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Regency Mines to conduct 'strategic review' of portfolio after challenging first half

The group has been working with lenders to restructure its debt and expects to meet its immediate funding requirements
In January, the group exercised its option to buy a 50% stake in a North American vanadium project

Regency Mines PLC (LON:RGM) has admitted the first half was “exceptionally disruptive” but the company is taking action to address its challenges and remains positive about the outlook.  

The miner said it plans to conduct a strategic review of its portfolio and will announce the outcome in due course.

The group has been engaged with lenders to restructure its debt and has requested a hold period at least six months on shares that were recently issued to meet its lending obligations.

READ: Regency Mines in need of urgent funding as coal operations stall

Following talks with stakeholders, Regency expects to meet its immediate funding requirements.

A general meeting will be held on April 1 to approve proposed measures.

“While the past several months have been an exceptionally disruptive period in the company's history, the board is currently exploring strengthening the management team with a coal industry expert who has expressed a willingness to contribute to the company's pathway forward,” Regency said.

“The board remains confident that the company retains a solid foundation of projects and assets from its interests in metallurgical coal production in the United States to its Nickel/Cobalt JORC resource at Mambare in Papua New Guinea to its interests in EsTeq, which encompass battery metals and energy storage.”

In the six months to December 31, Regency made a loss before tax of £1.7bn, compared to a profit before tax of £421,297 a year ago, largely due to losses made on Mining Equity Trust, a joint venture with Legacy Hill Resources to explore metallurgical coal assets in the US.

Production from the MET venture in Virginia began in August. Initial output was lower than expected but Regency has seen production pick up since the start of 2019 and the operator believes operations have been stabilised.

In Papua New Guinea, there was not enough capital to progress operations during the period but an application for the renewal of the EL1390 exploration licenses were submitted to authorities in early March and a Warden's Hearing is scheduled for late April.

“A successful renewal of these licenses will cover the period June 2019 to June 2021, and the joint venture partners have proposed a work plan to focus on ground penetrating radar activities, upgrading the resource to the current 2012 JORC code, and studying opportunities to progress a direct shipping ore operation at the project,” Regency said.

The group said it has made “solid advancements” on its subsidiary EsTeq's investment in Allied Energy Services, where the “future for energy storage and grid services in the UK appears particularly robust”. 

Since the end of the period, the group has exercised its option to buy a 50% stake in a North American vanadium project from Breakaway Exploration Management Inc.

READ: Regency Mines exercises option to acquire 50% of North American vanadium project

Historic exploration has outlined numerous broad zones of strongly anomalous vanadium.  Drill testing of the targets, although limited to date, identified multiple vanadium-bearing intervals.

Regency will be the operator of the project.

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Regency Mines PLC Timeline

June 18 2019

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