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Whitehaven Coalface

The Whitehaven workforce has made a seamless transition at the company’s newly acquired Blackwater and Daunia mine sites in the Bowen Basin since Whitehaven completed its acquisition of 100% of both sites in April.

BHP and Mitsubishi Development Pty Ltd divested the Blackwater and Daunia mine sites for about $4.1 billion.

The acquisition is a significant milestone for Whitehaven that has effectively doubled the size of its business. It’s been good news for the employees at both mine sites too, with 95% of them accepting offers to join Whitehaven.

Whitehaven Coal Managing Director Paul Flynn has spent some time on site overseeing the transition and said so far, it’s been a smooth one.

“It’s been fantastic to spend some time on site welcoming the transferring workforce of more than 2,100 into our business over the last two weeks and it’s been a largely smooth transition.

“We’ve long said our people are our greatest asset at Whitehaven and, happily, we haven’t just acquired two great assets, we’ve also welcomed some incredible people to the enlarged business. We know there’s still a lot of hard work ahead, but it’s been a real team effort and there’s a positive sense of enthusiasm and excitement on site for our future together.”

Whitehaven Coalface

One of their priorities is making sure they keep up their community support, something Whitehaven has strived to do over the last 20 years in the communities where their other assets are, predominantly in northern NSW.

“This acquisition means real certainty for workers at both sites, and for the countless businesses that rely on these mines for economic security.

“We understand the importance of mining to regional areas. We have a proven track record of supporting local jobs and local businesses, as well as directly investing in important community causes and empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“This local focus is part of our DNA and Queenslanders can be confident we’ll bring that same approach with us to the Bowen Basin.

“Whether it’s investing in community partnerships, providing opportunities for local suppliers, or creating training and development pathways for the workforce, our commitment is to create and maintain a positive economic and social presence for the long-term.”

Whitehaven Coalface

The acquisition has not only doubled Whitehaven’s business, but it has also transformed the company into a leading metallurgical coal producer, repositioning its portfolio to deliver sales revenue driven by 70% metallurgical coal and about 30% thermal coal.

As part of the transition, Whitehaven held town hall sessions on site to welcome the new employees and give them the opportunity to meet the crews, answer questions and talk about what’s next for the business.

“Our immediate focus has been to ensure a smooth and safe transition of the workforce and operations. By their very nature, transactions of this scale are complex, and the health, safety and wellbeing of our people always remains our first priority,” said Paul.

In acquiring two developed sites, Paul said they see a very long future for mining.

“Our industry continues to deliver significant benefits for regional communities across the country and for our international trading partners who rely on Australia’s high-quality coal for energy generation and steel production.

Whitehaven Coalface

“The acquisition of Blackwater and Daunia will deliver Whitehaven geographic and operational diversification benefits and provides attractive growth opportunities in Queensland’s Bowen Basin, including synergies with our Winchester South development project.

“Metallurgical coal is a critical component in steelmaking, and we expect to play a leading role in helping to meet strong current and anticipated global steel demand for many years to come, particularly in high-growth market regions such as India and Southeast Asia.”

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