"The European Commission scuttled Gencor's plans to merge Implats with Lonrho's platinum interests (LPD) on anti-competition grounds. The only other competitor in South Africa, the EC reasoned, would have been Amplats (the platinum interests of Anglo American Corp.), and Russia was the only other external supplier. Gencor already owned a 27 percent share in the Lonrho operations Western Platinum and Eastern Platinum.
"Steel and ferroalloys contributed most (31.7 percent) to revenues in 1996; aluminum accounted for the next largest share (27 percent). Other operations each contributed less than a tenth of total revenues. Approximately half the company's revenues came from abroad.
"In 1997, Gencor's base metals and non-gold interests were split off as a separate company, Billiton, to be based in London. Alusaf, titanium producer Richards Bay Minerals, and the steel and ferroalloys division remained part of Billiton after the transition. The company had a market capitalization of £4.6 billion (US$7.7 billion). The new Gencor would henceforth specialize in precious metals.
"A US$194 million sale of mines and exploration rights to Eldorado Gold Corporation, based in Canada, was canceled in the summer of 1997. An unstable gold market was cited as the cause. The company continued to stake out investments in Australia, Indonesia, and Vietnam.