BHP Billiton has proposed to name its demerged company as South32, which will hold its non-core assets worth about $15bn.

The company plans to bring its aluminium, nickel, silver and coal divisions into a separate entity to improve the operations of individual units, Reuters reported.

According to BHP, South32’s majority of selected assets are located in the southern hemisphere with its two regional centres Australia and South Africa said to be linked by the thirty-second parallel south line of latitude.

South32 CEO elect Graham Kerr said: "The naming of South32 is a major step in the set-up of our company.

"While South32 is grounded in the southern hemisphere, we will retain our global reach and ambition as we seek to exceed the expectations of a global shareholder base."

"While South32 is grounded in the southern hemisphere, we will retain our global reach and ambition as we seek to exceed the expectations of a global shareholder base. The diversity of our employees, commodities, customers and communities will give the new company great strength, which is represented by the woven pattern of our logo.

BHP Billiton has considered a wide range of options while selecting a name for South32, including suggestions from employees across the company.

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"As we continue to build South32 we are keen to ensure the views of our people are woven through the foundations of the company," Kerr added.

"I am proud to say that a suggestion from one of the new company’s employees was the basis for the name we have selected as our identity."

The demerger is expected to be completed in the first half of the 2015 calendar year.

The head office for South32 will be in Perth, Australia, and its regional head office and global shared services centre will be in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Upon receiving all necessary third party approvals, BHP plans to make a final board decision on the proposed demerger.

Energy