UPDATE 2-Vale prepares joint bid with Apollo for Anglo's Brazil fertiliser business -sources
(Adds reference to Norway's Yara in penultimate paragraph)
By Freya Berry and Anjuli Davies
LONDON, April 12 (Reuters) - Brazilian miner Vale is teaming up with U.S. private equity firm Apollo to bid for Anglo American's niobium and phosphates business in Brazil, three sources familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.
A sale of the assets, used for making fertilizers, could fetch around $1 billion for Anglo American.
The London-listed miner has said it wants to raise as much as $4 billion from divestitures, in order to cut net debt to under $10 billion by the end of the year as it grapples with a commodity price slump.
A spokesman for Anglo said the sale process is progressing as planned. Vale declined to comment, while Apollo did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Two separate sources said that The Mosaic Company, the world's largest phosphate and potash supplier, could also be interested in the sale process, with binding bids expected in a few weeks.
Mosaic declined to comment.
Vale is the biggest producer of phosphate in Brazil, which in turn is the planet's fifth-biggest user of fertilizer, according to its website. It owns potash mine Taquari-Vassouras, while Anglo's assets include Ouvidor, Brazil's second-largest producer of phosphate rock. Continuación...