Rumors Fly About Alpha Natural Takeover

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Alpha Natural Resources, which is in the midst of acquiring rival Massey Energy for $7.1 billion, is itself the subject of takeover rumors. On Thursday, the trading blog Benzinga reported that a foreign company may be interested in acquiring Virginia-based Alpha Natural.

The post did not specifically mention what firm(s) may be considering a move on Alpha Natural (ANR). Alpha Natural had a market value of almost $7.2 billion as of the close on Thursday and assuming a 20% premium were to be offered, any potential buyer would have to offer close to $9 billion to make what would be viewed as a reasonable bid.

Benzinga reported that the unnamed international buyer would offer $75-$80 a share for Alpha Natural. The company has 120.48 million shares outstanding, according to data on Yahoo Finance. Benzinga also reported that an Alpha Natural spokesperson did not comment on the rumors.

The spokesperson did say the company is busy wrapping up its acquisition of Massey (MEE), which it hopes to finalize later this year, and that the company probably would not pursue large-scale acquisitions of its own until a ''few years out,'' Benzinga reported.