Deals in brief
Shanta to acquire Barrick’s gold projects in Kenya
East African mining firm Shanta Gold has signed a definitive agreement to buy 100% of the shares of Barrick Gold’s subsidiary Acacia Exploration Kenya (AEKL).
The shares will be acquired from two of Barrick’s subsidiaries.
AEKL has a 100% participating interest in Afriore-held licences, including an existing high-grade resource in south-western Kenya.
The project is estimated to hold 1.18 million ounces (Moz) of gold grading 12.6 grams per tonne (g/t).
Valued at a total purchase price of $14.5m, the deal gives Shanta its first asset outside Tanzania.
Shanta will pay $7m in cash for the assets and $7.5m in shares, and a 2% net smelter return (NSR) will be with Barrick over the life of mine.
Shanta Gold CEO Eric Zurrin said: “The West Kenya acquisition is significant for Shanta Gold, creating an East African gold mining champion with realisable growth prospects and high asset quality across three attractive gold projects.
“One of Shanta’s competitive advantages is being able to operate long-hole open stoping operations more efficiently than its peers, which lends itself well to the advancement of the West Kenya Project.”
The West Kenya project covers an area of 1,161km², within the Lake Victorian gold field in north-west Tanzania and south-west Kenya. It consists of a total of seven prospecting licences (PL) issued in 2019.
PL 222, PL 223, PL 225 and PL 226 are 100% beneficially owned by Barrick while PL 210, PL 211 and PL 212 are 87.16% beneficially owned by Barrick.
The remaining 12.84% owned by Canadian exploration company Advance Gold on behalf of Gold Rim Exploration Kenya.
It hosts several Global Tier 1 assets, including the North Mara and Geita gold mines.
With the acquisition of the West Kenya project, Shanta will have a major presence in the greenstone gold region.
The project will also expand Shanta’s operating presence in East Africa and increase Shanta’s high-quality gold resource inventory to more than 3Moz of gold.
In July 2019, Shanta Gold brought its Ilunga underground mine at the New Luika Gold project in south-western Tanzania into commercial production.
China’s Ganfeng to increase stake in Argentina lithium project
Lithium Americas has signed definitive agreements with Chinese firm Ganfeng Lithium with respect to their joint venture (JV) company Minera Exar, the holding company for the Caucharí-Olaroz lithium brine project in Jujuy, Argentina.
Mitsubishi to acquire 30% stake in Chile’s Mantoverde copper mine
Japan-based Mitsubishi Materials Corporation (MMC) has signed an agreement to acquire a 30% interest in Mantos Copper’s Mantoverde copper mine and associated projects in Chile for $263m from Mantos Copper.
India’s JSW Steel secures fourth iron ore mine in Odisha
JSW Steel has reportedly secured a fourth iron ore mine in the auctions held by the Indian state of Odisha.
The development follows after the company expressed interest in acquiring more iron ore mines during the upcoming auctions in Odisha. Out of the 18 mines under auction, five are of JSW Steel’s interest.
Premier acquires additional interest in Namibian manganese miner
Premier African Minerals has agreed to acquire an additional 2% stake in MN Holdings (MNH), the owner of the Otjozondu manganese mining project in Namibia.
MNH is the owner and operator of the Otjozondu mine, which is 450km east of Walvis Bay, a port town on the coast of Namibia.
ECR Minerals sells SLM gold project in Argentina to Hanaq
Mineral exploration and development firm ECR Minerals has sold its Argentine subsidiary and SLM gold project owner Ochre Mining to Chinese-owned company Hanaq Argentina.
The SLM gold project area is located in La Rioja Province, Argentina. It is approximately 800km north-west of Buenos Aires and 450km north-east of Santiago, Chile.
Empress Resources and Alto Ventures sign LoI for business combination
Empress Resources and Alto Ventures have signed a non-binding letter agreement (LoI) for a proposed business combination.
Under the terms of the transaction, Alto will acquire all the issued and outstanding common shares of Empress on the basis of one common share of Alto for each common share of Empress.