Jan. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Ivanhoe Mines Ltd., developing the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia with Rio Tinto Group, denied a Dow Jones news service report that Chairman Robert Friedland has put his stake in Ivanhoe up for sale.
The news service reported today on the Wall Street Journal Web site that Friedland is trying to sell his 23 percent stake in Ivanhoe, citing people familiar with the deal it didn't identify.
"This story is false," Friedland said today in a statement.
Ivanhoe said last week it hired Citigroup Inc. to evaluate strategic options for the company including debt and equity offerings and asset sales. Ivanhoe spent more than six years negotiating an agreement with the Mongolian government on Oyu Tolgoi, which Rio has described as the world’s largest untapped copper and gold resource.
"The story speaks for itself," Rob Thibault, a Dow Jones spokesman in Princeton, New Jersey, said in a telephone interview. Dow Jones and the Wall Street Journal are both owned by New York-based News Corp.
Ivanhoe Mines fell 61 cents, or 3.5 percent, to C$17.03 at 4:10 p.m. in Toronto Stock Exchange trading. The shares increased more than fourfold last year.