Rio Tinto Chairman Paul Skinner informed the company's shareholders, that board has unanimously rejected BHP Billiton’s offer. The statement was delivered through a letter posted on the Australian Securities Exchange. The Board maintained its stand that the BHP offer undervalued Rio Tinto. Contradicting BHP’s estimates, Skinner added that Rio Tinto was growing and that it had the ability to capture growing demand in developing economies such as China and India.
Skinner also highlighted that accruing to the Dual Listed Company structure of Rio Tinto (Rio Tinto plc and Rio Tinto Limited), any company intending to take control must make an offer to shareholders of both companies.
The letter also emphasised the UK Takeover Panel rule, that BHP Billiton must declare its intentions by February 6, 2008, and that if it announces to not make any offer to Rio Tinto, then it must withhold statements of a possibility of taking over, for a six-month period from that date.