Canadian exploration and development company Marimaca Copper has secured a strategic investment of C$20m ($15.1m) from Japanese company Mitsubishi via a non-brokered private placement.

Marimaca plans to use the proceeds from the investment to fast-track the development of its Marimaca copper project in Chile’s Antofagasta region, as well as for working capital and general corporate purposes.

A major investor in the Latin American copper industry, Mitsubishi will subscribe for an aggregate of 4,640,371 units comprising one common share and one common share purchase warrant, at a price of C$4.31 for each unit.

Upon completion of the investment, the Japanese company will hold 5% of issued and outstanding common shares in Marimaca on a non-diluted basis.

Marimaca Copper president and CEO Hayden Locke said: “We are pleased that Mitsubishi shares our view that the Marimaca Copper Project is a unique, very high-quality, development stage project. Its location affords it several advantages including an expectation that it will be among the lowest carbon-intensity copper producers in the industry.

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“It is one of the very few new copper projects that have the potential to deliver near-term production of meaningful scale.

“Mitsubishi’s investment significantly de-risks our next phase of development and provides funding to accelerate progress toward the definitive feasibility study (DFS) and permitting while minimising dilution to our existing shareholders.”

Marimaca plans to go ahead with the DFS and permitting workstreams on the copper project.