Canadian company Uranium One has signed an agreement to acquire the MALCO joint venture in Wyoming, US, for $35m cash from wholly-owned subsidiaries of Areva and EDF.

The deal includes the Irigaray in-situ recovery (ISR) central processing plant and the Christensen Ranch satellite ISR facility, which together will form the basis of the company’s operating plan in Wyoming, along with associated U3O8 resources located in the Powder River Basin, Uranium One said.

The acquisition of the Irigaray and Christensen Ranch ISR facilities is an excellent complement
to the company’s current Wyoming uranium resource portfolio, Uranium One CEO Jean Nortier said.

“By acquiring existing, licensed production facilities, the company will reduce the permitting and construction risk associated with developing our own central production plant,” Nortier said.

Uranium One expects its Moore Ranch project to become a satellite ISR operation, with Irigaray processing resins into dried U3O8.

Other projects in the Powder River Basin could also be developed as satellite operations with final processing through Irigaray, Uranium One said.

The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2010 and is subject to regulatory approvals.