It's a pretty canny/underhand move (depending on which side you're on) coming so late in the day. And the Qataris have made absolutely sure that the deal is frozen without their consent, increasing their stake in Xstrata to 12% from the 3% owned when acquisition negotiations began.
Rather than panic, however, Glasenberg has taken a more nonchalant stance: 'It is not a must-do deal,' he says. 'It is not as if it is a deal we are going to lose, or that is running away from us.' And indeed, with his commodities giant owning a 34% stake in Xstrata, it's not as if anyone else can make a play for the thing.
Will the Qataris up the ante? Or will they swoon and fall into his arms? MT will fill you in on the next chapter as the story progresses.