By Jesse Riseborough and Zijing Wu – Jul 9, 2010
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Vallar Plc, Nathaniel Rothschild’s investment vehicle, raised 707.2 million pounds ($1.07 billion) in an initial public offering in London to fund a mining acquisition, beating a target announced last month.

Vallar placed 68.7 million ordinary shares at 1,000 pence apiece, the company said in a statement. So-called conditional dealing will begin today and unconditional dealing on July 14 on the London Stock Exchange, it said. Jersey, U.K.-incorporated Vallar had sought to raise 600 million pounds, it said June 25.

Rothschild, former co-president of New York-based hedge- fund firm Atticus Capital LLC and the only son of British financier Lord Jacob Rothschild, is tapping investors to help fund an acquisition of a mining business or operation. Vallar’s offering came after at least 50 companies postponed or shelved IPO plans worldwide since April amid the European debt crisis.

“The prices of public and private market mining assets are certainly cheaper than they were three months ago,” analysts from Liberum Capital Ltd. in London said in a note to clients today. Vallar plans to buy a mining asset with an enterprise value of between 2 billion and 5 billion pounds, Liberum said.

Shares in the company fell 0.4 percent to 996 pence in conditional dealing at 9:13 a.m. London time.

The Vallar team is led by Rothschild and James Campbell, a former Anglo American Plc coal and base-metals chief. Investment will focus on metals, coal and iron ore in the Americas, Russia, eastern Europe and Australia, Vallar said last month.

‘Compelling Fundamentals’

“The long-term fundamentals of the commodities sector are compelling and Vallar will be able to react more quickly than our competitors when targets become available,” Campbell said in today’s statement.

Credit Suisse Group AG coordinated the sale with joint bookrunner JPMorgan Cazenove Ltd. Evolution Securities Ltd. and Liberum Capital Ltd. are co-managers for the IPO.

Rothschild, the youngest of four children of Jacob Rothschild, ranks seventh in the Sunday Times list of the 25 wealthiest U.K.-based hedge-fund managers in an annual estimate of net worth known as the “Rich List.” He has an estimated fortune of 330 million pounds, according to the list published in April.