South Africa

Glencore faces flood of lawsuits

Glencore faces a raft of class-action style lawsuits from investment and pension funds in the UK, months after the mining giant pleaded guilty to market manipulation and bribery.

Mubadala Investment Company and International Petroleum Investment Company are among over a dozen funds who filed claims at a London court against Glencore and a group of its executives in recent weeks, according to court records.

While there is no public record of what the claimants allege, people familiar said it was linked to the more than $1 billion fine Glencore paid in May.

The firm admitted to bribery and market manipulation stretching over a decade, Glencore said at the time that the company had changed since the wrongdoing.

Funds linked to Phoenix Group, Standard Life and HSBC filed claims against the mining giant, while another suit named abrdn, Norges Bank and the Kuwait Investment Office as claimants.

Glencore in May pleaded guilty to a range of charges from bribery and corruption in South America and Africa, to price manipulation in US fuel-oil markets, resolving long-running investigations against the company in the US, UK and Brazil.

It agreed to pay about $1.1 billion to US and Brazilian authorities, with the total amount of the fine in the UK to be set in a sentencing hearing at the beginning of November at Southwark Crown Court.

Glencore made a $410 million provision for the UK fine in the 2021 accounts of its UK subsidiary Glencore Energy UK Ltd.

“This type of behaviour has no place in Glencore,” Glencore’s current CEO, Gary Nagle, said at the time of the settlement.

“We have taken significant action toward building and implementing a world-class ethics and compliance program to ensure that our core controls are entrenched and effective in every corner of our business.”

Aabar Investments and Reassure are also named in some of the lawsuits.

Glencore declined to comment. Lawyers from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan and Pallas Law, who represent some of the claimants, declined to comment. Lawyers from Stewarts did not immediately respond to a request for comment.