|This article is part of the CoalSwarm coverage of Coal barons|
Nathaniel Rothschild is the only son of British financier Jacob Rothschild. He is former co-president of New York-based hedge-fund firm Atticus Capital, and ranks seventh in the 2010 Sunday Times list of the 25 wealthiest U.K.-based hedge-fund managers, based on an annual estimate of net worth known as the “Rich List” - he has an estimated fortune of 330 million pounds.
Rothschild founded the investment company Vallar, which raised 707 million pounds ($1.1 billion) in an initial public offering in London in July 2010. In November 2010, Vallar combined with 25 percent of Indonesian coal producer PT Bumi Resources and 75 percent of PT Berau Coal Energy. Rothschild said the $3 billion takeover will make Vallar the biggest exporter of coal to China.
"Mr Rothschild is Co-Chairman of Bumi plc, a leading natural resources group with the largest coal-producing assets in Indonesia. Bumi is listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange. He is a non-executive director of Genel Energy plc, the largest oil producer in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and among the top two independent London-listed E&P companies. He is also a non-executive director of Barrick Gold Corporation, the world's largest gold company. Mr Rothschild is a member of the Belfer Center's International Council at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He holds an MA in History from Oxford University." 
Indonesia Vallar deal
In November 2010, Vallar PLC said it had agreed to buy 25% of Indonesia company PT Bumi Resources Tbk and 75% of Indonesia's PT Berau Coal Energy Tbk for $3 billion and new Vallar shares. Vallar plans to finalize the listing of the company on the London Stock Exchange under the name of Bumi PLC by April 2011. Bumi's and Berau's forecasted coal production in 2010 is 78 million metric tons of coal and together they own more than 12 billion tons of coal resources. The two companies are expected to produce 140 million tons of coal annually by 2013, according to Vallar. 90% of the new company will be coal-based, but through Bumi's base-metals subsidiary, PT Bumi Resources Minerals Tbk, Vallar will also have exposure to copper, gold, iron ore, lead, molybdenum and zinc, in Indonesia and Africa.
PT Bakrie & Brothers and other Bakrie affiliates said they have entered into an agreement with Vallar to swap around 5.2 billion shares of Bumi at 2,500 Indonesian rupiah (28 cents) each for around 90.1 million shares in Bumi PLC. The Bakrie Group will be the largest combined shareholder in Vallar with 43% of Vallar shares and will have the right to nominate three directors including the chairman, chief executive officer and the chief financial officer and will continue to control the management of Bumi. Bakrie & Bros' interests include coal mines, telecommunications and property. The company is linked to the family of former Indonesian minister Aburizal Bakrie.
Big coal dreams
“There’s no global coal company today. There’s not a Barrick Gold in coal. That’s where the opportunity is," he told Bloomberg. "Indonesia is a sleeping giant. One scratches one’s head to think why isn’t there a mining champion out there already and hopefully we are in the process of showcasing one in the years ahead.," he said.
Articles and resources
- Jesse Riseborough and Simon Casey, "Rothschild’s Vallar Seeks Iron Ore, Coal Acquisitions" Bloomberg, July 9, 2010.
- Jesse Riseborough and Simon Casey, "Rothschild Plays Strongest Suit in $3 Billion Deal for Global Coal Company" Bloomberg, December 1, 2010.
- Bumi Board, organizational web page, accessed April 21, 2012.
- Alex MacDonald And Linda Silaen, "Vallar Invests $3 Billion in Indonesian Coal Firms" Wall Street Journal, Nov. 16, 2010.