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Vale S.A. Value Stock - Dividend - Research Selection



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Description of the company





We are one of the largest metals and mining companies in the world, based on market capitalization. We are the world's largest producer of iron ore and iron ore pellets and the world's largest producer of nickel. We also produce manganese ore, ferroalloys, metallurgical and thermal coal, copper, platinum group metals ("PGMs"), gold, silver, cobalt, potash, phosphates and other fertilizer nutrients. We are engaged in greenfield mineral exploration in six countries around the globe. We operate large logistics systems in Brazil and other regions of the world, including railroads, maritime terminals and ports, which are integrated with our mining operations. In addition, we have a portfolio of maritime freight assets, floating transfer stations and distribution centers to support the distribution of iron ore worldwide. Directly and through affiliates and joint ventures, we also have investments in energy and steel businesses.


Business strategy


Our mission is to transform natural resources into prosperity and sustainable development. Our vision is to be the number one global natural resources company in creating long-term value through excellence and passion for people and the planet. We are committed to investing mainly in world-class assets, with long life, low cost, potential to expand and high quality output, capable of creating value through different economic cycles. A lean management organization, with teamwork and accountability, excellence in project execution and firm commitment to transparency and shareholder value creation, are principles of paramount importance that guide us towards the achievement of our goals. Health and safety, investment in human capital, a positive work environment and sustainability are also critical to our long-term competitiveness.


We aim to maintain our competitive position in the global iron ore market and to grow through world-class assets while exercising disciplined capital management and maintaining a low cost structure. Iron ore and nickel will continue to be our main businesses while we work to maximize the value of our copper, coal and fertilizer nutrients businesses. To enhance our competitiveness, we will continue to improve our railroads and our global distribution network. We seek opportunities to make strategic partnerships focusing on disciplined capital management. We have also suspended operations of assets in response to market conditions, and disposed of assets that we have determined to be non-strategic or in order to optimize the structure of our business portfolio. The divestiture of assets improves capital allocation and unlocks funds to finance the execution of top priority projects. The preservation of our credit ratings is one of our basic commitments. Below are the highlights of our major business strategies.


Maintaining our competitiveness in the global iron ore market


We are committed to maintaining our competitiveness in the global iron ore market, by focusing our product line to capture industry trends, improving quality and productivity, controlling costs, strengthening our logistics infrastructure of railroads, ports, shipping and distribution centers, and strengthening relationships with customers. Our diversified portfolio of high quality products, strong technical marketing strategy, efficient logistics and long-standing relationships with major customers will help us achieve this goal.


Enhancing our logistics capacity to support our iron ore and coal businesses


We believe that the quality of our railway assets, our extensive experience as a railroad and port operator, and our stakes in MRS and VLI position us as a leader in the logistics business in Brazil. We have been expanding the capacity of our railroads and ports primarily to meet the needs of our iron ore business.

We continue to satisfy our transportation needs through a fleet of capesize vessels and very large ore carriers of 400,000 deadweight tons ("DWT"), primarily used to transport iron ore from Brazil to Asia, which is owned partly by us and partly by ship owners with which we have contracts of affreightment. To support our commercial strategy for our iron ore business, we operate two distribution centers in Malaysia and Oman, and two floating transfer stations ("FTS") in the Philippines.


In order to position ourselves for the future expansion of our coal production in Mozambique and leverage our presence in Africa, we are currently ramping up the expansion of the local railroad capacity by rehabilitating the existing network and building new railroad tracks to develop the logistics corridor from our mine to the newly constructed port at Nacala-à-Velha, in Mozambique.


Maximizing value in the nickel and copper businesses


We are the world's largest nickel producer, with large-scale, long-life and low-cost operations, a substantial resource base, diversified mining operations producing nickel from nickel sulfides and laterites and advanced technology. We have refineries in North America, Europe and Asia, which produce an array of products for use in most nickel applications. We are a leading producer of high-quality nickel products for non-stainless steel applications, such as plating, alloy steels, high nickel alloys and batteries, which represented 58% of our refined nickel sales in 2015. Our long-term goal is to strengthen our competitiveness in the nickel business. We continue to optimize our operations and to review our asset utilization aiming to increase productivity and improve returns.


We produce copper concentrates from our Sossego and Salobo facilities located in the Carajás region. These copper mines benefit from our infrastructure facilities serving the Northern System. The gold we produce at Sossego and Salobo increases the total aggregated value of those operations. Our strategy for our copper assets in the Carajás region is to develop new mines in order to maintain supply for our existing processing facilities. We also have copper operations at Lubambe, in Zambia, through a joint venture. Copper is recovered as a co-product from our nickel operations, principally at Sudbury and Voisey's Bay, in Canada.


Optimizing the coal business


We have coal operations in Moatize (Mozambique) and Australia, and we hold a minority interest in a joint venture in China. We intend to continue pursuing organic growth in the coal business mainly through the expansion of the Moatize operations in Mozambique, where we have entered into a strategic partnership with Mitsui.


Maintaining growth options in fertilizer nutrients business


We have potash and phosphate rock operations as well as potential investments in greenfield and brownfield projects that we believe will allow us to benefit from certain demographic trends: the growing world population, an increase in per capita income in emerging economies and higher global consumption of proteins. We also take advantage of our strategic position to provide goods to the fertilizer-driven agricultural expansion in Brazil.


Developing our resource base


We are taking advantage of our global presence to develop mineral exploration initiatives. We conduct brownfield exploration to maximize results from existing mining areas and to support both projects and operations. We conduct our greenfield exploration activities in six countries, which are Brazil, Peru, Chile, Canada, Australia and Indonesia. In particular, we seek to identify opportunities and develop deposits with the potential for large scale production at low cost. Our exploration activities include iron ore, nickel, copper, coal, potash and phosphates.


Optimizing our energy matrix


As a large consumer of electricity, we have invested in power generation projects to support our operations and to reduce our exposure to the volatility of energy prices and regulatory uncertainties. Accordingly, we have developed hydroelectric power generation plants in Brazil, Canada and Indonesia, and we currently generate 51% of our worldwide electricity needs from our own plants. We are seeking to develop a clean energy mix by investing to develop low carbon energy sources such as biofuels and focusing on reducing our carbon footprint.


Integrating sustainability into our business


We are committed to sustainability, as we cannot grow without taking into account the physical limits of our planet or the well-being of communities in which we operate. Since 2013, we have incorporated environmental and social actions directly into our strategic planning, moving away from a stand-alone investment model. We practice sustainable mining by dedicating resources to education and researching the application of technologies to use natural resources efficiently. We are also committed to reducing the consumption of water in our activities and to use it more efficiently, especially through reuse and recirculation of water. We actively support an open dialogue with our main stakeholders (governments, communities, customers, suppliers, employees and others), because we recognize that only by acting together we can achieve sustainable growth and contribute to social welfare. We follow standards for social action and principles on business and human rights, which are based on the guidelines of the United Nations Human Rights Council. We are also committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

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