Shareholders of copper mining firm Kazakhmys have voted in favour of selling its stake in Eurasian Natural Resources for several billion dollars, paving the way for ENRC's founders to delist the company.

The buyout is worth $4.6bn (£3.0bn, €3.5bn), as more than 90% of the shareholders voted to back the deal, in favour of the group's founders' bid.

The founders, Alexander Machkevitch, Patokh Chodiev, Alijan Ibragimov and the Kazakh government, were planning to delist the company due to its poor performance.

Kazakhmys, which holds 26% of ENRC, was trading 1.62% lower at 1330 BST in London.

The founder group earlier offered about $1.6bn in cash to the ENRC shareholders.

The shareholders include Kazakhmys and other minority investors, while the Kazakhstan government holds a 27% stake.

Kazakhyms, which offered its 26% stake for the bid, said that it "will accept the ENRC takeover offer or vote in favour of the ENRC takeover scheme."

Delisting ENRC

If the stake sale is completed the founder group will have enough shares to delist ENRC with or without the support of other minority shareholders in the company.

The founder group together owns 54% of ENRC's share and requires a minimum of 75% to delist the company. ENRC's minority shareholders comprise about 18% of the company's total stakes.

The buyout would end six years of corruption probes against ENRC, which began with its listing on the London Stock Exchange in 2007.

The company has lost about 65% of its market value during this period, and its commodity prices have been falling rapidly.

According to several public statements, Kazakhyms has been looking to exit from its ENRC investment.

Last month Kazakhmys' board reportedly suggested its investors vote in favour of the deal.

Kzakhymys has written off 35% of the value of its investment from ENRC after the company posted unsteady growth for more than five years.