Australian heavy rare earths developer, Northern Minerals Limited (ASX: NTU) has raised about $9.74 million through equity and debt, with the proceeds to be used for further development of the Browns Range project in the East Kimberley. The pilot plant development is progressing on time and on budget. The funds will be raised through the issue of 60.7 million ordinary shares at 7.8 cents each, plus a further drawdown of $5 million under the Lind facility.
- Browns Range Pilot Plant Project development progressing as planned, on time and on budget;
- Project enhancement initiatives, including downstream processing, kicked off;
- $9.74 million funding package in place;
- New financing measures to fund growth plans, including launch of share purchase plan offer; and
- Proposed bonus listed option issue for all shareholders, targeted for February 2018.
Australian heavy rare earths developer, Northern Minerals Limited (ASX: NTU) (the Company) is pleased to announce that is has raised approximately $9.74 million, through equity and debt, for further development of the Browns Range Pilot Plant and has commenced a program consisting of four enhancement initiatives aimed at increasing the economic potential of the Browns Range Heavy Rare Earths Project in the East Kimberley, WA and its other projects.
The Browns Range Pilot Plant development is progressing on time and on budget and the funds raised to progress its development will be raised through:
(a) the issue of 60,769,231 fully paid ordinary shares (Shares) at an issue price of $0.078 per Share to investors under a private placement out of its placement capacity under the ASX Listing Rules (without shareholder approval) to raise approximately $4.74 million (Placement). Investors under the Placement will also be issued free attaching unlisted options on a 1 for 10 basis, with an exercise price of $0.12 and an expiry date of 31 December 2019. $3.74 million has been received with a further $1 million due by 10 January 2018; and
(b) a further drawdown of $5 million under the Lind facility to be made prior to end of 2017, previously announced on 14 June 2017.
The enhancement initiatives include an increase in the exploration budget aimed at increasing the life of the potential large-scale project from 11 to 20+ years, studies of downstream processing options focussed on increasing the suite and value of revenue products, optimisation of mining and processing options from learnings of the Pilot Plant Project to date as well as the potential for new acquisitions in the rare earth sector.
To assist in funding these initiatives the Company invites eligible shareholders to participate in a Share Purchase Plan to acquire up to $15,000 worth of Shares, at an issue price of $0.078 per Share (being the same issue price under the Placement).
The Board also proposes to undertake a bonus issue of new listed options to eligible shareholders in February 2018 on a 1 for 5 basis, with an exercise price of $0.12 and expiry date 31 December 2019, subject to a prospectus being prepared and lodged with ASIC. The Company will apply for quotation of the options issued under the Placement when the new bonus options have been quoted.
Further information about the new enhancement initiatives, the Share Purchase Plan and the proposed bonus issue is set out below.
Northern Minerals’ Managing Director and CEO, George Bauk, commented “The expansion initiatives are all designed to position Browns Range and Northern Minerals as a globally significant rare earths producer.
“By looking to extend the potential mine life of Browns Range and move downstream in the value chain, we are aligning ourselves with the permanent magnet producers that are taking a long-term position on the growth of the Electric Vehicle market.
“The new funding announced today provides the Company with the flexibility and momentum to progress the second wave of growth for Browns Range.”