned acquisition of US aluminium products maker Aleris Corp. by three months due to delays in securing regulatory approvals, two people close to the development said.
In July 2018, Aditya Birla Group company Hindalco announced the $2.6 billion purchase of Aleris, with an outside date to complete the deal by 21 January, 2020. Though China has already cleared the deal, authorities in the US and the European Union (EU) are still vetting the deal, and it is unlikely that it will close by its original deadline, the people cited earlier said on condition of anonymity. Aleris has 13 facilities across North America, Europe and China.
Aleris has long-term supply contracts with plane makers Boeing, Airbus and Bombardier, besides several carmakers. The acquisition will give Hindalco access to the aluminium supply market for the building and construction segments.
A Moody’s note dated 13 January sounded pessimistic that the deal will close by the original date. “The EU has advised it needs additional time to review the proposed buyer and this is not expected to be completed by the 21 January 2020 outside date in the merger agreement. Novelis is in discussions regarding the extension of this date," it added.
An Aditya Birla Group spokesperson said, “Novelis remains fully committed to completing the Aleris acquisition and continues to work with all relevant parties to do so as quickly as possible."
On 1 October, the European Commission cleared the deal, provided Aleris sells its Belgium plant making aluminium for the auto and specialties markets. In September, the US department of justice filed a civil antitrust lawsuit seeking to block the acquisition.