(EnergyAsia, May 14 2012, Monday) — Australia’s Whitehaven Coal has offered to acquire the remaining 82.7% of coal explorer Coalworks that it does not own for A$1 per share, valuing the company at A$172 million. (US$1=A$0.99).

The offer represented a 16.96% premium to Coalworks shares’ price of A$0.855 on the ASX when it was announced.

Whitehaven is on an acquisition trail having already bought two coal companies earlier this year to emerge as Australia’s largest independent coal miner.

The New South Wales-based company, which is developing its coal reserves in the Gunnedah Basin, the Hunter Valley and Queensland, produces semi- soft coking and PCI coal for export, and thermal coal for both export and domestic markets. Earlier this month, Whitehaven merged with Aston and acquired Boardwalk, boosting its market capitalisation to A$4.6 billion.