Anglo American PLC
Anglo American is one of the world’s largest mining companies, with operations in some 45 countries. The company had its origins in the gold and diamond mines of apartheid South Africa, and after the Second World War it expanded and diversified to the point that it controlled large portions of that country’s economy. It later sold off its non-mining businesses, moved its headquarters to London, and spun off its gold mining operations into the company now called AngloGold Ashanti. Anglo American remains a major player in platinum, copper, coal and diamonds (through its affiliate De Beers). It has been embroiled in environmental and human rights controversies in a variety of countries. In June 2009 Anglo rebuffed a proposal from rival mining group Xstrata that the two join in a merger of equals.