Australia’s Croesus Mining and WA nickel prospector Mark Creasy and APEX Minerals have announced they are rolling their nickel operations into one, under the name of Sirius Resources.

Under the deal, Apex will transfer its rights in the Lawlers Nickel joint ventures and other nickel tenements in return for about 67 million Croesus shares and 600 million five-year options with a strike price of 3 cents.

Croesus will gain over 8,000km2 of nickel and base metal exploration acreage from Mark Creasy in key areas of the Collurabbie and Fraser Range belts.

The move will allow Apex to concentrate on its gold operation at Wiluna, according to Apex managing director Mark Ashley.

Ashley says Wiluna’s target is 120,000oz, and that funds raised from this will be put back into exploration and resource definition.

“The creation of a new nickel and base metals explorer provides Apex shareholders with an opportunity to have an exposure to a fully-funded exploration programme in some of the world’s most promising nickel regions while benefiting from the cash flow generated at Wiluna,” Ashley said.

Croesus will have access to Apex personnel and management expertise under the agreement.