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Goldcorp extends Osisko bid to March in wake of lawsuit

An Osisko Mining facility.

Handout/Osisko Mining

Goldcorp Inc. was forced to extend its hostile offer for Osisko Mining Corp. until March, after a lawsuit against the company bungled its plans to take control of the smaller miner this month.

The nearly three week extension will give Montreal-based Osisko more time to find another option to Goldcorp's stock and cash offer of $5.95 per share.

Osisko has sued Goldcorp for allegedly misusing confidential information that Osisko provided when the companies were discussing a friendly transaction.

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Vancouver-based Goldcorp has extended its bid to March 10 from Feb. 19 and said it will not pay for any Osisko shares until a Quebec court rules on the merits of Osisko's litigation.

The Quebec Superior Court has set a hearing for March 3 to 5.

It will be difficult for Osisko to find another company to top Goldcorp's bid with the gold industry suffering from the slump in bullion prices.

The companies signed their first confidentiality agreement in 2008 after Goldcorp gave Osisko an infusion of cash to help the miner build its giant Canadian Malartic gold mine in Quebec.

Over the course of five years, Goldcorp has made three merger offers to Osisko's management, which were all rejected as too low.

Osisko's shares are trading at $6.55, above the Goldcorp offer.

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