SSR Mining has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the remaining 25% interest in Puna Operations from mining exploration and production company Golden Arrow Resources for a total consideration of around $34m.
Puna Operations was established via a joint venture, which combined SSR Mining’s Pirquitas mine and processing facility and Golden Arrow’s Chinchillas silver-lead-zinc project.
Commercial production at Puna Operations was declared in December 2018 following an accelerated period of development.
Upon completion of the transaction, SSR Mining will own 100% of Puna Operations.
SSR Mining president and CEO Paul Benson said: “This is a positive deal for both parties, in that it allows SSR Mining to consolidate our ownership in Puna Operations and streamline our reporting structure while benefiting Golden Arrow by providing funding to pursue its exploration projects, eliminating its debt obligation to us, and cancelling our shares in Golden Arrow.
“The transaction provides SSR Mining with near-term low-risk silver production growth while allowing Golden Arrow shareholders liquidity and exposure to both Puna Operations and our diversified asset portfolio through ownership of SSR Mining shares.”
Golden Arrow will own a direct interest in SSR Mining and retain low-risk exposure to Puna Operations via the equity interest.
Golden Arrow said the interest will strengthen its exposure across SSR Mining’s portfolio of gold production assets in Canada and the US.
The transaction simplifies Puna Operations’ management and reporting structure for reduced costs and flexible operations.
It enables SSR Mining to increase its estimated silver production profile in 2019 to 6.5Moz, based on mid-point production guidance.
Expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year, the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and other regulatory approvals.
Based in Canada, SSR Mining is a metals producer with three operations, including the Marigold gold mine in Nevada, the Seabee Gold Operation in Saskatchewan, and the 75%-owned and operated Puna Operations joint venture in Argentina.
Golden Arrow is actively exploring a new portfolio of advanced projects in Chile and other targets within its portfolio of over 200,000ha of properties in Argentina.