The AIM and TSX listed gold producer has acquired the new permits - Cape Mount, Cape Mount West and Cape Mount East – from vendor Sarama Investments, which will receive 6.6mln Aureus shares as part of the deal.
It’s a move which boosts the land Aureus owns in and around its Bea Mountain licence by 20% to 1,683 sq km (from 1,402 sq km) and ties in with Aureus' strategy of building a long term and sustainable gold district in Liberia.
The three patches cover a 15km long mineralised corridor, where Sarama has spent US$1.8m on exploration and encountered gold mineralisation.
So far 5.6mln shares have been issued to Sarama, with the remaining set to be handed over after taxclearance.
Aureus also said today it had granted incentive stock options to certain directors and employees, including chief executive David Reading, on January 4th – with close to 12mln shares (2.18% of the company) handed out at a price of 0.05p per share.
At New Liberty, the firm brought its mine onstream late last year against the backdrop of Ebola and also teething problems with equipment.
It's set to produce 120,000 ounces of gold annually for at least eight years at peak production.
Broker SP Angel noted that the closeness of the New Liberty mine and process plant should lower the threshold for exploration success in the newly acquired licence areas.
This is because any discoveries will not need to be of a scale to support a new processing plant provided they are able to cover ore transport costs to New Liberty.
Shares eased 5.88% to 6p each.