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League One. Tykač heads to the world's top three in metallurgical coal

Forbes, November 27, 2023                            Link to the original article

Pavel Tykač doesn't invest much in the Czech Republic anymore, but it's much different in the world. The investment vehicle bringing together the foreign investments of the fourth-richest Czech, Sev.en Global Investments (Sev.en GI), has made several acquisitions this year alone and, according to its CEO Alan Svoboda, will soon add more.

Most recently, Sev.en GI signed an agreement to take a 51% stake in Coronado Global Resources, which mines metallurgical coal in Australia and the United States. That deal catapulted Tykač into the top five global players in steelmaking coal, alongside names like BHP and Rio Tinto.

"We have ambitions to move into the world's top three in metallurgical coal," Sev.en Global Investments chief executive Alan Svoboda tells Forbes.

Alan Svoboda

In an interview that will be published in Forbes in the coming weeks, Alan Svoboda says that Coronado's reach in North America and Australia may provide a suitable platform for further expansion in the coal segment, which is mainly used for steel production.

"The total equity value of our portfolio before Coronado was around $2.5 billion. With Coronado, we will already be over 3.5 billion. And we still have two transactions in the pipeline that I believe will work out that should put us close to $4.5 billion. So it will be a significant jump again," Svoboda calculates.

Sev.en Global Investments is one of the strongest legs of Pavel Tykač's business and increasingly overshadows his Czech operations, where he owns the Chvaletice and Počerady power plants, the heating plants in Kladno and Zlín, and the coal mines in the Most region.

In recent years, Sev.en GI has invested in US mining companies BlackHawk Mining and Golden Eagle Land Company, and has purchased mining rights to more than two billion tonnes of US coal reserves.

In Australia, it bought a power plant with a mine from Delta Electricity and this May bought the mining rights to coal there from Coca-Cola. But in Australia, Sev.en GI also took a sidestep when it bought the bankrupt Salt Lake Potash, which owns a potash deposit in the west of the country used as a premium fertiliser, last year.

"We took the risk of buying the company out of bankruptcy, investing in it what it needed and now we're in the waiting phase to see how everything will play out," Svoboda says of the move.

And, he adds, the deal confirms that Sev.en GI is no longer just interested in coal and power plants, but is looking at other industries.