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Proactive weekly mining highlights: Sirius Minerals, Rambler Metals, W Resources…

A look back at some of the top stories this week from London’s mining juniors…

woodsmith mine
Sirius Minerals’ US$3bn financing is drawing closer

Sirius Minerals PLC (LON:SXX) has made it onto Liberum’s list of most preferred stocks for the year ahead.

Work on the initial construction of its Woodsmith polyhalite mine is already underway and Sirius is now working with a global financial institution to close its US$3bn stage 2 financing package.

That is expected to complete by the end of this month (April) and will be used to fund the next stage of works at Woodsmith. Once it does close, Liberum believes it will trigger a re-rating of the stock.

“Successful closure would eliminate what, in our view, is the largest component driving the current discount to net present value – financing risk,” said Liberum in a note to clients.

Pure Gold Mining Inc (CVE:PGM) expects to start trading on the main market of the London Stock Exchange in the second quarter of this year, ahead of its transition to a producer from a developer.

The company is advancing its Madsen project in the prolific Red Lake district of Northwestern Ontario, Canada.

"The London market is known for its deep knowledge of the mining sector and as an investment destination for institutional capital from around the world," said Darin Labrenz, the president and CEO of Pure Gold.

Chrome producer Afarak Group PLC ( LON:AFRK) told shareholders it has regrouped after a difficult year in 2018.

Afarak had particular problems with its Mogale plant, which was affected by technical problems including stoppages and low-quality ore.

Later in the week, the company confirmed it is to take full control of its South African mines through a buy-out of its partner in the Synergy Africa joint venture.

Bacanora Lithium PLC (LON:BCN) remains in talks with the State General Reserve Fund of Oman (SGRF) over a US$65mln strategic investment and offtake for the Sonora lithium project in Mexico.

Exploration work undertaken by Scotgold Resources LTD (LON:SGZ) has identified possible extensions to the orebody at the Cononish mine in Scotland, news of which helped send its shares higher on Monday.

These previously unidentified anomalies are associated with off-setting faults and structure in the immediate vicinity and will guide the future drilling campaigns designed to increase the Cononish JORC compliant mineral resource.

W Resources PLC (LON:WRES) hit high-grade intersections from recent diamond core and reverse circulation drilling at the Régua mine development in Northern Portugal.

The company has completed over 2.73 kilometres of drilling comprising 916 metres of diamond core drilling, plus 1,809 metres of RC drilling.

The results confirm thick higher-grade zones closer to the planned mine portals, including 29 metres at 0.75% tungsten trioxide (WO3) and six metres at 0.43% WO3.

Richland Resources Ltd (LON:RLD) has extended its £400,000 secured convertible loan facility to 30 April 2019 and increased the amount available for drawdown by US$150,000.

On 28 September 2018, Richland announced that it was in discussions with potential strategic investors to procure sufficient funding to enable the recommencement of production at the Capricorn sapphire mine.

As an alternative, the company stated it would also consider a sale of Capricorn. The company remains in advanced discussions with one party in particular, with regards to the potential sale of the entire project.

BlueRock Diamonds PLC (LON:BRD) produced 42,409 tonnes of ore from its Kareevlei diamond mine in the Kimberley region of South Africa during the first quarter of 2019.

During the period the company sold 1,847 carats sold, a year-on-year increase of 18%. Grades improved by 4% to 3.41 carats per hundred tonnes (cpht).

Rambler Metals and Mining PLC (LON:RMM) has appointed Andre Booyzen as its new chief executive.

Booyzen has 15 years of experience in the mining sector, Rambler said, and recently led the financial turnaround at Mandalay Resources Corp’s (TSX:MND) Costerfield gold mine in Australia.

He will replace outgoing CEO Norman Williams, who is staying on for a short period to assist with the handover.

African Battery Metals PLC (LON:ABM) shares rose on Wednesday on news the firm is to push ahead with its work in Cameroon following a review, with the tenements held seen as highly prospective for elevated grades of nickel and cobalt.

In a statement, the AIM-listed battery metal exploration and development company noted that a desktop study undertaken by Sahara Natural Resources, completed for the company in June 2018, which ranked the interests in order of technical priority has been reviewed.

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