Lehman Brothers Collection - Contemporary Business Archives

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Twentieth-Century Business Archives

Met-Mex Penoles, S.A. - Lehman Brothers Collection

Met-Mex Penoles, S.A.

List of Deals

Met-Mex Peñoles was incorporated in 1969 in Mexico. In the early 1970s it was 60 percent owned by Industrias Peñoles S.A. de C.V., the Mexican mining company, and 40 percent by Bethlehem Steel, an American steel producer and metal refiner. Met-Mex Peñoles processed metal by smelting, refining, and selling nonferrous metals and their byproducts.

Before Met-Mex Peñoles was incorporated, Industrias Peñoles conducted its own metallurgical manufacturing. Industrias Peñoles created Met-Mex from its own metallurgical assets and in exchange received shares of Met-Mex stock, which was not publicly traded. Industrias Peñoles agreed to offer Bethlehem Steel 40 percent of the stock of Met-Mex in 1970. In turn, Bethlehem Steel provided a loan of $2 million to Met-Mex, and Bethlehem Steel and Industrias Peñoles guaranteed $33 million in Met-Mex debentures in 1971 and 1973. The debentures were offered as a private placement to U.S. institutional investors. The money was raised to fund construction of an electrolytic zinc refinery in Torreon, in the north-central state of Coahuila, Mexico. Additional funds were raised through commercial bank loans, supplier credits, and revolving bank credit.

The zinc factory in Torreon was designed to highly refine zinc and to produce sulphuric acid, cadmium, silver, and lead. Met-Mex Peñoles held long-term contracts to buy metal ores from various companies in the Industrias Peñoles group and from other Mexican mining companies. Sales for Met-Mex were $80.1 million in 1968, $68.1 million in 1971, and $66.8 million in 1972.

Note: The deal book contains photographs and illustrations of the Met-Mex and Industrias Peñoles plants and operations.

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