RICHMOND, Va., Nov. 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Massey Energy Company (NYSE: MEE) today announced that it has entered into an agreement with Essar Mineral Resources Ltd., a member of Essar Group of India, to jointly evaluate and develop select business opportunities on a project-by-project basis. The initial focus of the new partnership will be the development of coal reserves, coke ovens and a coal preparation plant to support an electric power plant to be constructed in India by Essar. In the non-binding memorandum of understanding signed by both companies, Massey and Essar also agreed to evaluate selected mining projects in India and to evaluate the development of coke oven projects in India and elsewhere. The strategic partnership is not limited to India or to coal, and the companies agreed to establish a joint venture to pursue any future projects selected for development. The Essar Group has diverse assets in the manufacturing and service sectors, including steel, energy, power, communications and construction. Among its recent global acquisitions are Minnesota Steel, where it is moving forward with plans for a $1.6 billion steel mill, as well as Ontario-based Algoma Steel. "The potential for synergies between the two companies is readily apparent," said Don L. Blankenship, Massey's Chairman and CEO. "Essar is looking to dramatically increase its steel production and energy generation in the coming years. Massey has some of the best metallurgical and steam coal reserves in North America and the expertise to develop modern, cost effective coal mining and processing operations overseas to fuel the expansion. We have been developing a relationship with Essar for some time and are optimistic about the potential to work and grow profitably together." The agreement provides opportunity for Massey to significantly expand its global reach and provides an established partner in India, where demand for coal and steel has grown dramatically. "Our companies have the technical expertise and marketplace knowledge that will allow us to expand and leverage mutual opportunities in India and around the world," said J. Mehra, CEO & Director of Essar Steel Holdings Limited. "Essar Minerals looks forward to a successful and long-term partnership with Massey Energy." Company Descriptions Massey Energy Company, headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, with operations in West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia, is the fourth largest coal company in the United States based on produced coal revenue. Essar Mineral Resources, Ltd. is a part of Essar Global Limited, a diversified group straddling the manufacturing and service sectors of Steel, Energy, Power, Communications, Shipping & Logistics, and Construction. Essar Global has an asset base of USD 10 billion (INR 400 billion) and employs 20,000 people worldwide. With a firm foothold in India, Essar Global is focused on global expansion with projects and investments in Canada, USA, Africa, the Middle East, the Caribbean and South East Asia. FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: The foregoing release contains forward- looking statements. Such forward-looking statements reflect current analysis of existing information. Caution must be exercised in relying on forward- looking statements. Additional information concerning factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements can be found in press releases as well as Massey's public periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Massey's Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequently filed interim reports. Such filings are available either publicly or upon request from Massey's Investor Relations Department: (866) 814-6512. Massey disclaims any intent or obligation to update its forward-looking statements. For further information, please visit the Company's website at http://www.masseyenergyco.com.
SOURCE Massey Energy Company