Potash Corp. says BHP is being ‘unethical


Associated Press

TORONTO (AP) — Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. said suitor BHP Billiton is calling its customers “to sow seeds of doubt and confusion about the future” of the Canadian company.

Australia’s BHP Billiton Ltd., the world’s biggest mining company, launched a hostile $130-a-share takeover on Aug. 18 after Potash directors rejected its offer. The Canadian company said it’s in talks with several other companies instead.

Potash Corp’s sales president, Stephen Dowdle, said in a letter to customers filed with regulators this week that they recently learned that Chris Ryder, director of Potash marketing for BHP Billiton, has begun calling Potash customers. Dowdle called it “inappropriate and highly unethical.”

Potash, the world’s largest fertilizer company, has rejected BHP hostile $38.5 billion takeover offer as wholly inadequate.

Dowdle said they can only assume that BHP’s “purpose is to sow seeds of doubt and confusion about the future of PotashCorp by raising questions about our ability to do business across the nutrient spectrum as well as the future and makeup of our sales organization.”