Deals this week: Blumont Group, Avanco Resources, Peabody Energy and more

10 October 2013 (Last Updated October 10th, 2013 18:30)

Blumont Group has agreed to extend a loan facility of up to $8m to coking coal exploration and development company Cokal.

Blumont Group has agreed to extend a loan facility of up to $8m to coking coal exploration and development company Cokal.

The loan facility will allow development work to continue on Cokal's projects.

Both the companies plan to continue their discussions on Blumont's further investment in Cokal.

Earlier in 2013, Blumont entered into a conditional agreement to acquire a 12.75% stake in the enlarged issued share capital of Cokal.

The principal activities of Cokal are in coal exploration and the coking coal business and the company holds interests in coal exploration tenements in Indonesia and Tanzania.

Cokal is currently developing its 60%-owned Bumi Barito mineral project, located at Upper Barito Coal Basin, Regency of Murung Raya, in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia.

The project has a total of 77 million tonnes of JORC1 compliant coal resources in multiple seams comprising 70 million tonnes of inferred resource and seven million tonnes of indicated resources.

Avanco Resources has signed a non-binding agreement with BlackRock World Mining Trust on key commercial terms with regard to $12m of non-dilutive royalty-based investment.

The implementation of the proposed transaction is subject to a number of conditions, including but not limited to a receipt by the company or its subsidiary of the Mining Licence for the Antas North Deposit (Stage 1).

It is also subject to a JORC compliant reserve statement being published for Stage 1, satisfactory completion of due diligence by BlackRock and reaching agreement on the legal and tax structure of the proposed transaction on terms mutually acceptable to both parties.

On executing the transaction, Avanco would secure the shortfall funding required to potentially position Antas North as fully financed into production for ~12,000tpa of copper and ~7,000ozpa of gold.

The Antas North project is expected to cost $70m including contingency and working capital.

Peabody Energy has reached an agreement with Patriot Coal and the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) to resolve all issues related to Patriot's bankruptcy.

As per the proposed settlement, Peabody would provide $310m, payable over four years through 2017, to fund the Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association (VEBA) and settle all Patriot and UMWA claims involving the Patriot bankruptcy.

Peabody's existing contractual commitment to fund healthcare benefits for a certain group of Patriot retirees would terminate on 31 December 2013.

After termination, all healthcare benefits would be funded by the VEBA and Peabody may also provide some credit support for a limited time on Patriot's behalf.

The settlement is subject to a definitive agreement among the parties, bankruptcy court approval and the effectiveness of Patriot's plan of reorganisation.

Mineral Mountain Resources and Holy Terror Mining Company have mutually agreed to amend an original option agreement by extending expenditure requirements from three years to ten years.

The project, which totals about 5,048 acres in size, features an area 14 kilometres long by 1.5 kilometres wide.

The property, which now hosts eight gold producers, is situated within a belt of rocks consisting of sheared, carbonate iron-formation rich, metamorphosed Precambrian rocks that trends through the Holy Terror gold project.

Seven of the eight shafts are aligned in a northwest direction for a distance of about 1.4km and the gold mineralisation dips steeply to the northeast.

Multinational gold producer OceanaGold has agreed to acquire mineral exploration firm Pacific Rim Mining.

As per the deal, OceanaGold will acquire all of the common shares of Pacific Rim that it does not already own.

The transaction is subject to applicable regulatory and exchange approvals, and the approval of the Supreme Court of British Columbia.

The acquisition adds the El Dorado high grade gold-silver resource.

El Dorado has a measured and indicated resource of 1,430,500 ounces gold equivalent (AuEq) grading 10.4 grams AuEq per tonne and an inferred resource of 282,400 ounces AuEq grading 10.47 grams AuEq per tonne.

Nri