Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Cradle Arc PLC https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Cradle Arc PLC RSS feed en Tue, 25 Jun 2019 17:37:49 +0100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc in talks for Leboam funds after court places project under judicial management ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211569/cradle-arc-in-talks-for-leboam-funds-after-court-places-project-under-judicial-management-211569.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) said the Botswana High Court has placed its subsidiary Leboam Holdings under judicial management following a loan dispute.

Cradle Arc owns a 60% stake in Leboam, the holding company of the Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

John Hinchcliffe, a chartered accountant in Botswana, has been appointed as provisional judicial manager to secure and preserve the assets of Leboam and prevent the mismanagement of the project. He will also be responsible for ensuring Leboam is able to meet its obligations and do everything necessary to protect the interests of the members and creditors of the firm. Hinchcliffe will need to file a report on the financial position of Leboam to a meeting of creditors before the High Court by no later than February 18.  

Following the meeting, Leboam will have until February 21 to submit an affidavit or business plan.

READ: Cradle Arc plays for time at Mowana as it seeks a sustainable funding solution

The news follows an impasse in loan negotiations between Fujax Minerals and secured lenders of Leboam.

Fujax and Leboam's 40% shareholder had made an application to the Botswana High Court for Leboam to be placed under judicial management or alternatively, to place it under provisional liquidation.

Cradle Arc had separately applied to put Leboam into provisional liquidation. It was opposing the application for judicial management on the basis that Fujax has neither provided a viable alternative financing plan for Leboam, nor a credible business plan for the Mowana mine.

Cradle Arc in talks with potential funders

The company has now started talks with existing and potential funders to secure the financing needed for Leboam.

Chief executive Kevin van Wouw said Cradle Arc will co-operate with the provisional judicial manager in order to seek the best financing and operational plan for Leboam to resolve the group’s financial difficulties.  

"Following from the impasse between Fujax and the Secured Lenders to the project, where the working capital facility agreed was not completed and which has directly led to this situation, we have commenced discussions with various existing and potential funders in order to attempt to secure a suitable financing solution for the project going forward.

"The company has made significant investment in this project, and as such we will continue to preserve the value where possible by following these processes to their conclusion."

 Cradle Arc said there can be no guarantee that the company will be able to secure the necessary financing in order to support a credible business plan to the Botswana High Court by February 21.

Cradle Arc confident it can secure funds needed to avoid insolvency

The group also needs to raise funds to finance its corporate overheads and general administration costs, as well as to maintain and develop other assets. 

While it is confident it will be able to raise the funds needed, Cradle Arc said it would be highly likely that it would become insolvent if unsuccessful.

Meanwhile, the HMRC is currently looking into the company’s VAT receivables of £546,406 for last year. Cradle Arc is optimistic that repayment of VAT to the company will become due in the “near term”. 

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Thu, 20 Dec 2018 11:06:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211569/cradle-arc-in-talks-for-leboam-funds-after-court-places-project-under-judicial-management-211569.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc plays for time at Mowana as it seeks a sustainable funding solution ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211378/cradle-arc-plays-for-time-at-mowana-as-it-seeks-a-sustainable-funding-solution-211378.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) has applied to put its subsidiary Leboam Holdings into provisional liquidation.

Cradle Arc has a 60% stake in Leboam, which is the holding company of the Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

READ: Cradle Arc suspended as loan deal falls through

The decision follows the announcement earlier this month of an impasse in loan negotiations between Fujax Minerals and Leboam.

Cradle Arc has been notified that Fujax and Leboam's 40% shareholder have made a separate application to the Botswana High Court, to be heard today (18 December), for Leboam to be placed under judicial management or alternatively, to place it under provisional liquidation.

Cradle Arc’s application is to be heard tomorrow (19 December).

Cradle Arc is opposing the application for judicial management on the basis that Fujax has neither provided a viable alternative financing plan for Leboam, nor a credible business plan for the Mowana mine.

Cradle Arc said that although operations at the mine have been suspended, significant remedial action has been performed on the process plant, the water provision from its well-field and various other infrastructural elements of the mine. Rental agreements for mining equipment have been cancelled, and equipment removed from the site pending settlement of outstanding and overdue creditor balances.

"While it is unfortunate that we have had to take this step, provisional liquidation as opposed to final liquidation is by no means the end for Mowana, but rather provides the company with an opportunity to continue talks, along with the provisional liquidator, for a sustainable funding solution at the mine,” said Kevin van Wouw, the chief executive officer of Cradle Arc.

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Tue, 18 Dec 2018 07:46:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/211378/cradle-arc-plays-for-time-at-mowana-as-it-seeks-a-sustainable-funding-solution-211378.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc suspended as loan deal falls through ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210753/cradle-arc-suspended-as-loan-deal-falls-through-210753.html Botswana-based copper miner Cradle Arc PLC’s (LON:CRA) future was placed in severe doubt last night after a proposed US$4mln loan fell through.

Mining at the Mowana site has been suspended with trading in the junior’s shares also halted.

READ: Cradle Arc ticks up as it hails “vote of confidence” in Mowana project with working capital extension

Fujax Minerals provided US$1mln of the loan but wanted security over Mowana for all of its loans before it would provide the remainder.

Other secured lenders with a charge over the mine were not willing to agree to this, said Cradle Arc.

The board is seeking insolvency advice, said the statement.

 

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Fri, 07 Dec 2018 07:57:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/210753/cradle-arc-suspended-as-loan-deal-falls-through-210753.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc ticks up as it hails “vote of confidence” in Mowana project with working capital extension ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/209440/cradle-arc-ticks-up-as-it-hails-vote-of-confidence-in-mowana-project-with-working-capital-extension-209440.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) shares ticked up in early trading Monday after it hailed a “vote of confidence” in its Mowana copper mine in Botswana following an extension to its working capital facility for the project.

The firm said its 60% owned subsidiary, Leboam Holdings, had secured a US$4mln extension from Fujax Minerals and Energy Limited, an Africa-focused raw materials supplier, which would be used for general working capital at the project.

READ: Cradle Arc jumps as it obtains loan facility to improve processing facilities at Mowana project

It follows news in October that the company had secured a US$2mln loan from its largest shareholder to create an inventory of spare parts and improve and rehabilitate the processing facilities at Mowana.

Kevin van Wouw, chief executive of Cradle Arc, said that the extension was “a vote of confidence in the Mowana operations” and ensured that the company had “sufficient headroom and contingency” as it sought to recommence its production ramp-up.

Cradle also updated on the performance of the project in the fourth quarter.

Mowana had produced 140 tonnes of contained copper (Cu) in October compared to the original forecast of 392 tonnes, mainly due to intermittent equipment breakdowns at its processing plant which had impeded production.

However, Cradle added that following a series of repairs stable production was expected for the remainder of the quarter, with final concentrate grades achieved in the period to date above forecast levels.

A mill reline, planned for the last week of November, was also expected to see throughput at the mill increase to 155 tonnes per hour.

Recent testing on the main ore body in the north pit had also confirmed around 2mln tonnes of ore that is currently accessible, with metallurgical flotation test work (a method of extracting minerals from ores) returning copper recoveries of over 76%.

Van Wouw said that key improvement and rehabilitation works at the processing plant had largely been completed, saying the group expected “steady improvement in performance of the project over the coming months”.

Shares were up 1.2% at 0.8p.

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Mon, 19 Nov 2018 08:16:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/209440/cradle-arc-ticks-up-as-it-hails-vote-of-confidence-in-mowana-project-with-working-capital-extension-209440.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc raises £396,000 via placing to help complete improvement of processing facilities at the Mowana mine ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/208199/cradle-arc-raises-396000-via-placing-to-help-complete-improvement-of-processing-facilities-at-the-mowana-mine-208199.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) has raised £396,000, before expenses, via a conditional placing to help complete the rehabilitation and improvement of the current processing facilities at the Mowana copper mine in Botswana

The African-focused base and precious metals exploration and production company said the placing of 44,000,000 new ordinary shares at a price of 0.90p each was made with certain new and existing shareholders.

READ: Cradle Arc jumps as it obtains loan facility to improve processing facilities at Mowana project

The group said the net proceeds of the placing will be used alongside the funding from the US$2.0mln loan facility provided to Leboam Holdings (Pty) Limited, the company's 60% owned subsidiary, by PenMin Botswana Proprietary Limited that was completed on 19 October 2018.

Cardle Arc said the rehabilitation and improvement of the Mowana copper mine are designed to address the intermittent breakdowns and interruptions that were the key reason for the company's inability to meet its production targets during Q3 2018.

Kevin van Wouw, Cradle Arc’s CEO, commented: “We are delighted to have completed this fundraise; we are busy applying the funds from the loan facility to improve the process plant to complement the hard work that has gone into the rehabilitation of the pit.

“We look forward to updating the market on our progress in the near future.”

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Wed, 31 Oct 2018 07:43:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/208199/cradle-arc-raises-396000-via-placing-to-help-complete-improvement-of-processing-facilities-at-the-mowana-mine-208199.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc renews licence on ground south of Mowana that could contain 50mln tonnes of ore ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/207057/cradle-arc-renews-licence-on-ground-south-of-mowana-that-could-contain-50mln-tonnes-of-ore-207057.html The mining licence in Botswana held by Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) over 28.5 square kilometres of ground including the Thakadu open pit and Makala underground deposit has now been extended by the Ministry of Mineral Resources until 2020.

This licence is 70km south-east of the Cradle Arc’s flagship Mowana copper mine.

WATCH: Cradle Arc PLC renews two prospecting licences 'with significant potential'

Thakadu was mined by its previous owners, with ore delivered to the Mowana processing plant, up to June 2015. The project has a JORC-compliant indicated mineral resource of 2.3mln tonnes at 1.11% copper and 11 grams per tonne silver, and an inferred resource of 5.4mln tonnes at 0.63% copper and 9 grams silver.

The combined deposits have the potential to contain a resource of over 50mln tonnes.

"We have always believed that the Makala and Thakadu deposits present a great opportunity for Cradle Arc,” said chief executive Kevin van Wouw.

“Thakadu ores were mined and transported to our Mowana copper mine by its previous owners as recently as 2015, so we have significant existing knowledge of the potential quality of the copper sulphide ore which also has significant silver credits.”

 

 

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Mon, 15 Oct 2018 08:25:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/207057/cradle-arc-renews-licence-on-ground-south-of-mowana-that-could-contain-50mln-tonnes-of-ore-207057.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc jumps as it obtains loan facility to improve processing facilities at Mowana project ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/206604/cradle-arc-jumps-as-it-obtains-loan-facility-to-improve-processing-facilities-at-mowana-project-206604.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) shares jumped in late-afternoon trading Monday after it secured a loan facility to improve processing facilities at its Mowana copper project in Botswana.

The miner said it had obtained a loan of US$2mln from its largest shareholder, PenMin Botswana Proprietary Limited controlled indirectly by Cradle’s chief executive Kevin van Wouw, to create an inventory of spare parts and improve and rehabilitate the processing facilities at Mowana.

READ: Cradle Arc looking at financing options to improve processing facilities at Mowana

Specific areas to be addressed include pumping, piping, conveying and process control remediation and installation of standby equipment in parallel in areas where a breakdown has an immediate impact on production.

The project has recently suffered from a series of breakdowns and interruptions at the processing plant in the third quarter that had “adversely affected” the company’s production in the period.

The improvement work would begin immediately and was not expected to materially interrupt production, with van Wouw saying the work would allow the group to achieve a “significant improvement” in throughput and recovery in the fourth quarter relative to the third.

In the third quarter, total production was reported at 712 tonnes of contained copper, 29.5% higher than the second quarter.

Shares were up 4.1% at 1.2p.

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Mon, 08 Oct 2018 15:14:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/206604/cradle-arc-jumps-as-it-obtains-loan-facility-to-improve-processing-facilities-at-mowana-project-206604.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc looking at financing options to improve processing facilities at Mowana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/205956/cradle-arc-looking-at-financing-options-to-improve-processing-facilities-at-mowana-205956.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) is confident it is putting the issues at its Mowana mine behind it, with the company reportedly making “good progress” at the Botswanan copper project.

Shares jumped 8.5% early on Friday morning to 1.79p.

Mowana has been beset by teething problems since it was brought back into production in April, but investors have been assured that these issues are being actively addressed. Cradle is now looking at its financing options which would allow it to improve and rehabilitate the current processing facilities and establish an inventory of spare parts.

IN-DEPTH: Cradle Arc eyeing production expansion after ramp-up completes at Mowana

It hopes this will prevent any further plant breakdowns which have occasionally disrupted production so far.

The company said it is still anticipating a pick-up in production in the final quarter of the year, although guidance is under review because of the past issues.

“During this reporting period, the company has undertaken a number of important and necessary activities to ensure that the company is best positioned to deliver on its strategy of future growth,” said chief executive Kevin van Wouw.

“Following the enlarged group's admission to trading on AIM, an in-depth review of all mining activities was implemented leading to a revised mine and accelerated development plan with a strategic objective to progress to a higher grade and increased levels of production.”

He added: “In spite of continued sporadic interruptions being experienced at the processing plant, we have made good progress with our open-pit mining activities with a large amount of waste stripping completed and are focussed on getting Mowana on a sound and sustainable footing.”

During the first half, a JORC mineral resource estimate for Mowana was revised up 37%, now comprising a measured and indicated resource of 55mln tonnes at 1.17% copper for 640,000 tonnes of contained copper.

Revenue increased to £1.49mln in the six months ended June 30 (H1 17: £0.28mln), while pre-tax losses widened to £5.49mln (H1 17: loss of £0.73mln).

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Fri, 28 Sep 2018 09:00:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/205956/cradle-arc-looking-at-financing-options-to-improve-processing-facilities-at-mowana-205956.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc’s van Wouw sees decades of production ahead despite teething troubles at start-up ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/205605/cradle-arcs-van-wouw-sees-decades-of-production-ahead-despite-teething-troubles-at-start-up-205605.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) has now exposed approximately two million tonnes of accessible transitional and supergene ore at Mowana North pit and North Rim Extension of the Mowana copper project in Botswana.

Such material is anticipated to deliver improved recoveries at a reduced production cost over the remainder of the year and into 2019.

WATCH: Cradle Arc PLC renews two prospecting licenses 'with significant potential'

Meanwhile, there have been further processing interruptions due to intermittent equipment breakdowns and, most recently, a delay in the delivery of a new part for the primary crusher hydraulic power pack at the plant.

As a result, Cradle Arc now expects total third quarter production to be approximately 10% to 20% lower than its previous forecast.

Actual production of contained copper totalled 292 tonnes and 242 tonnes for July 2018 and August 2018 respectively.

Although the interruptions to processing operations have led to inefficiencies with respect to recovery rates, in light of the work completed on the open pit and the expectation of improved material throughput and recoveries going forward, the company is confident of an improvement in performance in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Review

The overall target of 4,000 tonnes for the second half of 2018 is, however, currently under review.

On a longer-term view, Cradle Arc continues to seek financing for its proposed Dense Media Separation upgrade project, but in light of the continued processing plant interruptions, the immediate focus will be on securing the requisite funding to improve and rehabilitate the current processing facilities.

"In spite of the continued sporadic interruptions being experienced at the Mowana processing plant, we have made good progress with our open-pit mining activities with a large amount of waste stripping completed in order to lay the groundwork for a strong period of ore delivery going forward,” said chief executive Kevin van Wouw.

"Whilst production during the third quarter has been disappointing and our overall production guidance for the second half of 2018 is under review, we are working hard to get Mowana on a sound and sustainable footing for what could potentially be decades of production, given the recent renewal of our permits along strike to the north of the open pit."

 

 

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Tue, 25 Sep 2018 07:37:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/205605/cradle-arcs-van-wouw-sees-decades-of-production-ahead-despite-teething-troubles-at-start-up-205605.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Cradle Arc PLC renews two prospecting licences 'with significant potential' ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/10556/cradle-arc-plc-renews-two-prospecting-licences-with-significant-potential--10556.html Fri, 21 Sep 2018 10:57:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/10556/cradle-arc-plc-renews-two-prospecting-licences-with-significant-potential--10556.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc renews prospecting rights north of Mowana deposit ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/204895/cradle-arc-renews-prospecting-rights-north-of-mowana-deposit-204895.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) has renewed prospecting licenses for an area north of its Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

The AIM-listed metals miner said the two renewals had been granted by the Botswana Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources for a period of two years, with a proposed work plan to conduct further geophysics to extend the resource through the northernmost permit area with a maiden drilling programme to prove mineralisation in the known structure.

READ: Cradle Arc signs joint venture deal with Indiana Resources to advance Kossanto West

Cradle said there was potential to increase the combined strike length to 36km from the current 5km within the Mowana license area, which hosts a measured and indicated resource of 55mln tonnes at 1.17% copper (Cu) for 640,000 tonnes of contained copper and Inferred resource of 20mln tonnes at 1.08% Cu for 220,000 tonnes of contained copper.

The firm added that to date, the northernmost drill holes in the license have returned high-grade intercepts, with Hole MWN007 returning 50 meters at 2.11% TCu from 667m depth, and Hole MWN025 returning 19.28m at 2.94% TCu from 272.38m.

Kevin van Wouw, chief executive of Cradle Arc, said that historical data had shown the shear zone passed through both of the renewed permit areas and that the likelihood of mineralisation was “very high”.

He added that there was “significant potential” for future underground workings and a substantial mine life for the Mowana project.

In late-morning trading Friday, shares were steady at 3.8p.

-- Adds share price --

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Fri, 14 Sep 2018 07:29:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/204895/cradle-arc-renews-prospecting-rights-north-of-mowana-deposit-204895.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc signs joint venture deal with Indiana Resources to advance Kossanto West ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/204492/cradle-arc-signs-joint-venture-deal-with-indiana-resources-to-advance-kossanto-west-204492.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) has entered into a joint venture with Mukuyu Resources (Mali) LTD for the exploration and development of Cradle Arc's 137 square kilometre Kossanto West gold project in western Mali.

Mukuyu is a wholly owned subsidiary of Indiana Resources Limited (ASX:IDA).

WATCH: Cradle Arc PLC get ting to grips with issues at Mowana

Indiana will fund all costs up to and including the completion of a pre-feasibility study on the project.

On completion of a pre-feasibility study, Indiana Resources will hold a 65% participating interest and Cradle Arc will retain a 35% participating interest.

The initial work programme will include further geological mapping of Kossanto West, with potential follow up pitting and trenching activities and reconnaissance drilling.

"This agreement enables Cradle Arc to advance its highly prospective West African gold assets, whilst maintaining its primary strategic focus on the development of the Mowana copper mine,” said Kevin van Wouw, chief executive of Cradle Arc.

"The terms of the JV do not require Cradle Arc to fund exploration activities up to the PFS stage, such that accordingly there will be minimal impact on the company's balance sheet as we continue to focus on our core asset in Botswana.

"We are delighted to be working with Indiana Resources through their subsidiary, Mukuyu. Indiana Resources has a high-quality team in place and a complementary portfolio of assets in Mali."

 

 

 

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Mon, 10 Sep 2018 07:33:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/204492/cradle-arc-signs-joint-venture-deal-with-indiana-resources-to-advance-kossanto-west-204492.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Cradle Arc PLC getting to grips with issues at Mowana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/10285/cradle-arc-plc-getting-to-grips-with-issues-at-mowana-10285.html Thu, 30 Aug 2018 16:02:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/10285/cradle-arc-plc-getting-to-grips-with-issues-at-mowana-10285.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc cuts 2018 production guidance from Mowana Copper Mine after some operational setbacks ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/203769/cradle-arc-cuts-2018-production-guidance-from-mowana-copper-mine-after-some-operational-setbacks-203769.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) has cut its 2018 production guidance for its 60%-owned Mowana Copper Mine in Botswana after some operational setbacks during the third-quarter, but expects to ramp-up to full steady state production during the fourth quarter.

The African-focused base and precious metals exploration and production company also announced the proposed appointment of Roy Pitchford, as its non-executive chairman, and Michael Golding, as an additional non-executive director.

READ: Cradle Arc exits non-core project in Burkina Faso

It noted that Toby Howell, Cradle Arc's current chairman, has advised the company of his intention “to resign from his position to pursue his other business interests at the appropriate time.”

Kevin van Wouw, CEO of Cradle Arc, commented: "We are very happy to be securing the considerable mining experience of both Roy and Michael, in their respective future roles as Non-Executive Chairman and Non-Executive Director.

“The depth and range of experience brought into the company will bring new understanding of the challenges being experienced as Cradle Arc matures into an established copper producer."

Adverse impacts on drilling operations

In its operational update, Cradle Arc pointed out that In July 2018, drilling operations were adversely impacted for approximately three weeks due to breakdowns and the under-performance of a drilling contractor.

As a result, the lower volume of available ores being delivered to the processing plant, alongside the previously reported sporadic interruptions to processing due to plant outages, resulted in 45,224 tonnes of ore being milled in July 2018, leading to a lower than forecast 292 tonnes of contained copper being produced for the month.

It added that, in mid-August 2018, further intermittent breakdowns have been experienced, which also resulted in further considerable periods of processing downtime.

As a consequence of the further breakdowns experienced and the inherent inefficiencies of such sporadic stoppages at the processing plant, Cradle Arc said the total contained copper production for August 2018 is expected to be broadly in-line with the output achieved for July 2018 and therefore significantly below the company's original expectations, such that the project is not currently breaking even in terms of operational cash flow at the current run rate.

It added that, in light of the operational difficulties experienced in July and August 2018, the company has revised its guidance for expected total contained copper production in the second half of 2018 to 4,000 tonnes, with approximately 1,000 tonnes expected to be produced in the third-quarter and approximately 3,000 tonnes in the fourth quarter.

Significant fourth quarter uplift expected

The group said the anticipated significant quarterly uplift is due primarily to the change in ore types from transitional to supergene expected to be mined during that quarter.

Cradle Arc said it is currently in advanced negotiations in respect of obtaining the financing required for its planned Dense Media Separation (DMS) upgrades.

It added that the envisaged financing package includes an initial tranche of funding which is to be utilised to improve and rehabilitate the current processing facilities and procure an inventory of certain key spare parts, which should then serve to mitigate the occurrences of further processing plant breakdowns and interruptions during the critical ramp-up phase.

The company said it will now focus on developing sufficient space in the mining pits at Mowana to allow the fourth mining unit to commence operations during the fourth quarter of 2018, thereby enabling ramp-up to full steady state production.

The firm said it currently expects to reach the full nameplate processing rate of 1.2mln tonnes of ore per annum at Mowana during the fourth quarter of 2018.

In early morning trading, Cradle Arc shares had dropped 34.5% lower to 2.75p.

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Wed, 29 Aug 2018 08:43:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/203769/cradle-arc-cuts-2018-production-guidance-from-mowana-copper-mine-after-some-operational-setbacks-203769.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc heads off share dilution by agreeing to buy back convertible loan notes ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/201993/cradle-arc-heads-off-share-dilution-by-agreeing-to-buy-back-convertible-loan-notes-201993.html Cradle Arc (LON:CRA) has thrashed out a deal to redeem its convertible loan notes at a cost of £1.59mln.

Holders of the loan notes have agreed to suspend their conversion rights and accept redemption payments by way of staged and back-end weighted payments up to their scheduled maturity date of 31 December 2018.

The loan notes have a redemption value of £1.28mln and could have been converted into Cradle Arc shares at a significant discount (20 – 25%) to the current share price, so the agreement prevents current shareholders from having their stakes heavily diluted.

READ: Cradle Arc looking forward to enhancing Mowana into a world-class copper mining asset

Cradle Arc will pay for the redemption with funds raised from a share issue at 5p a share plus funds received from certain warrant holders exercising said warrants.

Subscribers to the share issue have chipped in £2.4mln; surplus funds left over after settling the redemption of loan notes will augment working capital for the company's Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

The capital structure has been simplified and strengthened

In yet more financial engineering, the company has also reached agreement to defer certain of its scheduled debt repayments as well as certain payments due to PenMin Botswana (Pty) Limited.

"I am pleased that we have been able to simplify and strengthen our capital structure through this series of financial transactions,” said Kevin van Wouw, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Cradle Arc.

“The new funds raised have primarily been derived from the early exercise of certain warrants held by existing shareholders and debt providers to the company. Taking into account the shares which may potentially have been issued on conversion of the convertible loan notes, we have effectively reduced the company's fully diluted proforma share capital,” he explained.

Cradle Arc said it plans to increase its effective equity interest in the Mowana project by pumping in at least US$1.5mln in new equity in Leboam Holdings, the owner of the Mowana mine.

Cradle Arc already has a 60% stake in Leboam, so it effectively control the company; the new equity will be acquired on a fair value basis to be determined by an independent firm of accountants.

"The planned purchase of additional equity in Leboam, Mowana's holding company, will serve to increase our attributable interest in the Mowana Mine, and thereby help to mitigate the dilution being experienced by existing shareholders from these transactions,” said van Wouw.

“Collectively, the increase in working capital headroom and planned additional equity investment in Leboam, reduces the group's risk profile at a time of volatile copper prices and better positions us to seek and secure the financing required to move forward with our DMS [dense media separation] expansion project in due course," the CEO said.

READ: Cradle Arc to push ahead with process enhancements at Mowana copper mine

Cradle Arc plans to use DMS to boost production substantially at the Mowana copper mine.

DMS is a pre-production process that concentrates the metals in ore and potentially will increase production at Mowana by more than 80% to roughly 22,000 tonnes per year of copper in concentrate.

Operational update on Mowana

On the subject of Mowana, the company said an additional drilling contractor has been established on site in order to augment the mine's drill and blast operations and the third mining unit has been brought on-line as scheduled; however, sporadic processing interruptions were experienced in early July 2018, due to process plant breakdown and power outages, predominantly in the tailings disposal systems.

As a result, the monthly volume of ore processed in July 2018 is now expected to be around 25% less than previously forecast. The processing interruptions have caused some short-term working capital pressures but some slack was built into the ramp-up plan and production guidance for the second half of 2018, therefore, remains unchanged, with Cradle Arc expecting to produce at least 5,700 tonnes of contained copper in the period.

Processing optimisation is ongoing as the company continues to ramp-up to steady-state production.

Shares in Cradle Arc were down three-eighths of a penny in early deals at 5.625p.

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Wed, 01 Aug 2018 08:38:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/201993/cradle-arc-heads-off-share-dilution-by-agreeing-to-buy-back-convertible-loan-notes-201993.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc exits non-core project in Burkina Faso ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/200105/cradle-arc-exits-non-core-project-in-burkina-faso-200105.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) has announced the disposal of assets in Burkina Faso which are deemed to be ‘non-core’ to the business.

It is disposing the company’s subsidiary Société Miniére de Kerboulé SARL (or SMK) which holds the wholly-owned Arae and Gassel-Manere exploration licences that together comprise the Kerboulé Gold Project.

WATCH: New mine plan delivering increased production for Cradle Arc

The company will receive a nominal fee of US$1 for the transaction, while the acquirer will assume all ongoing operating costs and SMK's liabilities. At the same time, the company is required to pay the acquirer the equivalent of US$17,700.

In a statement, Cradle Arc noted that since producing resource estimates for the project, back in 2015, access to the project has been “hampered by the deteriorating security situation” and it noted that armed extremist groups have been operating in the area.

“Accordingly, defining a path for further exploration through to potential development activities on both Arae and Gassel-Manere is not possible at this time,” the company said in a statement.

“The lack of near term production potential in comparison to what the company considers much lower risk, higher return investment at the company's Mowana mine has led to the disposal.”

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Wed, 04 Jul 2018 08:19:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/200105/cradle-arc-exits-non-core-project-in-burkina-faso-200105.html
<![CDATA[Media files - New mine plan delivering increased production for Cradle Arc Plc ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/9734/new-mine-plan-delivering-increased-production-for-cradle-arc-plc-9734.html Thu, 28 Jun 2018 15:53:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/9734/new-mine-plan-delivering-increased-production-for-cradle-arc-plc-9734.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc looking forward to enhancing Mowana into a world-class copper mining asset ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199761/cradle-arc-looking-forward-to-enhancing-mowana-into-a-world-class-copper-mining-asset-199761.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA), the owner of the Mowana copper project in Botswana, is encouraged by the long-term pricing fundamentals for copper.

The company said in its full-year results statement that the ramp-up to processing a targeted 12,000 tonnes a year of copper in concentrate continues to advance in accordance with the company's accelerated development plan.

READ: Cradle Arc reaches operational break-even at the Mowana copper project in Botswana

Over the coming months, the company will aim to progress its plans to add a dense media separation (DMS) pre-processing unit, as well as making other improvements, which should serve to further improve and enhance the extraction process.

Cradle Arc said its accelerated development plan would enable it to fast-track access to the deeper supergene and sulphide ores at Mowana, which have demonstrated better recoveries and grades, and in turn improve the overall economics of the project.

Since the commencement of the plan, the company has had two mining units working full time in the Mowana open pit and seen recoveries improve. A third mining unit is scheduled to be brought on-line before the end of June 2018, following which the company will focus on developing sufficient space in the mining pits to enable the fourth mining unit to commence operations towards the end of the third quarter of this year.

“From recovery levels of just 35% experienced in the oxide ores, we are now averaging recoveries of 56% on a steady state blending basis and up to 76% on the supergene material encountered at the current base of pit level at 940RL,” the company said.

The main focus of the group's financial activities in the financial year just ended was the acquisition of a majority interest in Mowana and funding of the re-commissioning of the mine.

The financial year saw the company earn £570,000 of revenues, comprising test production revenues from Mowana and fees from strategic partners.

A loss before tax of £13.8mln was mainly due to the £12.5mln write-down in the value of the company's Zambian exploration assets.

“Our focus remains firmly on building production and revenues. In support of this, the long-term pricing fundamentals for copper remain strong and our current ramp-up to pre-DMS nameplate capacity of 12,000 tonnes per annum continues to advance in accordance with our accelerated development plan,” said Toby Howell, the non-executive chairman of Cradle Arc.

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Thu, 28 Jun 2018 08:22:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199761/cradle-arc-looking-forward-to-enhancing-mowana-into-a-world-class-copper-mining-asset-199761.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc reaches operational break-even at the Mowana copper project in Botswana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199557/cradle-arc-reaches-operational-break-even-at-the-mowana-copper-project-in-botswana-199557.html Cradle Arc PLC (LON:CRA) expects to achieve project-level operational cash flow break-even at the Mowana copper project in the month of June 2018.

Cash generation is expected to improve throughout the second half of this year, with the mine expected to produce at least 5,700 tonnes of contained copper during the period.

WATCH: Cradle Arc’s CEO: “It’s a very important day for us”

The ramp-up of mining activities at the Mine re-commenced in mid-April 2018 following the announcement of the company's accelerated mine development plan and US$10mln in new secured debt funding.

Full re-commissioning to steady state operations of the process plant is expected to be achieved by the end of the second quarter of this year.

"Our new development approach for the Mowana mine is now delivering the increased production planned as a result of the accelerated mine plan announced in April 2018,” said Kevin van Wouw, chief executive of Cradle Arc.

"Although it is still relatively early in the ramp-up stage of operations under the company's revised mine plan, I am delighted that the key performance criteria set by the board are currently being met and backed-up by actual operational data. This is an opportune time to be bringing on additional production to the copper market - positioning the company to take advantage of currently tight global supply conditions."

In early afternoon trading, Cradle Arc shares were 8.7% higher at 6.25p.

-- Adds share price --

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Tue, 26 Jun 2018 08:14:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199557/cradle-arc-reaches-operational-break-even-at-the-mowana-copper-project-in-botswana-199557.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc chief operating officer appointed director of business development ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199052/cradle-arc-chief-operating-officer-appointed-director-of-business-development-199052.html Cradle Arc Inc (LON:CRA) chief operating officer Mark Jones will become the director of business development, focusing on seeking growth opportunities similar to the Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

The base and precious metals explorer said Jones will evaluate prospective assets in Africa that complement the company’s existing portfolio.

READ: Cradle Arc re-jigs mine plan at Mowana to speed up development

The Africa-focused group said chief executive Kevin van Wouw has taken operational responsibilities at Mowana as it “enters into a phase of significant growth” through the implementation of the DMS project, subject to securing requisite financing.

"As a company, we continue to evaluate new opportunities, and Mark's adoption of this new role represents an important step in our organic growth strategy,” said van Wouw.

“We are very grateful for Mark's input into the Mining Planning and Management of the maiden mining reserve estimate at Mowana, facilitating our accelerated development plan."

The company also announced that the exercise period of 35,668,420 new warrants to be issued has been extended by six months to 20 February 2020.

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Mon, 18 Jun 2018 14:10:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/199052/cradle-arc-chief-operating-officer-appointed-director-of-business-development-199052.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Cradle Arc’s CEO: “It’s a very important day for us” ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/9413/cradle-arcs-ceo-its-a-very-important-day-for-us-9413.html Thu, 31 May 2018 12:43:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/9413/cradle-arcs-ceo-its-a-very-important-day-for-us-9413.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc unveils maiden reserve for Mowana open pit ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/197988/cradle-arc-unveils-maiden-reserve-for-mowana-open-pit-197988.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) has unveiled a maiden ore reserve for the open pit portion of the Mowana copper mine in northeast Botswana.

The new report, produced by Wardell Armstrong International (WAI), sees 31.8mln tonnes of proved and probable reserves at a grade of 1.17% of copper, representing 370,800 tonnes of contained copper.

Meanwhile, it increases the project’s measured and indicated resource increased to 55mln tonnes for a total of 640,000 tonnes of copper, a 37% expansion.

WATCH: Cradle Arc’s CEO: “It’s a very important day for us”

 Life of mine accordingly increases by 3 years to 14 years - also, some 34,500 tonnes worth of inferred resources are presently treated as waste, and not included as part of the life of mine plan.

The schedule anticipates average life of mine production of around 21,000 tonnes per year, peaking at 27,000 tonnes in year three.

Cradle Arc said the new reserve is estimated to be worth US$272.8mln (net present value) after tax.

"The successful completion of the Ore Reserve Estimate and upgrade of the Mineral Resource Estimate underpins the significant scale and long term commercial value potential of Mowana,” said Kevin van Wouw, Cradle Arc chief executive.

“WAI's independent assessment further supports our recently implemented accelerated development plan announced in April 2018, which we anticipate enabling us to reach steady state production and positive cash flows more rapidly, in addition to enabling management to make the final decision regarding the implementation of the DMS upgrades as we seek to ramp-up production and ultimately strengthen the value fundamentals of Mowana.”

He added: “Mining operations at Mowana have been ramping-up over the last six weeks and we currently have two mining units operating full time in the open pit. 

“These works will support a doubling of tonnage to the existing processing plant and the planned integration of DMS will then enable the plant to produce an average of approximately 21,000 tonnes of copper per annum, and up to 27,000 tonnes of copper in year 3, over a newly extended 14-year life of mine."

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Thu, 31 May 2018 07:52:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/197988/cradle-arc-unveils-maiden-reserve-for-mowana-open-pit-197988.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc seeks new partner for Kossanto West gold project ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/196708/cradle-arc-seeks-new-partner-for-kossanto-west-gold-project-196708.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) told investors that it will retain 100% of the Kossanto West gold project in Mali following Randgold Resources Plc (LON:RRS) decision to exit a partnership agreement made back in February 2016.

Randgold’s 65% participating interest in the two licences - Kobokoto Est and Koussikoto - that make up Kossanto West return to Cradle Arc , and the AIM-quoted explorer said it continues to believe the project is highly prospective.

Indeed, it highlighted that there has been considerable corporate activity in the immediate vicinity in recent months.

WATCH: Cradle Arc announces maiden JORC resource for Mawana project 

Additionally, Cradle Arc claimed it had received multiple expressions of interest from other exploration companies during the time it was partnered with Randgold, and said it would now seek a new partner for the continued exploration and advancement of the licences.

Going forward, Cradle Arc will now retain a comprehensive database of the results from Randgold’s field activities over the past two years. 

"Randgold have been an excellent JV partner to Cradle Arc over the past two years and their grassroots regional exploration campaigns have added significantly to our understanding of Kossanto West,” said Kevin van Wouw, Cradle Arc chief executive.

“As a result of the work performed to date, both by Randgold and Cradle Arc, we continue to believe in the prospectivity of Kossanto West and are confident that the extensive gold mineralisation that is present at multiple targets across this expansive 127 kilometre squared exploration project can be further proven up. 

He added: “We will now discuss the best development path with existing and potential partners to continue the exploration work."

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Thu, 10 May 2018 07:39:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/196708/cradle-arc-seeks-new-partner-for-kossanto-west-gold-project-196708.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc enters option agreement for joint venture or sale of subsidiary ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/195021/cradle-arc-enters-option-agreement-for-joint-venture-or-sale-of-subsidiary-195021.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) said it has entered into an option agreement with Singa Holdings Zambia Private Limited to either establish a joint venture or acquire its subsidiary, Luiri Gold Mines Limited.

The AIM-listed precious metals explorer said the first option agreement would allow Singa to acquire Luiri, which holds the group’s Matala and Dunrobin gold assets in Zambia, for US$2.5mln until it expires on 1 July 2018.

WATCH: Cradle Arc announces maiden JORC resource for Mawana project

If the option agreement is exercised, following the acquisition of Luiri Cradle Arc will receive a royalty of 1.5% of gross revenue generated from the Matala and Dunrobin gold assets, up to a maximum aggregate amount of the net present value of US$2.5mln discounted at 8%.

The group added that it had also granted Singa an exclusive option, expiring on 30 June 2018, to form a joint venture for the operation of the Matala and Dunrobin assets.

If this option is agreed, any such joint venture terminates upon the commencement of commercial gold production. If Singa chooses to enter the joint venture, Cradle Arc said it has the right to require Singa to exercise the acquisition option.

Cradle Arc added that an option fee of US$30,000 was payable by Singa to the company in three equal monthly tranches from the date of the agreement.

Kevin van Wouw, chief executive of Cradle Arc, commented: "The development of our Zambian gold assets has long been an important goal for the Company.  We are, however, extremely mindful of the potential dilution that raising equity funds for the development of Matala could have on existing shareholders at the Company's current share price, and we therefore consider that this partnership with Singa represents the best path towards potential production in the near to mid-term.

He added: "Should the Share Option be exercised, the total amount payable to Cradle Arc would, in our view, represent fair value given the project's current stage of development and will support the Company's future strategy.  On exercise of the Share Option, the Company will receive US$2.5mln, which will contribute towards the cost of the planned Dense Media Separation (DMS) upgrades at the Group's Mowana Copper Mine, together with the potential future royalty stream."

Cradle Arc shares were steady at 6.98p in early trading Monday.

--Adds share price--

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Mon, 16 Apr 2018 08:05:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/195021/cradle-arc-enters-option-agreement-for-joint-venture-or-sale-of-subsidiary-195021.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Cradle Arc announces maiden JORC resource for Mawana project ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/8981/cradle-arc-announces-maiden-jorc-resource-for-mawana-project-8981.html Tue, 03 Apr 2018 08:12:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/8981/cradle-arc-announces-maiden-jorc-resource-for-mawana-project-8981.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc re-jigs mine plan at Mowana to speed up development ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/194116/cradle-arc-re-jigs-mine-plan-at-mowana-to-speed-up-development-194116.html Cradle Arc Plc (LON:CRA) is to accelerate the development of Mowana in Botswana to get the copper mine into profit more quickly.

The junior has also upgraded the copper resource using modern JORC standards to 861,000 tonnes of contained copper at a grade of 1.15%. Of that, measured and indicated resources are 466,000 tonnes of contained copper.

READ: Cradle Arc eyeing production expansion after ramp-up completes at Mowana

On a comparable basis, the total resource increased by 6%.

Kevin van Wouw, Cradle Arc’s chief executive, said the emphasis was now on increasing throughput and building towards profitability. 

The accelerated plan will see four mining units in service in the Mowana open pit to access ore below the 950m level.

A new US$10mln debt facility has been arranged to fund the new mine plan and also to refinance the offtake linked facility with Fujax.

WATCH: Cradle Arc announces maiden JORC resource for Mawana project

“The net funds raised will enable us to bolster our mining fleet, accelerate access to the supergene and sulphide ores where grades are higher and recoveries have been shown to be strong,” said Van Wouw.

Initial production at Mowana is expected to be 12,000 tonnes of copper each year rising to 20,000tpa eventually through the introduction of a processing technique known as dense media separation.

A maiden JORC (2012) ore reserve estimate for Mowana is scheduled for this quarter.

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Tue, 03 Apr 2018 07:37:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/194116/cradle-arc-re-jigs-mine-plan-at-mowana-to-speed-up-development-194116.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc eyeing production expansion after ramp-up completes at Mowana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/191148/cradle-arc-eyeing-production-expansion-after-ramp-up-completes-at-mowana-191148.html Cradle Arc Resources PLC (LON:CRA) made its debut on AIM on 24 January 2018, after a year spent putting the Mowana copper mine back into production.

“It’s now owner operated," says chief executive Kevin van Wouw. The last piece of necessary equipment was delivered in February.

READ: Cradle Arc to push ahead with process enhancements at Mowana copper mine

"That puts us in a position where we can reach nameplate capacity.”

It hasn't all been plain sailing, though. As with many start-up operations, there have been teething problems with the plant and processing facilities, and initial targets have been missed. But those problems are being addressed and the company is now on track to hit nameplate capacity during the fourth quarter of 2018.

That’s currently set at 12,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate per year, although plans are in place to push that on up to at least 20,000 tonnes in due course.

That profile of rising production, particularly when set against the backdrop of a strong copper market, proved an enticing prospect for London investors last year when Cradle Arc was marketing.

Once the company had completed its reversal of the Mowana asset into what was then called Alecto, it was able to go out for £3.25mln in pre-IPO money, securing a further £2.4mln on admission.

WATCH: Cradle Arc PLC renews two prospecting licenses 'with significant potential'

Admittedly, it did have to come back to the market in April for US$10mln in secured debt funding, but that money has successfully been deployed, and the company has now mined through the tricky transitional ores. 

Cradle Arc is thus a straightforward enough proposition: a with plans to increase output and a clear idea of how to do so.

“We will get Wardell Armstrong to do a new block model resource to confirm the life of mine,” says van Wouw.

Already a key component is in.

Cradle Arc reported on 31 January that a study by the well-known mining consultant SGS has confirmed the viability of using dense media separation techniques to separate ore from waste at Mowana, and is now finalising arrangements to finance the installation of the new plant.

The impact is likely to be significant and could, as part of the feasibility study, boost the net present value of Mowana from the current US$87mln to upwards of US$245mln.

Part of that value uplift would come from confirmation of the viability of increasing output to as much as 22,000 tonnes per year, and there would be corresponding economies of scale.

At this stage, it’s estimated that the application of the dense media separation option to the expanded operation would result in an internal rate of return (IRR) of 55%.

To formalise those estimates, the technical information gleaned from the SGS study will now be plugged into the work Wardell is undertaking.

Copper outlook positive

But at this stage, Van Wouw puts the overall cost of putting the second phase into production at around US$20mln.

In the meantime, the outlook for copper is broadly positive, after a rocky few months.

Van Wouw is bullish in the short-to-medium term, in the context of the general infrastructure spending in emerging markets. 

It all sets a useful context for Cradle Arc to initiate expansion, and Botswana’s continuing political stability provides the perfect backdrop.

One route for that expansion will be through the Makala project, which lies 70 kilometres away from Mowana. “There is a historic resource that grades 1.8% copper and one ounce of silver per tonne,” says van Wouw.

Extra upside will come too from the company’s gold activities in Zambia, where it has a contract to design, build and operate a gold mine called Matala.

That’s currently in the midst of being funded, so watch this space.

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Mon, 05 Feb 2018 11:52:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/191148/cradle-arc-eyeing-production-expansion-after-ramp-up-completes-at-mowana-191148.html
<![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc to push ahead with process enhancements at Mowana copper mine ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/190894/cradle-arc-to-push-ahead-with-process-enhancements-at-mowana-copper-mine-190894.html CradleArc Plc(LON:CRA) should be able to use Dense Media Separation (DMS) to boost production substantially at the Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

An independent test report from SGS South Africa confirmed its suitability and Cradle Arc now intends to go ahead and install a plant.

WATCH: Cradle Arc PLC back on AIM and fired up over Mowana potential

DMS is a pre-production process that concentrates the metals in ore and potentially will increase production at Mowana by more than 80% to approximately 22,000tpa of copper in concentrate.

Costs would also be lower, with the estimated value of the project forecast to rise to US$245mln from US$87mln through the use of DMS.

The test work demonstrated that pre-concentration can be deployed at Mowana on all low oxide ores, Cradle Arc said.

A new block model for the resource at Mowana is also being prepared, which will enable a new mining schedules that incorporate the DMS study results. 

Kevin van Wouw, Cradle Arc’s chief executive, said: "Our expectation that DMS upgrades should be deployed at Mowana has been confirmed by SGS's report. 

READ: Cradle Arc to rejoin AIM next week following Mowana acquisition

“We are confident that we can rapidly move the Mowana mine from operating at its current nameplate capacity capable of producing 12,000 tonnes Cu per annum to more than 20,000 tonnes Cu per annum.

This is expected to dramatically improve cash flows as well as the net present value, he added.

The initial phase of DMS preparatory work will be completed this quarter.

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Wed, 31 Jan 2018 08:50:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/190894/cradle-arc-to-push-ahead-with-process-enhancements-at-mowana-copper-mine-190894.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Cradle Arc PLC back on AIM and fired up over Mowana potential ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/8655/cradle-arc-plc-back-on-aim-and-fired-up-over-mowana-potential-8655.html Wed, 24 Jan 2018 11:17:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/8655/cradle-arc-plc-back-on-aim-and-fired-up-over-mowana-potential-8655.html <![CDATA[News - Cradle Arc to rejoin AIM next week following Mowana acquisition ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/190298/cradle-arc-to-rejoin-aim-next-week-following-mowana-acquisition-190298.html Copper miner Alecto Minerals is set to return to AIM next week (24 January) under its new name Cradle Arc PLC.

The junior completed the reverse takeover of the Mowana copper mine in Botswana in November, paving the way for a re-financing and re-listing.

READ: Alecto Minerals to lose AIM listing as Mowana completion drags on

An AIM Schedule One (pre-listing) announcement indicated Cradle Arc will be valued at £20.1mln following a £2.4mln fund raise.

Mowana’s vendor Kevin Van Wouw will be chief executive with a 57.4% stake in the enlarged company.

Institutions City Financial and Hadron Capital will own 10.55% and 3.59% respectively.

Alecto originally agreed to buy Mowana more than a year ago (in December 2016) but had its listing cancelled as the deal was not completed within the junior market’s time deadlines.

The purchase of 60% of Cradle Arc, which owns 100% of Mowana, was eventually concluded on November 13 last year.

Mowana, in north-east Botswana, has a mineral resource of 686,000 tonnes copper in the Measured and Indicated categories (JORC-code compliant) with an additional 758,000 tonnes in the Inferred category.

The company also has gold assets in Zambia.

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Fri, 19 Jan 2018 12:10:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/190298/cradle-arc-to-rejoin-aim-next-week-following-mowana-acquisition-190298.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals to lose AIM listing as Mowana completion drags on ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/180362/alecto-minerals-to-lose-aim-listing-as-mowana-completion-drags-on-180362.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) is to lose its AIM listing due to the prolonged suspension of its shares while the proposed acquisition of the Mowana copper mine in Botswana progresses.

Shares in Alecto have been suspended since 21 December 2016 while it completes the admission document for the deal, which has been structured as reverse takeover.

Under AIM rules, six months is the maximum a company’s shares can be suspended.

Alecto has been granted one extension already, but has now been informed its listing will be cancelled on 11 July.

The junior added it still intends to proceed with the acquisition and to seek admission to trading for the enlarged group on AIM as a new applicant. 

Extensive technical, financial and legal due diligence on Mowana and its holding companies has been carried out  the results of which will be reflected in the admission document as appropriate. 

Indeed, Alecto re-started production at Mowana in March and to date approximately 4,300 tonnes of copper concentrate have been produced and sold to offtake partner, Fujax Minerals and Energy.  

However, Alecto warned that in the event the event that the Mowana acquisition does not complete on the expected timetable, more funds will be required without which it faces liquidation.

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Wed, 05 Jul 2017 07:43:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/180362/alecto-minerals-to-lose-aim-listing-as-mowana-completion-drags-on-180362.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto says Mowana due diligence nearly complete, will seek funds to complete deal ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/179042/alecto-says-mowana-due-diligence-nearly-complete-will-seek-funds-to-complete-deal-179042.html Alecto Minerals PLC’s (LON:ALO) due diligence on the Mowana copper mine in Botswana is nearly complete and it expects to start a funding exercise shortly to complete the deal.

The Mowana mine returned to production in March and is expected to ramp up to 100,000 tonnes of ore processed this month with 3,286 tonnes of copper concentrate produced.

Working capital in the ramp up phase has been provided by Alecto and Fujax Minerals and Energy Limited, the offtake partner of Alecto subsidiary Leboam. 

Alecto currently has cash balances of approximately £140,000, which tis sufficient to cover expected corporate costs through to completion of the acquisition on the current anticipated timetable.   

Alecto added it had also appointed mining heavyweight Roger Williams as a non-executive director with immediate effect.

Williams was previously CFO of Randgold Resources Limited and JSE-listed AECI Limited. He is interim Commercial Executive for Digby Wells and Associates, an environmental and social consultancy to the resources sector in Africa.

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Fri, 09 Jun 2017 16:06:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/179042/alecto-says-mowana-due-diligence-nearly-complete-will-seek-funds-to-complete-deal-179042.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals raises £800,000; hopes for AIM re-admission by end June ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/178890/alecto-minerals-raises-800000-hopes-for-aim-re-admission-by-end-june-178890.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has issued £800,000 worth of convertible loan notes to help fulfil the working capital requirements at its recently-acquired Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

The Africa-focused explorer told investors that the coming months are “expected to be transformational for Alecto” and that the fundraise announced today would help to support the business during the period.

If not converted into Alecto shares, the notes are repayable by 2 December 2017 and carry an interest rate of 20%.

WATCH: Mowana mine hitting full-time production 'all good stuff', says Alecto's Mark Jones

Interest payments will be satisfied through the issue of new Alecto shares at 0.06625p, which will result in 241.5mln shares being issued to the holders of the notes.

Instead of waiting to be paid back, the holders may opt to convert some or all of their notes into ALO shares during a 10-day period after the firm’s shares are readmitted to AIM - the shares are currently suspended at 0.07p.

The closing price of Alecto shares on the day they are readmitted will set an upper limit on the price at which the shares can be converted, while note holders may opt to convert the shares at 80% of the previous day's closing mid-market price if that is lower.

"We are pleased to secure this additional CLN facility which, together with the revenue currently being generated at the Mowana copper mine from ongoing copper concentrate production, will go towards fulfilling the mine's working capital requirements ahead of effecting the first phase of our full scale production plan at Mowana,” said chief executive Mark Jones.

“The coming months are expected to be transformational for Alecto and this CLN will support us while we drive our business forward.”

AIM re-admission by end of the month

In the same stock market announcement, Alecto told investors that it expects its shares – which have been suspended since the end of 2016 – to be readmitted to AIM by the end of June.

In order to achieve that, the company needs to complete the reverse takeover of Cradle Arc Investments, owner of the Mowana mine, which it says it is progressing.

Mowana production update

CEO Jones also gave a brief update on the operational performance of the mine, which is currently in the process of ramping up to full production capacity.

As noted last month, Jones said Mowana was still on track deliver production of 12,000 tonnes of copper concentrate in the third quarter of this year.

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Wed, 07 Jun 2017 08:23:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/178890/alecto-minerals-raises-800000-hopes-for-aim-re-admission-by-end-june-178890.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Mowana mine hitting full-time production 'all good stuff', says Alecto's Mark Jones ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/7456/mowana-mine-hitting-full-time-production-all-good-stuff-says-alecto-s-mark-jones-7456.html Mon, 15 May 2017 11:21:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/7456/mowana-mine-hitting-full-time-production-all-good-stuff-says-alecto-s-mark-jones-7456.html <![CDATA[News - Mowana copper mine in full-time production, says Alecto ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/177718/mowana-copper-mine-in-full-time-production-says-alecto-177718.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has told investors that its Mowana copper mine in Botswana is now in full-time production.

That follows on from the first blast at the end of April and a successful trial period during which Aleecto produced saleable concentrate of up to 28% copper.

So far, the company has produced more than 1,900 tonnes of copper concentrate which is being sold to its offtake partner, Fujax.

WATCH: Mowana mine hitting full-time production 'all good stuff', says Alecto boss

“Mowana is now a full-time copper production operation and we look forward to gaining ownership of the project subject to shareholder approval at which point, we believe, our company will benefit from a significant value re-rating.,” said chief executive Mark Jones.

“Once effected, we will have taken control of a significant asset which has been subject to more than US$150mln of investment in the past for an acquisition price of approximately US$10mln.”

A step closer to resuming trading on AIM

The Competent Persons Report (CPR) on Alecto’s African assets has also been completed, which the firm said represented an “important milestone”.

It takes Alecto one step closer to the publication of the admission document which is needed in order to resume trading on the AIM market.

WATCH: Take a tour of the mine

The company reckons it will have the document published early next month (June), which would hopefully lead to readmission within the next six to eight weeks.

The CPR estimates a current resource of circa 172 million tonnes (Mt) at 0.84% copper at Mowana, of which 26Mt sits within two existing pre-stripped 350 metre-deep pits. 

READ: The Competent Persons Report in full

Allowing for some overlap, Alecto estimates the resource at 162Mt at 0.84% copper. That equates to around 481,000 tonnes of copper in the measured and indicated category and a further 732,000 tonnes of copper in the inferred category.

Alecto intends to ramp up to an annualised rate of 12,000 tonnes of copper in the third quarter of this year. That would give Mowana a net present value (NPV) of US$87.5mln for the initial 12,000 tonnes per annum production scenario based on an average copper price of US$2.80 a pound (lb).

Production costs at the mine are expected to average US$1.50/lb over the mine life based on an average metallurgical recovery of 91%.

Additional upside still at Mowana

The numbers make for decent reading for Alecto and its investors, but the firm reckons there are possible option which, if taken, could boost the project further.

It’s considering installing a Dense Media Separation (DMS) unit which could see throughput double to 2.6Mt per annum, yielding around 23,000 tonnes of copper by the third quarter of 2018.

That would send the mine’s net present value soaring to US$245mln.

A future underground operation could add value at Mowana too. It would let Alecto tap into the rest of the resource which is located down dip and along the strike from the open pits currently being mined.

If Alecto were to go underground, it could extend the life of mine to 20 years.

“We are delighted that the CPR demonstrates the compelling economics of our project even without the installation of a DMS, now that the asset is unencumbered by debt,” added Jones.

“Even better is that it starts to show the tremendous potential upside available using modern techniques identified by our experienced industry partners.”

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Fri, 12 May 2017 09:50:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/177718/mowana-copper-mine-in-full-time-production-says-alecto-177718.html
<![CDATA[Media files - 'We are a solid proposition' says Alecto Minerals PLC as it appoints Capital Drilling at Mowana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/7164/-we-are-a-solid-proposition-says-alecto-minerals-plc-as-it-appoints-capital-drilling-at-mowana-7164.html Fri, 24 Mar 2017 15:03:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/7164/-we-are-a-solid-proposition-says-alecto-minerals-plc-as-it-appoints-capital-drilling-at-mowana-7164.html <![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals powers ahead at Mowana, appoints Capital Drilling ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/175240/alecto-minerals-powers-ahead-at-mowana-appoints-capital-drilling-175240.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has awarded London-listed group Capital Drilling Limited (LON:CAPD) the contract for Drill and Blast at its Mowana copper project in Botswana.

Mark Jones, Alecto’s chief executive, said: "We are moving at speed towards delivering continuous production and first sales at Mowana meaning that the atmosphere on site is buoyant, particularly given that the first blast is anticipated in just a matter of days. 

“It is significant that we have been able to sign up a company of Capital Drilling's profile to provide future Drill and Blast services, and with Giant already on site, our stockpile is increasing.” 

WATCH: Alecto a "solid proposition", says boss ...

Jones said that a local contractor will carry out the first production blast by the end of this month while Capital mobilises its equipment.

Giant Transport, the mining contractor for the project for an initial period of six months, has started work with the conventional crushing and screening circuit operating for two weeks, stockpiling crushed ore.

Test production has also now commenced, producing saleable concentrate up to 28% copper (Cu), which will comprise part of the first tranche of product to be delivered to Fujax Minerals and Energy Limited  under a five year copper offtake contract

This early test production will help the project’s value, Jones said, so the time for the shares to return from suspension on AIM has been pushed back until  end May.

“Most importantly, we have switched the plant back on as part of a test phase and this has been a great success, producing saleable copper concentrate. 

 "Of course, there are still some hurdles to overcome before we can announce that we are in full scale production, but our project is being de-risked on a continuous basis.”

The Mowana acquisition was announced  in December.

The deal will see Alecto acquire a 60% interest for about £6.7mln made up of £1mln cash and the rest in shares.

Alecto believes Mowana can be brought back into production for US$20mln, which will be met through offtake and vendor financing deals.

At a copper price of US$2.50 per lb, Alecto's internal estimate for the project's net present value is US$245mln.

-- adds background--

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Wed, 22 Mar 2017 15:50:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/175240/alecto-minerals-powers-ahead-at-mowana-appoints-capital-drilling-175240.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto making “rapid progress” at Mowana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/173837/alecto-making-rapid-progress-at-mowana-173837.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has told investors it is making “rapid progress” in bringing its Mowana copper project in Botswana  back into production.

The explorer has contracted Giant Transport Holdings to undertake mining operations at the project on an initial six months basis.

Two bulldozers, two excavators and five 40-tonne dump trucks are also on site and have been mobilised, alongside Alecto’s own excavator dozer and front end loader. Further equipment is in transit, the company added.

Delighted to see first yellow metal on site and starting to move rock: https://t.co/ZUXF3QPoo3 #Mowana #Botswana #Copper #Mining #ALO pic.twitter.com/P5Zo6uyjaf

— Alecto Minerals PLC (@AlectoMinerals) February 27, 2017

Pit clean-up operations and reverse circulation (RC) grade control drilling can now start to test the near-term production targets, while the contract for the supply of fuel and lubricants has been signed, with delivery expected in the next couple of weeks or so.

“The arrival of our mining contractor and the earth moving equipment on site marks the beginning of a very exciting three-month period, which will be characterised by production, sales and renewed activity at Mowana,” said chief executive Mark Jones.

“With grade control drilling due to commence next week, recruitment of key personnel continuing and process plant start-up planned shortly, this Project is becoming a tangible reality.”

Jones also reiterated his belief that, under Alecto’s ownership, Mowana will deliver “greater production at a lower cost than has historically been achieved”.

In addition, the company told investors that a strong recruitment drive is underway with over 150 positions at the project already filled.

Higher than usual rainfalls in Botswana since the end of 2016 have meant that a de-watering programme has had to be started at the pit, although Alecto said this would have no impact on the near-term production plans.

Mowana – which was operated between 2008 and 2015 before it was shut – has a resource of 683,000 tonnes of copper in the measured and indicated categories.

Shares in Alecto were off 3% to trade at 0.064p.

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Mon, 27 Feb 2017 15:25:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/173837/alecto-making-rapid-progress-at-mowana-173837.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals raises £1mln to fund restart of recently-acquired copper mine ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/171741/alecto-minerals-raises-1mln-to-fund-restart-of-recently-acquired-copper-mine-171741.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has wasted no time in securing some of the financing to bring back on stream its recently acquired Mowana copper mine in Botswana.

Read Alecto Minerals to buy copper mine in Botswana

The Africa-focused gold and copper explorer has issued £1mln worth of convertible loan notes to help fund the restarting of operations at the project.

If not converted into Alecto shares the notes are repayable by 16 July 2017 and carry an interest rate of 20% plus an initial £50,000 fee.

Interest payments will be satisfied through the issue of Alecto shares at 0.06625p a pop, which means up to 301.890mln shares could end up being issued to the holders of the notes.

The holders may opt, however, to convert some or all of the notes into Alecto shares in a 10-day period after Alecto's shares are readmitted to Aim (the shares are currently suspended).

The closing price of Alecto shares on the day they are readmitted will set an upper limit on the price at which the shares can be converted; note holders may opt to convert the shares at 80% of the previous day's closing mid-market price if that is lower.

Alecto will syphon off some of the funds raised from the loan note issue to provide a loan of up to US$1mln to Cradle Arc Investments, the company that owns the Mowana copper mine in Botswana and which is being acquired by Alecto via reverse takeover.

The South African group providing off-take financing to Mowana – Fujax Minerals and Energy – will also lend up to US$1mln to Cradle.

That will give Cradle around US$2mln in short-term funding to help bring the mine back into production, which is slated for the first quarter of this year.

At a copper price of US$2.50 per lb, Alecto's internal estimate for the project's net present value is US$245mln.

Mowana has a resource of 683,000 tonnes of copper in the Measured and Indicated categories.

The mine operated between 2008-2015 before it was shut, but Alecto believes it can remodel the operation to slash its costs.

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Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:51:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/171741/alecto-minerals-raises-1mln-to-fund-restart-of-recently-acquired-copper-mine-171741.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Copper mine acquisition a “stunning opportunity” for Alecto Minerals ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/6640/copper-mine-acquisition-a-stunning-opportunity-for-alecto-minerals-6640.html Wed, 21 Dec 2016 12:15:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/6640/copper-mine-acquisition-a-stunning-opportunity-for-alecto-minerals-6640.html <![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals to buy copper mine in Botswana ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/170789/alecto-minerals-to-buy-copper-mine-in-botswana-170789.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) is to take over the running of the mothballed Mowana copper mine in Botswana and bring it back on stream.  

The deal will be structured as a reverse takeover, with the current owner of the mine in north eastern Botswana ending up with a controlling stake. 

Alecto said copper mines in Africa have struggled with its low price recently and years of poor management but this is an opportunity where it can produce at much lower costs than previously.

The deal will see Alecto will acquire a 60% interest in Mowana subject to the regulatory and shareholder approval hurdles and have a ten year management contract.

Shares have been suspended while this process works through with Alecto also mulling a convertible fund raise to bring in additional  capital and an equity funding when the shares resume trading again.

The consideration is about £6.7mln made up of £1mln cash and the rest in shares.

Alecto believes Mowana can be brought back into production for US$20mln, which will be met through offtake and vendor financing deals.

At a copper price of US$2.50 per lb, Alecto's internal estimate for the project's net present value is US$245mln.

Mowana has a resource of 683,000 tonnes of copper in the Measured and Indicated categories.

The mine operated between 2008-2015 before it was shut, but Alecto believes it can remodel the operation to slash its costs.

A Dense Media Separation plant to increase throughput to 2.6mln tpa and lift copper production to 22,000 tonnes per year.

The vendor is PemMin Botswana, a controlled by Kevin Van Wouw a specialist mining contractor based in South Africa.

Following completion of the deal, PenMin and Gerald Chapman, a director of Alecto who was involved in the transaction, will own 29.9% each of the AIM-listed group.

Mark Jones, Alecto’s chief executive, said Mowana is a first class copper mining project and represents an ideal opportunity to achieve a complete transformation of Alecto.

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Wed, 21 Dec 2016 08:32:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/170789/alecto-minerals-to-buy-copper-mine-in-botswana-170789.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto completes Ashanti Gold Corp option deal in Mali ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/169591/alecto-completes-ashanti-gold-corp-option-deal-in-mali-169591.html Alecto Minerals PLC’s (LON:ALO) previously announced joint venture deal with Ashanti Gold Corp has now been completed.

Ashanti has the exclusive right to earn-in for a 65 per cent interest in the Kossanto East project in Mali, by completing a preliminary feasibility study within a period of 36 months.

If an extension to the Option Period is required, beyond the initial 36-months, then Ashanti has the option to pay to Alecto US$140,000 for each 6-month extension, up to a maximum of 12 additional months in total, to complete the PFS.

Should Ashanti not complete the PFS within the Option Period, then it may elect to pay to Alecto US$4 million in cash to satisfy the earn-in requirement

Meanwhile, Randgold Resources' exploration teams have commenced their new field season activities at Kossanto West, and Kola Gold and Alecto are applying for the extension of the Karan exploration permit in southern Mali.

In addition, predevelopment activities at the Matala project in Zambia has begun.

 

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Mon, 28 Nov 2016 08:14:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/169591/alecto-completes-ashanti-gold-corp-option-deal-in-mali-169591.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Alecto Minerals' Jones confident over Matala finance ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/6409/alecto-minerals-jones-confident-over-matala-finance-6409.html Thu, 17 Nov 2016 11:54:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/6409/alecto-minerals-jones-confident-over-matala-finance-6409.html <![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals edging closer to sealing Matala project finance ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/169125/alecto-minerals-edging-closer-to-sealing-matala-project-finance-169125.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) is making progress on securing funding for its Matala project, which will be Zambia's first major standalone gold mine.

It was originally envisaged that Chinese financing could be wrapped up by the end of September but that timeline has slipped, not least due to Presidential elections in Zambia in  that month.

In May, Alecto said Xiamen XGMA International Trade Company Ltd had confirmed that huge Chinese State-owned insurer and credit export group Sinosure would provide risk cover but that needed Ministerial support in Zambia and was delayed by the election.

On September 28, Alecto received confirmation of  Sinosure's cover subject to a local Zambian institution holding the security on behalf of the lender.

WATCH: CEO Mark Jones speaks to Proactive's Stocktube

Alecto is "now focusing on completing the last leg of the financing plan, which is to reach agreement with local Zambian institutions for the provision of an on-lending facility and additional security in order to facilitate the flow of funds from China", it said.

The mine is expected to be commissioned in 2017.

Alecto chief executive Mark Jones said: "The company, and our partners, are very excited about what will be a true Zambian gold mining success story, and we are fully committed to ensuring that it happens. 

"Due to our size, satisfying potential financiers of the merits of taking on project risk has not been without its challenges, and progress has been slower than we would have wished. 

"However, our commitment to the process is undimmed and we continue to believe that bringing Matala in to production is the best way to realise value for shareholders."

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Thu, 17 Nov 2016 08:03:00 +0000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/169125/alecto-minerals-edging-closer-to-sealing-matala-project-finance-169125.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto raises funds for pre-development activities ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/166749/alecto-raises-funds-for-pre-development-activities-166749.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO), the Africa-focused gold and base metal exploration and development company, has raised £600,000 through a share placing.

The shares were placed at 0.075p, a discount to last night’s mid-market closing price of 0.1p. The shares declined to 0.077p in the wake of the announcement.

Funds from the share issue will finance pre-development activities at its Matala gold project in Zambia, where the company said it continues to make progress towards its goal of bringing the 400,000 tonnes per annum project into low-cost production in the near to mid-term.

The newly issued shares represent around 15.2% of the company’s enlarged share capital.

"We are making steady progress towards the conclusion of a funding package for the Matala gold mine,” said Alecto’s chief executive officer, Mark Jones.

“We have every confidence that we will complete this financing and bring Matala into production in 2017; however, we are obliged to progress at the speed dictated by our counter-parties and other external factors,” Jones noted.

“The current fund-raising will strengthen Alecto's position and enable us to complete essential pre-development activities on the ground in Zambia on a timeline within our control,” Jones said.

News of the placing accompanied the company’s interim results, which revealed loss before tax holding relatively steady at £287,155 versus a loss in the first half of last year of £264,320.

Revenue rose to £105,369 from £44,663 the year before.

Chairman Gerald Chapman said he believed the company is poised for significant growth in the next 12 months.

“We have delivered on a number of our stated objectives for our African gold portfolio during the period,” he said, looking back at the first half of 2016.

“We are also evaluating larger projects with a view to building Alecto to become a profitable African metals producer. We are also pleased to have secured value accretive paths for the rest of our portfolio via joint ventures,” Chapman said.  

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Fri, 30 Sep 2016 08:34:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/166749/alecto-raises-funds-for-pre-development-activities-166749.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Zambia the focus for Alecto Minerals ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/5430/zambia-the-focus-for-alecto-minerals-5430.html Mon, 22 Aug 2016 15:38:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/5430/zambia-the-focus-for-alecto-minerals-5430.html <![CDATA[News - Alecto agrees farm out of third Mali gold property ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/129545/alecto-agrees-farm-out-of-third-mali-gold-property-129545.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) has agreed preliminary terms for Canadian junior Ashanti Gold Corp (CVE:AGZ) to farm-into the Kossanto East gold project in western Mali.

A letter of intent between the two companies has been agreed that will see Ashanti take up to a 65% stake by completing a preliminary feasibility study (PFS) within three years.

 Ashanti will take over as the operator and at the end of the 36 month option a joint venture will be set up.  Alternatively, it can pay US$4mln to take the 65% stake.

Kossanto East has a JORC-compliant resource of 247,000 oz gold currently.

Alecto had originally planned to work with neighbour Desert Gold, the owner of the tenement adjacent to Kossanto East, to develop a new mining district in Mali but this option is now on the backburner said Mark Jones, Alecto's chief executive.

“During the 2015 field season we worked closely with neighbouring Desert Gold Ventures Inc. to complete an internal scoping study for potential joint small scale production. 

“Whilst the economics were positive, it was clear that both company's projects would benefit from additional exploration in order to maximise the potential for future production. 

"Our proposed partnership with Ashanti will enable us to realise the full potential of Kossanto East. 

“With the Gourbassi deposits open along strike and some excellent initial results from exploration targets such as Berola we are confident that together we will be able to build a larger mining play at this very exciting project area.

“In addition, the option remains to work with Desert Gold, should it serve the interests of all parties."

The agreement with Ashanti is the third farm-out in Mali Alecto has negotiated this year.

London-listed giant Randgold Resources (LON:RRS) has partnered with it at the neighbouring Kossanto West project while Karan in southern Mali is now a joint venture with Kola Gold.

The deals have followed Alecto's focus turning fully to the Matala and Dunrobin prospects in Zambia, where gold production is expected to by the second half of next year.  

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Mon, 22 Aug 2016 08:05:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/129545/alecto-agrees-farm-out-of-third-mali-gold-property-129545.html
<![CDATA[Media files - 2017 mine commissioning realistic for Alecto Minerals - CEO ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/5208/2017-mine-commissioning-realistic-for-alecto-minerals-ceo-5208.html Fri, 01 Jul 2016 14:16:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/stocktube/5208/2017-mine-commissioning-realistic-for-alecto-minerals-ceo-5208.html <![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals plots a fast track route in Africa ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/127003/alecto-minerals-plots-a-fast-track-route-in-africa-127003.html In the space of a year, Alecto Minerals (LON:ALO) has gone from exploration junior with some promising acreage to one with big name partners and the near-term prospect of gold production.

The step-change has been impressive against the tough backdrop for the sector.

Twelve months ago the big news was the initial non-JORC code resource of almost a quarter of a million ounces of gold at the Kerboulé project in Burkina Faso.

Now all attention is on Zambia and the Matala project.

Matala on a fast track curve

At one time owned by Aussie miner Luiri Gold, Matala found its way into the Alecto portfolio at the end of last year.

In April, Alecto announced an agreement in principle with Yantai Xinhai Machinery under the terms of which an estimated US$14.4mln in funding will be provided for the construction of the mine, 125 kilometres west of Lusaka.

True, the cost was 943mln shares, or approximately 25% of the enlarged share capital, but with the Zambian government looking favourably on the country’s first major standalone gold mine supports for Matala are stacking up.

Production on schedule for next year

Mark Jones, Alecto’s managing director, says it is a realistic target for production to have started to by the second quarter of next year.

The stars will have to align quite nicely for that to happen, but it’s not unimaginable.

“With cash costs envisaged at around US$780 and a projected internal rate of return of 52%, this project has plenty going for it,” he said.

Alecto’s plans are for a 400,000 tonnes per year open pit while a recent feasibility study  indicated a life of around four years 8 months at $1,200 per ounce gold and NPV of US$28.6mln.

Its interest in Zambia comprises two licences, Matala and Dunrobin, with a JORC-compliant 760,000 oz.

Costs to get Matala into production are estimated at US$18mln with cash generated once it is up and running to fund development of a mine at Dunrobin.

Joint ventures and more

Matala is plenty for a junior to be going on with, but Alecto is keeping other irons in the fire through joint ventures with some well-heeled neighbours.

Post December, the group secured joint ventures with Randgold and Cora Gold for two projects in Mali.

Cora Gold owns tenements adjacent to the Alecto’s Karan project. Cora, a subsidiary of Kola Gold, will pay all of the exploration and development costs.

Funding a scoping study will entitle Cora to a 65% stake, with a further 15% to follow on completion of a bankable study.

At that point, Alecto can decide if it wants to maintain a stake and pay its share of mine development costs or hand it all to Cora.

Randgold meanwhile can take a 65% stake at Kossanto West in Mali with Alecto retaining a 35% participating interest.

An initial work programme will involve further mapping with potential follow up reconnaissance drilling anticipated to be undertaken by Randgold in the first 12 months.

In August, meanwhile, Alecto agreed a farm-out of a third property in Mali with Canadian junior Ashanti Gold  Corp to take a 65% stake in the Kossanto East in return for funding the project to pre-feasibility level.

And to come full circle there is still the opportunity at Kerboule, where Alecto is currently looking for a partner.

And there's still Kerboule

Kerboulé lies just 20 metres along strike from the 5mln ounce Inata gold mine owned by Avocet Mining.

The resource estimate by Wardell Armstrong comes in at 6.2 mln tonnes, grading at 1.16 grams per tonne (g/t) gold for 230,758 ounces of gold, at a cut-off 0.5 g/t.

The resource implies an initial acquisition cost of around US$2.25 per resource ounce of gold, substantially lower than the industry-standard cost, said Jones.

Kerboulé may also be combined with the 247,000 ounces of gold at Kossanto East in Mali as part of a plan to make a sizeable gold distrint in Mali.

The mineralisation at Kerboulé starts from surface, with around 70% contained within the oxide and transitional layers.

 

--  updates for Kossanto East farm-out --

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Fri, 10 Jun 2016 15:17:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/127003/alecto-minerals-plots-a-fast-track-route-in-africa-127003.html
<![CDATA[News - Alecto Minerals becomes pre-production gold miner in 2015 ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/126773/alecto-minerals-becomes-pre-production-gold-miner-in-2015-126773.html Alecto Minerals PLC (LON:ALO) was transformed into a pre-production gold miner in 2015 and the focus now is getting cash flow from  its Matala gold mine in Zambia.

"With an established resource in place with additional upside potential, attractive value fundamentals, a clear route to production and planned vendor financing progressing, our focus going forward is very much on achieving gold production at this project location at the earliest opportunity, it said in final results.

In May, Alecto said it wants the 400,000 tonnes per year open pit up and running within a year and a feasibility study  indicated a life of around four years 8 months at $1,200 per ounce gold and NPV of US$28.6mln.

Post period, the group also secured joint ventures with Randgold and Cora Gold in Mali so it retains exposure to exploration without direct expense, while discussions continue over a partner for its Kerboule prospect in Burkina Faso.

Pre-tax profit in 2015  was £3.34mln compared to a re-stated loss of £767,804 for 2014. This was down to an adjustment of fair value to the group's exploration assets acquired in  November 2015.

The firm had cash of £530,003 (2014: £114,258) as at December  31, which has since been bolstered with a £665,000 placing, allowing it to fund working capital as Matala is progressed.

Alecto shares gained 5.56% to stand at 0.095p at the time of writing.

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Mon, 06 Jun 2016 11:22:00 +0100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk/companies/news/126773/alecto-minerals-becomes-pre-production-gold-miner-in-2015-126773.html