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Continental Ore Corporation

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Continental Ore Corporation (COC) was originally known as S.A. des Minerais, and was started in the 1930s in Luxembourg, as a privately held trading group. The U.S. office was opened in New York in 1938 as Continental Ore Corporation (COC). Over time, it became one of the most highly respected international marketing companies in the field of industrial raw materials, with more than 30 offices throughout the world.

In the 1950s, COC’s management conceived, initiated, and developed the U.S. barter program, whereby surplus U.S. agricultural commodities (wheat, corn, butter, erc.) held by the U.S. government, were used to barter against strategic raw materials (Ferro Alloys, metals, minerals, etc.) produced abroad, for the U.S. government Strategic Stockpile.

COC supplied Tungsten ore to the U.S. Strategic Stockpile, and served on the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Tungsten Industry Advisory Committee. COC also was the exclusive agents of Korea Tungsten Mining Co., and Tungsteno de Baviacora of Mexico, for their productions of Tungsten ore.

COC was instrumental in the development of the Mexican and Canadian Sulphur industries, providing the initial marketing structures, and long-term marketing agreements.

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Borax S.A., COC’s Swiss affiliate, marketed raw materials to the metallurgical industries (Iron ore, Carbon products), as well as to the chemical and glass industries (Boron products). Borax S.A. was sold to Borax Europe (part of Rio Tinto Zinc – RTZ), in 2001.

In the late 1950’s, COC began an active trade in Petroleum Coke, and eventually became the largest Petroleum Coke marketing company on a world-wide basis. This business was later sold to AIMCOR (Applied Industrial Materials Corp.), a private U.S. company. Also in this time period COC’s European offices were the general agents of the Brazillian Iron ore producer, Companhia Vale do Rio Doce, (S.A.CVRD), and subsequently organized the European sales office for CVRD.

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In the late 1950s a joint venture with Greek partners resulted in the formation of Sulphur Hellas S.A., which involved the development of the Greek port of Soussaki where a Sulphur-grinding installation was erected to supply agricultural customers in Greece and neighboring countries in the Mediterranean area. This has since expanded to become a major port facility including warchousing and fertilizer-blending and bagging operations. The Greek partners purchased our shareholding in this facility, in 2000.

In 1962 COC negotiated a contract between South Africa and Japan for the supply of 500,000 tons per year of Pig Iron from South Africa to Japan. In 1963 COC sold its Fertilizer Division -International Ore & Fertilizer Corporation – to Occidental Petroleum. Also around this time, COC arranged for the sale of 3 to 4 million tons a year of Angolan Iron ore for Japan. COC served as the exclusive sales agents for the major South African Ferro Alloy producer, SAMANCOR, and for the French Ferro Alloy producer, SFPO (now known as Eramet). Also in the 1960s, COC concluded a contract with Highveld Iron and Steel of South Africa for 2 million pounds annually of Vanadium Pentoxide for the U.S., and another 2 million pounds annually, for Europe.

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COC developed a market for all U.S. producers of Ferro Phosphorus (TVA, Occidental, Monsanto, Stauffer/Rhone-Poulenc, FMC), and later became the exlusive sales agents for the Kazakhstan Ferro Phosphorus producers, as well.

COC was acquired and merged with International Minerals & Chemicals (IMC) in 1968. IMC (now the Mosaic Corporation) at the time the world’s leading independent producer of fertilizers, purchased COC for The purpose of broadening their international presence, as well as diversifying into some of the industrial raw material areas of expertise of COC. In late 1973, three members of the former top management team of COC decided that significant areas of international marketing and trading operations could be more productively developed in a private, entrepreneurial environment, rather than in the structured confines of a large public U.S. company whose main activities were related to mining and production. As a result, Continental Resources Inc. (CRI) was formed in early 1974, when sevral of IMC’s marketing and trading operations were re-purchased from IMC.

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Zircon Sand from producers in Australia, South Africa, and the U.S. was sold to consumers in Europe, primarily for use in ceramics, Mineralite Mica, another commodity marketed by CRI, is shipped to consumers throughout Europe for use in paints, adhesives, and a new Chinese customer uses the Mica in electronic circuitry.

The company name, Continental Ore Corporation (COC) has been re-acquired strictly for the purpose of serving as a consulting company, COC has been active in consulting with the Kazakh Sulphur industry as well as the Chinese fertilizer industry andother projects around the world.
As au result of the group’s professional expertise, international contacts, combined with an unchallenged reputation extending for more than half a century, the COC/CRI group has been successful in developing commercial strategies, innovative transaction sturctures and challenging joint ventures.

February 1, 2008.
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