Alteo, the world number one in specialty alumina acquired by a Guinean company
On an Alteo site in France (illustrative image).
AFP - BORIS HORVAT
Text by: RFI Follow
It is a rare enough fact to be underlined, a Guinean company will acquire a French company.
And not just any, it is Alteo, the world number one in specialty alumina.
Alteo, a company based in the Marseille region, has been in receivership for a year, and the commercial court of this city has just entrusted the United Mining Supply (UMS) group with the Alteo case.
UMS is headed by Guinean-Lebanese businessman Fadi Wazni, who is also Chairman of the Board of Directors of Société minière de Boké, Guinea's largest bauxite exporter.
And from bauxite to alumina, there is only one step, or rather one step of transformation.
For Fadi Wazni, who became the leading national bauxite exporter under the Alpha Condé regime, thanks to the Boké mining company, there is above all a logical continuity and a quest for added value.
Alteo, which has a turnover of 230 million euros, indeed produces specialty alumina, an extremely pure form, used in microelectronics, for
, or in the automotive sector.
Quest for a buyer
In debt and in difficulty, the
was looking for a buyer.
Fadi Wazni will buy back part of the debt, the exact amount is still unknown, and reorient the production process.
There is no longer any question of importing pure bauxite into France, but only alumina which will then be refined on site.
98 jobs out of the 500 should disappear in the process.
The advantage of this reorientation will be to stop the storage or discharge of bauxite residues considered to be very polluting.
French environmentalists who demanded an end to pollution did not triumph, however.
For them, Fadi Wazni only shifts the problem to African soil.
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