First Quantum Minerals has signed an agreement to sell its Kevitsa nickel-copper-platinum group elements mine in Finland to Boliden for $712m.
The Kevitsa mine is a nickel-copper-gold-platinum group metals (PGM) mine and processed 6.7 million tonnes of ore in 2015.
First Quantum Minerals chairman and CEO Philip Pascall said: "This transaction is one of the initiatives within our plan, announced in October 2015, aimed at strengthening the company’s balance sheet and improving its capital structure to better suit the development and start-up timetable of the Cobre Panama project.
"We are continuing to advance other strategic initiatives, which are expected to be finalised at various times over the next several months, to meet those objectives."
Boliden president and CEO Lennart Evrell said: "Kevitsa started production in the end of 2012 and is an early stage mine, which we believe can provide good synergies with our existing business in mining, concentrating, smelting and regional exploration.
"It also establishes a nickel feed base load for our Harjavalta smelter."
Together with the Kokkola and Harjavalta smelters and the Kylylahti mine, the latest acquisition is set to expand Boliden’s platform in Finland.
Boliden plans to finance the acquisition with a 24-month bank facility provided by Nordea, through evaluating various refinancing options.
The sale is subject to customary approval by competition authorities in Finland, Sweden and Germany and is expected to conclude during May 2016.
Image: Kevitsa mills under erection. Photo: courtesy of First Quantum Minerals Ltd.