Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Diamondcorp Plc Proactiveinvestors United Kingdom Diamondcorp Plc RSS feed en Fri, 26 Apr 2019 12:47:50 +0100 Genera CMS (Proactiveinvestors) (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp clears refinancing hurdle ]]> DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP) has reached formal agreement with the IDC, one of its major backers in relation to its ability to lend money secured against the Lace Diamond mine in South Africa.

Following the impact of adverse weather, the Lace mine was placed into business administration, and Diamondcorp has since been involved in efforts to refinance the operation via a placing and debt restructuring.

Any new loan issued to its subsidiary will bear 13.5% interest. The loan can be made either in addition to, or as a substitute for, the placing, the conditions for which have yet to be met.

The company also said a Business Rescue Plan will be published in due course, although much is dependent upon how negotiations go with the main union, the AMCU.

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 08:05:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp pushes back placing deadline as talks continue ]]> Southern Africa-focused miner Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has pushed back the deadline for its recent placing, the conditions of which have still yet to be met.

Discussions with the state-owned Industrial Development of South Africa (IDC) are continuing but the agreement in principle reached last week with the Association of Mining & Construction Union (AMCU) has been thrown into doubt.

The mine workers’ union is trying to make “material amendments” to the agreement, Diamondcorp said.

A condition of the placing is that a labour agreement is reached with the AMCU union over back wages and staff reductions, without which the miner has said it faces insolvency.

Diamondcorp added today that if it couldn’t finalise the terms of the original deal in the “very near term”, it would affect the company’s planned maintenance and remediation programme at the Lace mine in South Africa.

As a result, the board has delayed admission of the placing shares to AIM by two weeks to 28 February 2017.

The company currently has a standstill agreement with South African bondholders until 13 March 2017 or until the Business Rescue proceedings at Lace have been concluded; whichever comes first.

The delays in obtaining arrangements with the IDC and AMCU have cast doubts over the timing of the next bond payment due on 14 March.

Johannesburg stock exchange rules state that Diamondcorp must let the holders know if they intend to pay by 23 February.

Because of this, the firm is now speaking with the bondholders to try and extend the standstill.

If Diamondcorp is able to get the IDC and AMCU on side and conclude the placing, the next phase will start to ramp up operations at Lace again.

That will see more money raised and a new management team join the company.

Diamondcorp is Lace’s largest creditor with £36mln owed through a subordinated loan.

 South Africa’s IDC is the next largest creditor with an £18mln project loan.

Ona more positive note, the Lace diamond mine has received an insurance pay out of around £82,000.

Diamondcorp shares remain suspended.

Tue, 14 Feb 2017 07:49:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp extends placing deadline ]]> The conditions to DiamondCorp PLC’s (LON:DCP) most recent placing have not yet been met, the company has admitted.

Discussions with the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC), and the agreement in principle reached with the Association of Mining & Construction Union last week is progressing, although not yet concluded.

Accordingly, DiamondCorp and broker Panmure Gordon have amended the Placing Agreement, and the fundraising is now conditional on admission of the new shares by 14 February, although a backstop date of 28 February has also been allowed for.


The rest of the terms of the placing remain the same, and DiamondCorp’s shares remain suspended, following the impact of catastrophic weather conditions on the company’s Lace mine in South Africa.


Tue, 31 Jan 2017 08:19:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp raises new funds to keep the show on the road at Lace ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) has raised approximately £1 mln through a placing of just over 25.4 mln new shares at 4p per share.


Each share comes with an attached warrant, exercisable at 1p at any time during the period commencing on 1 November 2017 and expiring on 30 June 2019.


The company’s shares remain suspended, however following the impact of poor weather conditions on operations at the Lace diamond mine in South Africa, and the placing is conditional upon admission becoming effective.


The company must also conclude a labour agreement with the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union that is on terms approved by the Business Rescue Practitioner and by the Board of DiamondCorp.


The company is also issuing just over 3 mln shares with attached warrants as settlement for professional fees and as satisfaction of certain outstanding indebtedness.




Mon, 23 Jan 2017 07:59:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp reports good progress on placing, extends close date ]]> Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has extended the closing date for a funding that will bring its diamond mine out of the South African equivalent of administration.

It announced last week it would raise £1mln through a placing at 4p as a first step in pulling the Lace mine out of Business Rescue.

The AIM-listed diamond miner said ‘very good progress’ was being made with the share issue but it had pushed the close date back to 20 January to help some interested parties.

A condition of the placing is that a labour agreement is reached with the AMCU union at Lace over back wages and staff reductions.

Fri, 20 Jan 2017 07:49:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp to raise £1mln as first step to rescue Lace mine ]]> South African-focused diamond miner Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) is to raise £1mln through a placing as a first step in pulling its Lace mine out of Business Rescue.

The shares will be issued at around 4p through a bookbuilding exercise by Panmure Gordon with a warrant attached that can be exercised at 1p.

A condition of the placing is that a labour agreement is reached with the AMCU union over back wages and staff reductions, without which the miner said it faces insolvency.

If it can conclude the placing, the next phase will start to ramp up operations at Lace again.

That will see more money raised and a new management team join the company

Diamondcorp is Lace’s largest creditor with £36mln owed through a subordinated loan.

 South Africa’s IDC is the next largest creditor with an £18mln project loan.

Diamondcorp shares will remain suspended until the Business Rescue process is concluded.

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 14:42:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp gets standstill deal while refinance talks continue ]]> DiamondCorpPLC (LON:DCP) has re-negotiated repayment terms with several lenders while it seeks a more long term financing solution.

The miner has placed the Lace diamond mine in South Africa in business rescue while the talks continue. 

Lace’s main lender, the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa, has agreed to a standstill until the completion of the business rescue process and it is trying to reach a similar agreement with South African and UK bondholders.

No decision will be reached before early January 2017.

Laurelton Diamonds, a lender to DiamondCorp itself, has agreed to roll up its interest until November and defer capital repayments until March 2018. 

Rasmala, meanwhile, has agreed to extend the £410,000 outstanding on its convertible facility until 30 March.

Mon, 19 Dec 2016 09:06:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp PLC sells major diamond parcel at tender ]]> Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has announced the sale of just over US$590,000 worth of diamonds recovered from its Lace mine in South Africa.

The company recovered the diamonds before it was placed into business administration last month following catastrophic weather conditions and flooding.

A total of 5,129.9 carats were delivered to Johannesburg for tender. After boiling losses, a total of 5,116.6 carats were prepared for sale.


The parcel comprised run of mine production with five stones larger than 10 carats. The largest stone was a 19.43 carat non-gem diamond.


Unfortunately, all the larger goods were either non-gem, or contained carbon inclusions or cracks which resulted in reduced valuations.


The price received amounted to US$115.46 per carat. This has meant that Diamondcorp’s dollar per carat average has now dropped this year to US$146 per carat, although the recovery of one large stone could easily swing that number up again.



Mon, 12 Dec 2016 08:06:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp starts business rescue process ]]> South Africa focused Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has begun business rescue proceedings following the recent rainfall and flooding at the Lace mine, and a board resolution to that effect was filed.

The firm's operating subsidiary LDM will appoint a business rescue practitioner in due course, it said.

As reported on Monday, shares were suspended after the mine was flooded by heavy rainfall following two storms.

The company said that more than 90 mm of rain fell in the space of an hour at Lace, equating to almost one third of the mine’s annual rainfall.

All personnel were successful evacuated, but pumping systems were overwhelmed, and an estimated 10,000 cubic metres of rain entered the mine via the open pit and access ramps.

Given that Diamondcorp’s financial position was already under pressure prior to these storms, shares were suspended.

Wed, 16 Nov 2016 07:57:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp’s shares suspended after storm hits Lace ]]> Shares in Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) have been suspended after its Lace mine in South Africa was flooded by heavy rainfall following two storms.

The company said that more than 90 mm of rain fell in the space of an hour at Lace, equating to almost one third of the mine’s annual rainfall.

All personnel were successful evacuated, but pumping systems were overwhelmed, and an estimated 10,000 cubic metres of rain entered the mine via the open pit and access ramps.

Diamondcorp reckons that this will take at least a week to clear, assuming there’s no more rain. More importantly, the long-hole drill rig, which was operating at the time, will need to be reassembled and its electrics rebuilt. This could take up to twelve weeks.

Given that Diamondcorp’s financial position was already under pressure prior to these storms, the shares have now been suspended. Talks with a business rescue practitioner in South Africa are now underway.


Mon, 14 Nov 2016 07:45:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp draws another £300,000 from Rasmala ]]> DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP) has drawn down a further £300,000 of its financing facility with Rasmala.

Rasmala, which owns 11.6% of Diamondcorp, agreed to provide £0.7mln in short-term funds last month through a Shariah-compliant secured convertible facility.

The £300,000 is the second tranche of that money.

Production at the Lace mine in South Africa is in line with expectations, with the balance of the 5,000 carats of diamond inventory, against which the facility is collateralised, expected to be processed today.

Output in the current month is on schedule to exceed 15,000 tonnes at a grade of 29 carats per hundred tonnes.

Earlier this week, Diamondcorp abandoned plans to sell Lace, saying the offers it received significantly undervalued the mine.

Wed, 09 Nov 2016 07:50:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp mine no longer up for sale ]]> Shares in Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) moved up by more than 20% in early trading in London after the company said that it would now not be selling its major asset, the Lace diamond mine in South Africa.

The company has run into some difficulty over the past couple of months as delays in ramping up production at Lace stretched working capital to the limit.

However, a £700,000 cash injection from the Rasmala Group, the company’s major shareholder, combined with some shuffling around of board positions, appears now to have brought some stability.

Diamondcorp said that such offers that it had had for Lace “significantly undervalued” the asset which, it says still contains diamonds worth in excess of US$1.5bn, notwithstanding the start-up delays.  

The company also noted that recent mining activities have been progressing well, as ground conditions and recoveries improve.

Mon, 07 Nov 2016 08:12:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp unveils further board changes ]]> Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) shares ticked 2% higher as it unveiled further board changes.

Director Chris Ellis has been formally appointed as independent interim non-exec chairman with immediate effect, the South Africa-focused miner said.

Meanwhile,  Neil McDougall becomes a non-executive director also with immediate effect.

Last week, Diamondcorp was the subject of a rescue package as existing 11.6% shareholder Rasmala put up £0.7mln through a Shariah-compliant secured convertible facility.

McDougall's appointment comes after the financing facility with Rasmala plc announced last week and is in addition to the continued role of Michael Toxvaerd as non-exec director of DiamondCorp and Rasmala.

McDougall is the finance chief at Rasmala and has many years' senior management experience in international environments.

Last week, chairman Euan Worthington resigned from the company but the firm said he would stay on until a replacement is found.

Also today, Diamondcorp said Hulme Scholes, currently a director, had resigned from the board, but shall continue to remain a director of DiamondCorp's operating subsidiary Lace Diamond Mines (Pty) Limited.

Diamondcorp shares added 1.96% to 2.6p on Thursday.

Thu, 27 Oct 2016 09:20:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp gets breathing space with £700,000 facility ]]> Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) shares picked up another 5% as investors digested last night’s rescue funding.

Existing 11.6% shareholder Rasmala is putting up £0.7mln through a Shariah-compliant secured convertible facility.

The money will satisfy an immediate need for £500,000 but DiamondCorp said it still requires an additional £2.5-3mln to get the Lace mine in South Africa into commercial production.

The Rasmala facility comprises two tranches and is secured against up to 5,000 carats of diamonds in inventory. The facility matures on 15 December.

Chairman Euan Worthington has resigned from the company’s board effective immediately, though he will stay on until a replacement is found.

Chris Ellis is to be appointed Interim Non-executive chairman, with the responsibility of overseeing the sale process announced earlier this week.

Shares in the diamond miner rose to 2.75p and have climbed by 30% this week.


--update for share price--

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 11:32:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp willing to listen to offers alongside funding talks ]]> Shares in Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) rallied strongly as it said it was willing to listen to offers for the company as part of plans for a refinancing.

Management has launched a strategic review alongside funding talks and said it would consider a merger or takeover proposal, saying expressions of interest had been received from “potential acquirers who are credible participants”.

Last week the South African diamond miner said it needed to raise £500,000 immediately after it was forced to shut down operations at the Lace mine following a fire in a dump truck.

A planned convertible debt issue was scrapped due to the subsequent weakness in the share price.

Today it said mining had now resumed and the financial impact of the four days lost had been minimised by a rescheduling of programme maintenance.

Lace was also ahead of its planned tonnage for the month at the time of the shutdown, Diamondcorp said.

Longer term, the miner needs around £2.5-3mln in additional finance to complete the ramp-up of operations at the mine.

Shares rose 53% to 3.14p.


-- adds detail, share price --

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 08:07:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp in talks for £500,000 rescue funding ]]> DiamondCorp Plc (LON:DCP) is in ‘accelerated’ talks with key shareholders and third parties over a £500,000 to secure the group’s financial future.

The owner of the Lace mine, which was suspended earlier this week, needs the cash injection to satisfy its immediate financial commitments.

It comes after separate funding talks with a third party came to an end, as the potential investor withdrew from discussions over a convertible debt facilty.

TIMELINE, Thursday: DiamondCorp considers options amid mine shut-down TIMELINE: Wednesday: DiamondCorp looks to raise further finance

DiamondCorp told investors it is likely that the company would be unable to continue trading as a going concern in the very near term if it can’t achieve a satisfactory resolution to its new funding talks.

It also cautioned: “No assurances can be given at this stage that the provision of the required immediate term funding will be entered into either in time or at all.

“Additionally, in the event that the company secures the required immediate term funding, there can be no certainty that the company will subsequently secure the necessary funding solutions to meet its longer term financial requirements as previously announced.”

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 08:03:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp considering options after mine shutdown ]]> DiamondCorp Plc (LON:DCP) has been ordered to shut down underground operations at its Lace mine after a fire in a dump truck.

No one was injured in the incident and management said it was "struggling to find logic" in the instruction that came  with the Section 54 notice  from the South African Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) and is considering its options including legal action.

The authority has also requested "external ventilation audit team to inspect the mine for smoke and other gases".

The firm reckons mining at the site in South Africa will be suspended for a least a week.

Shares sank 40% to 1.725p on the day.

Thu, 13 Oct 2016 12:48:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp looking to raise further finance amid issues with Lace ramp-up ]]> DiamondCorp Plc (LON:DCP) is looking to raise additional finance to fund it through to commercial production at its Lace mine in South Africa, where there have been continued issues with the ramp-up.

Due to various matters underground, the firm cannot drill enough metres in a month to generate more than around 15,000 tonnes of blasted kimberlite.

Output therefore for September to December will be an average of 14 to 15,000 tonnes per month and full commercial mine production of 30,000 tonnes per month is now expected to  be delayed until  around February next year.

On the plus side, grade, which was negatively affected in July and August, recovered in September, with recoveries averaging 25 cpht (carats per hundred tonnes) for the month against a budget of 29 cpht.

The AIM firm noted that the slower ramp up will mean either smaller diamond sales or a rescheduling of tender sales, each increasing pressure on cashflow.

It is in the process of finalising a convertible debt facility of around £500,000 required immediately and wants to raise additional equity and/or debt of between £2.5mln and £3mln in the short term to fund operations through to commercial production and positive cashflow.

It is also talking to its lender the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa on deferring capital payments due on its finance facility from the first half of 2017 to when positive cashflow is achieved from the first 100,000 tonnes per month mined.

Broker Shore Capital noted what it called a significant setback but drew on a number of positives.

Firstly, that the drill rig has been performing to nameplate capacity. Second, that dilution has reduced, so that recoveries are now averaging 25cpht (carats per hundred tonnes) against a budged 29cpht and from 18cpht in August this year.

Thirdly, the broker noted that a “pleasing number” of greater than 8 carat gems have been recovered, and DiamondCorp is “confident” that achieved diamond values will continue to be in line with its estimated US$164/ct base case.

Shares lost over 27% to stand at 3p each.


Wed, 12 Oct 2016 08:07:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp says prices held up in latest sales ]]> South African diamond miner DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) has generated almost US$800,000 from the sale of stones unearthed during the ramp-up period at its Lace mine.

Some 7,121 carats (cts) of diamonds were sold in the past three months to raise $782,455.

Of these, 4,863cts came from kimberlite mining and 2,258cts from tailings and fine diamonds.

A total of 5,716cts were sold by a competitive tender in Antwerp which was extended through until yesterday due to viewing interest.

Demand was good in all categories with prices in line with a previous sale in April except at the cheaper end, Diamondcorp said.

A further 1,406cts of kimberlite diamonds were sold this week by direct sales in Johannesburg and an 8.7 ct stone was sold earlier in the period for $5,700/ct.

Prices year to date for kimberlite stones average $169/ct, slightly ahead of the company's $164/ct base case.

The 2,258cts from tailings production and fine diamonds sold for a total of $96,149 representing $43/ct.

Shares rose 4% to 5.6p.

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 15:27:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp’s long-term value will sustain it through the short-term glitches ]]> “We’ve got a mine, we’ve got grade, we’ve got the carat value,” says Paul Loudon of Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP). “And we’ve got US$1.5bn of diamonds in the ground to be mined in the next few years.”

In a nutshell that’s the base case for Diamondcorp’s Lace mine, which commenced production earlier this year.

Lace has experienced its fair share of teething troubles, to the point where the market marked the shares down quite heavily on Tuesday after Diamondcorp said it had lost several days of production due to water issues.

But Loudon is not to be set off course by a couple of setbacks.

“If opening underground mines was easy everyone would be doing it,” he says. “If this had been an easy project we would never have been able to get our hands on it in the first place.”

And as it stands, although the production has been patchy, the quality of the stones has been highly encouraging.

“To date,” says Loudon, “the amount of kimberlite that’s been mined and processed in ramp-up is really only equivalent to one month’s worth of production of ore from the first block. But already we’ve had a 22 carat stone and lots of plus-eight carat stones. It’s only a matter of time before we pull in a 50 carat stone or a 90 carat stone. It’s a numbers game because we know they’re there.”

Indeed, if historical mining at Lace is anything to go by, there could be even larger stones in the ground there.

A tantalising prospect, and one which in the years to come should entice plenty of punters at the company’s tenders in Antwerp, which are now getting underway. The next  will be held in a couple of days’ time, and looks set to be well attended. The initial parcel will contain around 5,700 carats, while future tenders are likely to run at closer to 9,000 once the inventory builds up.

The income generated by those tenders will be welcome indeed, although due to the production shortfall it may now need to be supplemented by a short-term facility of some kind.

What form such a facility will take hasn’t yet been spelled out, and indeed was the subject of some speculation amongst London’s analyst community on Tuesday.

But Diamondcorp did raise £2m in June at 6p per share, so there is some cash to fall back on. And although the market did mark down Diamondcorp’s shares on news of the further lost production days, the current price of 5.38p is still within shouting distance of the price at which the most recent funding was done.

What’s more the mine itself still has plenty to offer. “It stands as one of the few new long-life diamond projects coming into production,” says Loudon.

Its large inventory still has huge attraction. And if it did yield up a stone of significant size, of 50 carats or upwards, then all talk of working capital facilities would quickly dissipate.



Thu, 15 Sep 2016 13:39:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp’s first Antwerp tender just days away ]]> The first tender of diamonds in Antwerp to be held by Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) is just four days away, with results expected on 20 September.

The company made the announcement on issuing financial results for the six months to June 2016 which showed losses at just under £250,000, as compared to £3.15 mln during the corresponding period a year ago.

The change is a significant sign of the progress the company has made in the intervening period, as the Lace diamond mine in South Africa is now fully operational.

Admittedly, there have been some teething problems along the way, as water ingress and low grades material from former workings hampered production.

But the company considers that such operational issues are “not unusual” during the ramp up phase of a mine.

Diamondcorp now has just over 7,000 carats in inventory, but by December expects to be offering parcels of 9,000 carats in each tender.


Tue, 13 Sep 2016 07:33:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Media files - DiamondCorp Plc gets back to business at Lace ]]> Wed, 10 Aug 2016 09:40:00 +0100 <![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp up to planned production rate at Lace mine ]]> Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has raised production at its Lace mine in South Africa to the planned rate of 30,000 tonnes per month.

Production at the mine was temporarily suspended in July after an explosives incident, but work on the 310 metres underground level in the Upper K4 Block at Lace restarted last month.

So far, the ore is averaging 31 carats per hundred tonnes (cpht), which is in line with forecasts, though Diamondcorp expects grades to improve as mining of the current block progresses.

Approximately 7,000 carats of diamonds recovered while tunnelling in UK4 will be sold in Antwerp at the end of August.

So far, diamonds recovered include a good proportion of clean sawable stones in all size fractions, including type IIa diamonds, said the company.

Monthly sales after August are expected to be around 9-12,000 carats per month.  

New mining fleet vehicles are working well, it added, with the older less reliable trucks now being refurbished.

A new finance director is being sought to oversee the existing finance team, while it is looking for new non-executive directors in each of South Africa and the UK to strengthen the board.

Panmure Gordon kept its target price unchanged at 11.5p and production forecasts intact as it sees the impact of the recent Lace suspension being recovered before the end of the year.

Shares rose 1% to 6.3p.


-- update adds broker line and share price --

Tue, 09 Aug 2016 07:46:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Underground mining resumes at DiamondCorp's Lace mine ]]> DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP), the Southern African diamond mining, development and exploration company, said underground mining has resumed at its Lace diamond mine.

The South Africa Department of Mineral Resources have permission for the resumption this afternoon.

Mining was suspended on 18 July on the order of the Department of Mines following an incident involving explosives in which a miner’s assistant was injured.

The Department of Mineral Resources ordered that all miners’ assistants handling explosives should undertake refresher safety training, which has now been completed.

Diamondcorp had previously indicated it expects to return to its targeted 30,000 tonnes a month rate of production in August and plans to make up the July shortfall by September.

Tue, 26 Jul 2016 15:19:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp temporarily suspends underground work at Lace ]]> Production at Diamondcorp Plc’s (LON:DCP) Lace mine in South Africa has been temporarily suspended on the order of the Department of Mines following an incident involving explosives in which a miner’s assistant was injured.

The Department of Mineral Resources has ordered that all miner’s assistants handling explosives should undertake refresher safety training.

This training commenced over the weekend and is due to be completed by 20 July.

At that point Diamondcorp expects to be allowed by the Department of Minereal Resources to resume production. In the meantime, tailings will be fed through the plant.

In an overall financial sense there ought not to be any material adverse effects to the company as a result of the stoppage, although the monthly ore throughput target of 30,000 tonnes will now be missed.

However, Diamondcorp expects to return to the 30,000 tonne rate of production in August and plans to make up the July shortfall by September.


Mon, 18 Jul 2016 07:44:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp receives extra £500,000 from broker option ]]> South African diamond miner Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) has bumped up the proceeds of its recent share placing by £0.5mln after the broker option was exercised.

Applicants for the additonal shares, including a number of directors, paid 6p per share, the same as the placing price. It took the total amount of money raised in the funding to £2mln.

House broker Panmure Gordon also reinstated research coverage with a ‘buy’ recommendation and new target price of 11.5p (14.5p).

Panmure has a value on the Lace mine operation of US$124.5mln, or 19p/share. The 11.5p price target is based on a blended average of net asset value and earnings. A discount rate of 12.6% acknowledges the risks before full and profitable production is reached, it adds.

Completion of the 1,500t underground ore silo marked a significant milestone in the company’s ability to achieve the stated 30,000tpm of kimberlite from the Upper K4 Block this month, while a recent sale of two run of mine parcels in South Africa at $189/ct for the kimberlite diamonds and $53/ct for tailings diamonds were also both ahead of forecasts..

Shares were 6.6p today.

Tue, 12 Jul 2016 12:21:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp raises £1.5 mln in new funds ]]> Diamondcorp Plc (LON:DCP) has raised £1.5 mln in new money at 6p per share, a small discount to the previous closing price of 6.375p.

The news comes at a time when raising capital in the equity markets at a reasonable price is once again a realistic possibility, and it was interesting to note Diamondcorp’s accompanying commentary which said that the directors had considered various other financing options but had found them all too expensive.

“The directors examined and pursued various options for raising additional capital without further recourse to shareholders,” the company said. “However, none of the options are available at reasonable cost or in a timely manner.”

The new money will be used for working capital purposes as Diamondcorp continues its ramp up of commercial production. The company had already announced, in April 2016, that it had experienced some operational difficulties with its existing mining fleet, and these continued into June.

However, Diamondcorp has now said that the final two dump trucks that had been undergoing refurbishment are now operational and that the project remains on track to deliver 30,000 tonnes per month of diamond-bearing kimberlite ore from the mine to the plant. 

Thu, 07 Jul 2016 10:39:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Media files - DiamondCorp chief “pleasantly surprised” by Lace Mine stones ]]> Wed, 15 Jun 2016 12:24:00 +0100 <![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp enjoys auction success as bottlenecks ease ]]> DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP) said its recent auction of stones was a success while operational bottlenecks appear to be close to easing.

The former first. The South Africa-focused company has raked in US$436,597 from diamond sales.

One batch from the tailings achieved US$53 a carat, though the stand-out figure was the US$189 a carat made from rough diamonds taken from the Lace Mine itself.

This represented a record and the number was well in excess of the US$164 a carat in the company’s base case resource statement and financial model relied upon.

The premium price was a reflection both of the increase in screen size and the recovery of a higher than forecast frequency of diamonds greater than four carats in size, the company said.

It remains on target to unearth 75,000 carats by the year-end with work ramping up on the UK4 Block, which is the focus of the underground operation at Lace.

The firm said it will monitor the number of rough diamonds from UK4 before deciding when to send the next batch for auction.

It expects monthly sales to begin at the end of September.

Operationally, things will be improved with the addition of two of three underground dump trucks acquired in April that have now been refurbished.

This last remaining “impediment” to hitting 30,000 tonnes per month run rate is the underground ore silo and tipping “arrangement”. This remains on target for hand over by the end of the month.

DCP reported high breakdown and repair costs associated with the existing fleet as the newly acquired machines have been refurbished.

“As a consequence, operational cashflow remains tight until full production has been achieved,” the group warned.

“The early cash received from the aforementioned diamond sales will assist in this regard.”

Broker Shore Capital noted the average price achieved from the run-of-mine (ROM) kimberlite diamonds sale was higher than previous sales.

Revenues generated from these sales are “proving very handy” as it expects operational cash flow is expected to remain “tight” until full production is achieved, added the broker.

Shares dropped 0.5p to 6.85p.

-- updates for line from broker--

Tue, 14 Jun 2016 08:13:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp sees signs of recovery in the diamond market ]]> Diamond producer DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP) said demand and prices for rough and polished stones have been improving with signs that the cycle has bottomed.

The company, which owns 74% of the Lace mine in South Africa, joined the ranks of diamond producers this year and sold its first consignment of diamonds in April, so the upturn in the diamond market is fortuitous.

Its results for 2015, however, cover a period when the company was not earning revenue, so it is no surprise that the company made a loss before tax, of £2.41mln, though this was an improvement on 2014's loss of £3.25mln.

At the end of 2015, total assets had risen to £35mln from £32.41mln at the end of 2014, while a cash on hand stood at £1.78mln, down from £2.60mln a year earlier. The company received a cash infusion of £2.06mln in January from the second tranche of a placing.

A major advance during 2015 was the final installation and commissioning of the underground conveyor at Lace, which is now bringing kimberlite and development waste to the surface without the need for excessively long haul distances for the company's heavy dump trucks.

The company also completed the dams and water recovery systems on site, which has alleviated concerns about water availability for processing the kimberlite ore. This is important after low annual rainfall in recent years, noted chairman Euan Worthington.

“Early indications in 2016 are that there has been some stabilisation in prices for polished stones as inventories are being drawn down. This is feeding through to better prices for rough diamonds and signs that the cycle has bottomed,” Worthington suggested.

“ As we ramp up to full production, management is focused on keeping all costs minimised and the budget within existing cash resources, whilst cognisant of remaining both on schedule and operating within very high safety levels,” Worthington added.

Given the results covered the pre-revenue era of DiamondCorp, Shore Capital said the numbers were “essentially academic”, and of more significance were the results from the diamond sale in Antwerp last month.

“According to DiamondCorp, all Lace diamonds that have been beneficiated have improved in colour, which we find encouraging as this implies potential for significant additional value. As of April 2016, DiamondCorp was on-schedule to produce more than 75kct [thousands of carats] from kimberlite in 2016, and >125kct in 2017,” Shore said.

Panmure Gordon said the financial report was in line with expectations. “The main message is that management remains confident that progress towards commercialisation in July remains on track and the funding position, albeit tight, looks to be sufficient ahead of the planned June auction and the ramp-up to 30,000tpm [tonnes per month] from July,” Panmure's Kieron Hodgson.

“The cash position at year end was £1.78mln with an additional £2.06mln gross received in Jan 2016 from the second tranche of the December 15 placement. US$1.09mln was generated from the first tender at the end of March and circa US$1mln was spent on new equipment in mid-April,” Hodgson recounted.

“Taking the numbers into account we recently highlighted the limited liquidity under our modelling; however, management confirms that whilst the position will be tight, sufficient liquidity is expected to be available to see the company into commercialisation with the ramp-up in July. Between now and the next tender (expected in June) is the tightest time in our modelling and this ambiguity is being reflected in the share price in our view,” Hodgson said.

Panmure Gordon rates the shares a 'buy' and has a target price of 14.5p. The shares rose 0.7% to 6.92p on the results.



Wed, 04 May 2016 08:18:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp makes sparkling return from cut diamonds ]]> DiamondCorp PLC (LON:DCP) revealed the upside to cutting, polishing and selling its own high quality stones as it updated on progress at the Lace Mine in South Africa, which involved spending US$1mln on underground equipment.

The firm has what’s called a beneficiation joint venture, which took a 22.1 carat diamond and split it into two - a 7.2-carat emerald-cut diamond and a 0.9-carat pear-shaped stone.

They sold for US$261,361 and DiamondCorp’s half share of the profit was US$71,979.

“This is an early indication of the significant additional value which can be created through beneficiating special and exceptional quality diamonds from Lace and gives management insight into how the stones perform when they are cut and polished,” said chief executive Paul Louden.

Separately, the miner said it has addressed breakdown issues that have hampered output by buying in four trucks, two loaders and two single drill rigs. The price of the used vehicles, at US$1mln, is around a quarter of the cost of buying new.

The additions to the fleet will allow DCP push up output from the Lace’s Upper K4 Block to 30,000 tonnes per month.

The company is slated to produce 75,000 carats this year and 125,000 next.

In line with the production targets outlined for 2016 and 2017 by the company, Panmure Gordon analysts reviewed estimates and reduced the target price from 15.7p to 14.5p. 

"We believe that should Lace production consistently improve with manufacturing, then the value attributed to the rough prices will be well underpinned," said the broker.

Shares dipped 3% to 7.75p.


Tue, 19 Apr 2016 07:55:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp PLC "very pleased" with diamond demand ]]> Shares in Diamondcorp PLC (LON:DCP) sparkled after the company reported good demand for diamonds extracted from its Lace mine in South Africa.

In all, a Total of 8,646 carats of diamonds were sold in the first quarter of 2016, with the company experiencing good demand for its produce in all size categories.

All lots offered for sale were sold, the company revealed.

The diamond producer said 6,247 carats of those sold were diamonds greater than 1.25 mm in diameter, which were recovered from kimberlite development and production ramp-up. These diamonds are representative of the plant in its current production configuration, and were sold for a Total of US$1.09 million, representing an average of $175 per carat.

“For context, an average value of US$164/ct was forecast for the size frequency distribution achieved with a 1.25mm bottom screen size (excluding ‘special stones’),” noted Yuen Low, an analyst at Shore Capital.

Two special stones – a 22.11 carat diamond (previously reported) and a 1,08 carat Type II purple stone – were sold, at $5,000 and $6,363 per carat, respectively.

“Assuming the US$175/ct figure excludes the two special stones, a slightly higher per-carat price was achieved than expected,” Low opined.

Meanwhile, 2,401 carats were from tailings production and fine diamonds less than 1.25 mm in diameter recovered during bulk testing when the plant was configured with finer bottom screens. These diamonds sold for about $460,000, yielding $19 per carat.

Production from Lace in the first three months of 2016 comprised: 6,324 tonnes of K4 kimberlite at an average recovered grade of 36 carats per hundred tonnes (cpht); 8,327 tonnes of K6 kimberlite from ventilation tunnel development at average recovered grade of eight cpht; and 18,307 tonnes of tailings at an average recovered grade of five cpht. Total diamonds recovered for the period were 3,438 carats.

Blasting of the slot for the first production trough in the Upper K4 Block at Lace, together with a 1,500 tonne underground ore pass and silo, is on track for production to achieve 30,000 tonnes of kimberlite mining per month from July onwards.

'We are extremely pleased with the level of demand shown for the Lace production and the prices we achieved in all size categories. Overall sentiment in the diamond market remains relatively positive compared to the end of 2015, and the price increases seen in January are being maintained,” said Paul Loudon, chief executive officer of Diamondcorp.

Shares in Diamondcorp raced to 8.42p from 7.75p overnight, before ebbing to 8.15p, up 5,2% on the day.

Tue, 05 Apr 2016 10:15:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp sheds more on Lace's vital statistics - UPDATE ]]> New studies on DiamondCorp's  (LON:DCP) 74% owned Lace Mine in South Africa have updated resource figures for its main kimberlite pipe.

The total resource is now estimated at 38.48 million tonnes down to the 920 metre level.

That's 16% more than the 33.12 million tonnes estimated in March 2012 but that was only down to 855metres.

Notably, the resource remains open at depth.

Estimated grades have now been based on the production plant using a 1.25mm screen (to sift material), compared to 1.00 mm screens previously.

This does mean that grade will be significantly lower, but the carat value will be higher as the smallest diamonds no longer being recovered also have the lowest value.

The recoverable diamonds from this resource at the increased bottom screen size of 1.25 mm is estimated at 9.39 million carats, compared to 13.39 million carats, at 1.00 mm screen size.

Within the overall resource, 2.21 million tonnes of the UK4 Block has been classified as a reserve between the 230 and 370m levels.

This whole block could be mined for 60 months at a rate of 35,000 tonnes per month and generate a positive NPV of R133.3 million (US$8.9 million) and a robust IRR of 59%, the miner said.

DiamondCorp plans to mine the high-grade K4 kimberlite within this reserve first while the first block cave is established on the 500m level (being outside of the current mineral reserve estimate).

"There may well be opportunities to optimize the mine plan as more K4 is found to be present as the mine progresses. When block caving progresses, any unmined portions of this reserve would then be extracted in subsequent caves," it added.

The mine is now in operation and full production rates of 30,000 tonnes per month throughput are likely to be reached in July of this year, the firm has said previously.

Broker Panmure repeated a 'buy' on the stock and targets 15.7p.

"The report, we believe, provides reassurance to investors ahead of commercial production being announced in 2016," said analyst Kieron Hodgson.

"With a notable improvement in valuation offsetting the well flagged grade reduction, associated with the bottom cut off change to 1.25mm, we believe future sales updates can provide a catalyst for further gains."

The broker now models ROM (run-of-mine) production at $164/ct compared to $135/ct and ascribes no value for any high value special goods such as the 22ct high-quality diamond, recently placed into partnership, and the coloured goods Lace is known to produce.

Hodgson also highlights that market demand continues to show signs of improvement and is being supported by restocking efforts following the recent end of year retail period.

DiamondCorp shares eased 1.43% to 8.625p.

Wed, 02 Mar 2016 08:35:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp appoints downstream diamond industry specialist as director ]]> Chris Ellis has been hired as an independent non-exec director with effect from today at DiamondCorp (LON:DCP), the firm said.

It comes after Nick Allen has announced his retirement as a non-exec director.

With Paul Loudon, diamond industry expert Allen was a founding director of DiamondCorp in March 2005. 

Ellis has had an investment banking career spanning over 20 years in London and the US and in the last decade he was worked around all aspects of the diamond supply chain, representing and advising industry banks, cutters and polishers, jewellery manufacturers and retailers.

DiamondCorp chairman Euan Worthington said: "I am very sad that Nick is retiring from the board and we thank him for his wise counsel and valuable support over the past decade.

"We are pleased that Chris Ellis has accepted our invitation to join the board of DiamondCorp. His knowledge of the downstream diamond industry and associated bankers will help replace the skills we have lost with Nick's retirement."

Mon, 01 Feb 2016 08:20:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp's underground ramp-up on track ]]> ----ADDS BROKER COMMENT AND SHARE PRICE---

DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) shares rose as it said ramp up to full production from the Upper K4 (UK4) Block is on track to achieve 30,000 tonnes per month by July this year and it is hoping for a new resource statement at its Lace mine in South Africa in the next few weeks.

The 400 tonne per hour conveyor belt was fired up in November and is operating to design capacity, the group said.

Mining has restarted after a two week Christmas shut-down and remains on target to achieve that commercial production rate.

Stones recovered from initial processing are meeting expectations in terms of colour and quality, including three stones larger than 10 carats, the largest of which was a 22.11 carat H coloured stone, the miner added.

This was sold to the firm's beneficiation joint venture for US$5,000 per carat with a view to recovering an 8 carat emerald cut stone after cutting and polishing.

In addition, last week, the firm prepared to export 3,577 carats of diamonds, which were recovered from bulk testing activities in the second half of 2015.

They will be sorted in Antwerp ahead of the commencement of diamond sales in the next few months. To date, 7,449 carats have been produced towards the first sale.

"Diamond market sentiment has started 2016 in a reasonably positive mood as supply management by the major producers appears to have resulted in renewed demand for rough diamonds in certain size categories," the firm added.

Following the news, broker Panmure repeated a 'buy' on the shares and targets a price of 15.7p.   It notes that the recovery of  three stones larger than 10 carats from initial processing offered an encouraging indication of future recoveries.    "Total recoveries to date total 7,449cts and we expect the company to commence regular sales in the coming months," said analyst Kieron Hodgson.   One negative, it notes, is ongoing delays to the company’s resource statement.    "All work required of DiamondCorp has been completed but publication is reliant on third parties, outside of managements control," noted the analyst.   SP Angel added that the firm appeared to be on track with mining operations but notes that although the company detects a positive sentiment in the rough diamond market it is adopting a cautious stance as to whether this will be sustained.   Shares added 6% to stand at 6.625p in early deals. ]]>
Tue, 26 Jan 2016 08:32:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp hails 'historic' landmark for it Lace Mine ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) said it has begun the ramp up towards commercial production from the Upper K4 (UK4) Block of the company’s Lace Mine in South Africa’s Free State.

It is significant milestone for the company, which has thus far has extracted diamonds from tailings or from the material brought to surface during mine development.

Output from UK4 is scheduled to be 4,000 tonnes of ore per month from January to March next year, rising to 15,000 tonnes from April to June, before hitting a steady-state 30,000 tonnes a month thereafter.

Chief executive Paul Louden said: "Today is an historic day for the Lace mine as it marks the start of the ramp up towards commercial production from underground at Lace for the first time since October 1930.”

Wed, 16 Dec 2015 07:17:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp completes £4mln placing ahead of Lace ramp-up ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) raised the full £4mln from its placing on Thursday at a price of 6p per share.

The placing price concluded at an 18% discount to the price on Wednesday and the issue will now be completed in two tranches with the second tranche to follow a vote at the annual general meeting (AGM) on 7 January.

Directors Paul Loudon, Euan Worthington and Jonathan Willis-Richards together subscribed for 1.83mln shares.

The money has been earmarked to ramp up production at the Lace diamond mine in South Africa.

DiamondCorp’s plan now is to increase monthly production of higher grade kimberlite to 30,000 tonnes by next July after which it will become cash flow positive.

By 2018, it expects to be processing one million tonnes of kimberlite annually.

Fri, 04 Dec 2015 07:59:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp amends IDC loan terms, launches £4mln placing ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) has agreed a debt rescheduling with main lender IDC and will launch a placing to raise a further £4mln.

Shares will be sold through a book build process undertaken by Panmure Gordon with the money earmarked to ramp up production at the Lace diamond mine in South Africa.

Last month, DiamondCorp warned that slower than expected progress with the development at Lace had affected its cash flow projections.

The plan now is increase production of higher grade K4 zone material to 30,000 tonnes by next July.

The miner expects to be cash flow positive from that point and by 2018 be processing one million tonnes of kimberlite.

At that point, DiamondCorp expects to have recovered approximately 466,000 carats of diamonds, generating net cash flow of about R362mln (£17mln).

The arrangements with IDC, its empowerment partner, will see DiamondCorp pay higher interest on its loan, which interest and principal combined will rise to R311mln (£14.4mln) with first repayments pushed back a year until February 2017.

Thu, 03 Dec 2015 07:52:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp back on track ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) said tunnelling into higher grade diamond-bearing kimberlite ore is progressing at originally planned rates following the installation of steel arches that provide a protective canopy.

Resumption of development work on the 290m level began two-weeks earlier than envisaged.

This and the full installation of a conveyor belt used to transport the material for processing have overcome many of the operational roadblocks the firm has faced in recent weeks and months and that have led to delays.

 "I am very pleased that these challenges have been met without any injuries to our workforce or damage to our equipment," said chief executive Paul Loudon.

Fri, 20 Nov 2015 07:31:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Media files - DiamondCorp boss confident after conveyor belt boost ]]> Thu, 12 Nov 2015 11:00:00 +0000 <![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp chief: Newly commissioned conveyor belt a 'game changer' ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) said the conveyor belt at its Lace mine in South Africa had been installed.

The commissioning of the underground system, which can lug around 400 tonnes of ore an hour, will be a ‘game changer’, according to chief executive Paul Loudon.

"Not only does the conveyor belt provide Lace with the ability to increase development rates, the cost of future development will decrease in the absence of the need for trucks for waste hauling as the underground loaders will now empty their buckets directly onto the end of the conveyor belt which keeps getting extended as the development goes deeper,” he explained.

“Until block cave production commences, the use of trucks will be confined to hauling kimberlite from the Upper K4 Block production level to the tipping point on the conveyor belt."

The belt is able to carry double the current capacity of the processing plant, which gives management plenty of headroom to increase underground mining.

Separately, DiamondCorp said it was unaffected by the drought conditions in South Africa.

Thu, 12 Nov 2015 07:18:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp sanguine despite four-month delay ]]> There was a small dip in the share price of Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) after news that a four month delay to development work at the Lace mine in South Africa’s Free State is now likely.

That the shares didn’t fall more heavily is down to two separate, but related factors.

The first is that, actually, what has been achieved at Lace over the past year or so is really quite considerable, and the market knows that in the start-up of any mine there are bound to be one or two glitches.

In the case of Lace, the underground operators encountered unstable ground conditions that required the installation of steel arches to project employees and expensive drilling equipment from potential falls of ground.

The installation of those arches is now complete, but the work has put back preparations for the first major rock-blast by about four months.

This in turn could lead to pressure on the cash flow of the Lace operating subsidiary as a first debt payment to the South African development bank the Industrial Development Corporation, or IDC, is due in January.

However, although not exactly delighted about the delay, Diamondcorp’s Paul Loudon is relatively sanguine about the consequences.

For a start, he’s conscious of the immense progress that has been made at the project over the past year or so - as financing has been put in place, economic studies finalised, wage negotiations completed, plant installed, and other development work undertaken.

“We’ve been building it one block at a time,” he says. “We’re progressively de-risking this project.”

The latest issue with the ground conditions is problematic, but more about timing than anything else.

Which brings us on to the IDC and that pending debt repayment.

But here, Loudon is relatively sanguine too.

The official Diamondcorp release states that discussions with the company’s primary lenders and black economic empowerment partners have been “positive” and that “a formal request to continue interest roll-up of the Industrial Development Corporation loan until positive cash flow has been achieved has been lodged.”

Loudon is fairly comfortable that the IDC will be accommodating in respect of this request, not least because of Diamondcorp’s track record of job creation at Lace, and the likelihood that it will create more.

“We undertook to create 230 jobs,” he says. “It’s now at 260, and we’ll have 300 when the mine is up and running.”

And after all, what we’re talking about here is a four month delay for a problem that’s already been rectified, not a major setback to the overall plan.

Indeed, on that score, things are actually improving. Operationally, the ongoing installation of the conveyors will allow for a tenfold increase in the amount of rock the company can move to the surface.

Further out, a new waste management system that will allow for the sorting out of unwanted material at an earlier stage in processing could have a significant impact on the net present value of Lace.

The plan as it stands is to mine down to the 855 level over a period of 25 years. The new system could allow that mining to be completed in just 17 years, bringing returns forward significantly.

So watch for more news on that soon, as well as news on debt payments and the initiation of mining.

It’ll be a busy period for Diamondcorp, but it shouldn’t be too long now before it produces the first of many, many diamonds mined from underground.

Tue, 03 Nov 2015 11:46:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - DiamondCorp holds positive talks after teething problems at Lace mine ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP), which is on the verge of reviving the fortunes of the Lace mine in South Africa, said talks with lenders and partners had been ‘positive’ after it announced some teething problems in the ramp up to full production.

Challenging conditions have put back the blasting of what’s called a slot drive that will give it access to the initial diamond-bearing material.

The upshot is a delay to the point Lace becomes cash flow positive.

This has required talks with its main lender, the Industrial Development Corporation, and its black empowerment partner.

The plan is to roll up early interest payments into the loan until DiamondCorp hits that all-important point at which it is generating sufficient funds to service the loan.

“The discussions have been positive and a formal request to continue interest roll-up of the Industrial Development Corporation loan until positive cashflow is achieved has been lodged,” the company said in a statement.

“Management do not expect any issues with respect to being granted this request.”

Much of the remainder of the statement was about progress rather than problems.

It is now into high grade diamond-bearing kimberlite in the Upper K4 block; meanwhile the conveyor belt is full installed and 80% commissioned.

At the same time final drilling and microdiamond work requested by the company's geological consultants to complete the resource statement update is underway. This will provide greater levels of confidence in the resource estimate and will be completed before year end.

Because of the ‘challenges’ DCP has encountered thus far, development costs to date are averaging R49,993 per metre against a budget of R38,280 per metre.  But the commissioning of the conveyors will help reduce development costs as trucks will no longer be used in the process.

Tue, 03 Nov 2015 08:06:00 +0000
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp commissions conveyor belt at Lace ]]> DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) has commissioned the underground conveyor belt at its lace mine in South Africa.

The belt has a capacity of 400 tonnes per hour, but due to water constraints the mining rate at Lace is 1,200,000 tonnes per annum or 200 tonne per hour.

From November, all future kimberlite and development waste will be conveyed to the surface rather than carried by trucks.

"This will result in a significant reduction in the cost per tonne to load and haul rock," said Paul Loudon, DiamondCorp’s chief executive, who added the commissioning of the conveyor belt was a milestone for the development.

Efforts now have turned to reducing water consumption, he added, using a de-grit circuit, X-rays and waste sorting technology. 

A de-grit circuit has already been installed and commissioned in the plant.

The removal of the sand fraction will reduce water consumption in the processing plant by 50%.

In combination, the de-grit circuit and waste sorting technology may enable Lace to be mined at a significantly faster rate than currently planned.

Small diamonds that will be lost in the sand are seen as only marginally economic, while a reduction in the recovered grade per tonne of diamonds will be offset by a proportional increase in the dollar per carat and lower processing costs, DiamondCorp said. 

On sales, because progress at Lace has been slower than anticipated the company will wait until it has more diamonds before selling them.

To date, 4,250 carats have been recovered from bulk testing, less than planned due to difficult ground conditions, and the company said it will wait until its gets at least 10,000 carats as larger parcels attract better prices.

An independent valuation in Antwerp has estimated diamond sales should average between US$140 and $160 per carat at a 1.00mm cut off and between $160 and $200 per carat at a 1.25mm bottom screen size. This did not include the potential for very large stones to be uncovered.

MPH Consulting in Toronto is working on an updated resource statement and has requested two additional microdiamond samples and one more 180m underground delineation core drill hole. 

Tue, 13 Oct 2015 07:43:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp progressing towards first diamond sale next month ]]> Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) is on schedule to complete its first diamond sale next month.

Installation of safety measures for the underground conveyor belt system at its Lace mine is expected to be completed during September ahead of the ramp up in commercial production during the fourth quarter of this year.

The company's first diamond sale is now set for October, when the miner has produced a sufficient parcel of kimberlite diamonds.

The company noted, in its results for the six months to 30 June, that processing of kimberlite from development at its Lace mine continues to return encouraging results in terms of diamond size frequency and quality.

Cash at 30 June was £1.94mln, however, after the period ended, a further £2.1mln was raised from a heavily oversubscribed open offer.

Interim pre-tax losses widened slightly to £3.1mln from £2.7mln.

Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:56:00 +0100
<![CDATA[Media files - DiamondCorp CEO sees plenty of share price upside ahead ]]> Fri, 31 Jul 2015 11:26:00 +0100 <![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp pleased with stone quality at Lace ]]> Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) is about on schedule to get its Lace mine in South Africa into production in the next few months.

Tunnel excavation underground has gone slower than expected due to additional safety and support work near old workings, which has pushed the timetable back four weeks.

Diamondcorp is tunnelling to open up the UK4 block and has started to process ore recovered from both its development (K6) and production level (K4) workings.

It has already uncovered one Type IIa white diamond.

Today it said that generally recoveries from the K4 kimberlite are exceeding expectations for overall quality, adding it was confident that UK4’s operating margins will exceed 70% as previously predicted.

An updated resource estimate will be carried out when there is sufficient material recovered, it added.

Development costs averaged R44,193/m against a budget of R37,000/m due to the tunnelling delays but some of this was clawed back by lower costs for the underground mining fleet.

A placing and open offer raised £5.27mln earlier this month, which is sufficient to get commercial production underway said the company.

Fri, 31 Jul 2015 07:42:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - UPDATE - DiamondCorp brings in full £5.27mln under open offer and placing ]]> ---adds broker comment and share price---

South Africa-focused miner DiamondCorp (LON:DCP) revealed it had raised the maximum under its open offer and placing at £5.27 million to advance the economics of the Lace mine.

The open offer followed a placing last month, which raised just short of £3.2mln priced at 10p.

The offer was at the same price and applications were received for 64% of the shares on offer. Around a further 7.5mln were available under an "excess application facility" and applications were received representing 4.9 times the excess shares available.

Euan Worthington, DiamondCorp chairman, told investors: "The board is very pleased at the high level of over-subscription for the open offer and that the majority of shareholders have been able to participate on the same terms as the recent placing to institutions. We thank shareholders for their continuing support and look forward to an exciting future"

DiamondCorp went ahead with the placing after deciding to end a US$7mln royalty financing deal with South African group Acrux.

Bulk sampling is currently underway at the Lace mine ahead of a ramp-up to full production.

The money raised from the placing and offer will be used to fund the £1.8-2.8mln working capital shortfall to bring Lace into production in H2 this year; the purchase of two dump trucks and the deposit on a high-volume optical and x-ray waste sorter to reduce the volume of internal waste rock from kimberlite ore prior to processing.

This equipment has the potential to significantly reduce plant water and electricity consumption and increase processing rates, DiamondCorp has said.

The fundraise news was met positively by analysts in the City.

Investec said: “While only a modest raising, the strong over-subscription indicates that there is still good support for companies and sectors that deserve it.”

Shore Capital noted the diamond firm  had received an "overwhelming" number of applications under the excess facility, such that those applying for excess shares could only be allotted around 20.4% of the shares they had applied for.

"...following one of best-supported open offers in recent years; we believe Lace to be funded to commercial production in H2 2015," said analyst Yuen Low in a note.

Panmure repeated a 'buy' but lowered the target slightly to 23p from 25p.

It says the dilution caused by issuing new shares slightly outweighed the positive value impact of removing the previously planned 3% royalty on diamond sales and accordingly, its discounted cash flow valuation now equates to 30p - not 34p.

The broker also noted that this valuation does not take into account the potential price upside from the recovery of Type IIa diamonds, which have recently been discovered,  at Lace.

Shares were 1.12% lower at 11p each at the time of writing.

Mon, 06 Jul 2015 14:01:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp starts ball rolling on £2mln open offer ]]> South Africa-focused miner Diamondcorp (LON:DCP) kicked off an open offer to raise up to an additional £2mln.

The offer follows a placing to raise just short of £3.2mln earlier this month and will priced at the same price of 10p per share.

Diamondcorp went ahead with the placing after deciding to end a royalty financing deal with South African group Acrux.

Bulk sampling is currently underway at the Lace mine ahead of a ramp-up to full production.

The money raised from the offer will fund the purchase of two dump trucks and the deposit on a high-volume optical and x-ray waste sorter to reduce the volume of internal waste rock from kimberlite ore prior to processing.

This equipment has the potential to significantly reduce plant water and electricity consumption and increase processing rates, Diamondcorp said.



Wed, 17 Jun 2015 07:44:00 +0100
<![CDATA[News - Diamondcorp ditches royalty finance plan as investors back Lace development with hard cash ]]> In a sign of the growing confidence in its Lace mine development, DiamondCorp (LON:DCP)  has replaced its proposed royalty financing package with Acrux Resources by a straightforward call on shareholders.

The South African miner has raised £3.18mln through an oversubscribed placing at 10p with institutions and private investors. The price was a 10% discount to the close yesterday.

In addition, DiamondCorp intends to raise up to a further £2mln through an open offer to existing shareholders.

The miner said the progress on bulk sampling at Lace and the recent discovery of a sizeable Type IIa stone had persuaded it not to go ahead with Acrux’s royalty financing facility.

Some brokers had also not been happy with the royalty plan. Northland calculated Acrux could receive around US$56mln in royalties for its US$7mln up-front loan assuming a price of US$160 per carat.

The net proceeds of the placing will be sufficient to ramp up to commercial production, which is anticipated in the second half of 2015, leading to the commencement of positive cash flow anticipated by the end of 2015.

Any money raised by the open offer would be used further to enhance the working capital position and mine economics.

Paul Loudon, DiamondCorp’s chief executive, said: "I am delighted with the strong support we have received for the company by existing and new shareholders and I look forward to updating the market on our operational developments as we ramp up to commercial production at the Lace Mine."

Fri, 05 Jun 2015 08:24:00 +0100