Impala Platinum (Implats) didn’t secure total support for its bond buyback offer, which was intended to keep debt off its balance sheet in a weak and volatile market. Implats, the world number two platinum miner, is moving to shut unprofitable underground mining areas and replace them as quickly as possible with production from its two new shafts.Against the backdrop of a capital programme that extends to 2020 when the company will reach targeted output of 800,000oz of platinum, the board was clear it did not want to add about R4.7bn of debt to its balance sheet to redeem the 2018 bond programme in February 2018. Implats offered a nil-premium cash offer for the $200m convertible bond and R2.67bn convertible bond due in 2018. When the offer expired on Thursday, holders of $170m and R2.43bn had accepted the offer, lifting the acceptance rate to more than 85% and allowing Implats to extend the offer to other bondholders and wrap up the programme. Implats will pay for the offer by issui...

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