Canada-based mineral exploration company Orla Mining has signed a $188.3m (C$242m) deal to acquire Gold Standard Ventures.

According to the agreed terms, shareholders of Gold Standard will receive 0.1193 of Orla common share and C$0.0001 for each share held.

Upon deal completion, the existing shareholders of Gold Standard and Orla will hold 13% and 87%, respectively, of the combined business.

Gold Standard owns a 100% stake in the South Railroad project located on the prolific Carlin trend in Nevada. The open-pit heap-leach project is under the feasibility stage.

The company also owns the Lewis project on the Battle Mountain trend in Nevada.

Gold Standard CEO Jason Attew said: “We are excited to combine with Orla to create a leading gold producer with the potential to have multiple low-cost, low-complexity, open pit, heap leach operations in the near future.

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“This transaction provides Gold Standard shareholders with an immediate upfront premium, exposure to a well-financed gold producer, and strong upside potential as Orla delivers and de-risks the combined asset portfolio.

“Based on their recent success in constructing the Camino Rojo Oxide Mine on schedule and under budget, we believe that Orla is an ideal partner to bring South Railroad into production.”

Orla Mining CEO Jason Simpson said that the South Railroad Project is analogous to the company’s recently completed Camino Rojo mine in Mexico.

In a press statement, Orla Mining said: South Railroad combined with the Camino Rojo Oxide Mine and Orla’s robust organic growth pipeline in Mexico and Panama creates a path towards annual gold production of 500,000oz at industry-leading all-in cost margins.”

With the acquisition, Orla expects its proven and probable reserve base to increase to 3.8 million gold ounces while its measured and indicated mineral resources are anticipated to grow to 12.3 million gold ounces.