TSX: MNB, ASX: MBN
PERTH, Australia, July 9 /CNW/ - Mirabela Nickel Limited (TSX: MNB, ASX:
MBN) is pleased to announce it has entered into a US$80m bridge financing
facility with Barclays and Credit Suisse to fund ongoing construction at Santa
Furthermore, Barclays and Credit Suisse have agreed to underwrite a
US$280m term loan facility, subject to standard conditions including
syndication. Drawdown under the US$280m facility is expected to take place
before year end whereupon the US$80m bridge facility will be repaid. The
bridging loan and the US$280m underwriting are credit approved by both Banks.
1,500,000 options will be issued to the Banks (half each) priced at A$7.22.
The options will vest subject to certain milestones and are exercisable for
the period three years after the date the options vest.
"We are delighted to obtain credit approval for bank financing and secure
financing for ongoing construction of the Santa Rita project," said Managing
Director, Nick Poll. "Whilst general credit market conditions have weakened
over the last year, interest in financing the Santa Rita project has remained
strong. This reflects the low capital and operating cost structure of the
Santa Rita project compared with other new nickel projects," he said.
Under an offtake agreement announced today, Votorantim will provide
Mirabela with an additional US$50M in prepayment financing, which will be
subordinated to the Bank facilities.
This total debt package is expected to finance the remaining construction
costs and working capital requirements for development of the Santa Rita
Project at a throughput rate of 4.6 million tonnes a year. Construction is now
about 30% complete and the project remains on track to commence production mid
Barclays and Credit Suisse are leaders in emerging market financing and
their teams respectively bring a wealth of experience in mining & metals,
financing projects and Brazil specifically. They are complemented by two of
the strongest commodity derivative groups in the investment banking sector.
Nick Poll Craig Burton
Managing Director Corporate Director
Mirabela Nickel Ltd is listed on the Australian and Toronto stock
exchanges. With an open-cut mining reserve of 84mt grading 0.61% Ni, Santa
Rita is the largest greenfields nickel sulphide discovery in the last 12 years
and the third largest open-cut nickel sulphide mining reserve worldwide.
Construction of a nickel sulphide concentrator commenced in November 2007
and is progressing well. The plant is expected to produce 18,500 tpa of nickel
in a sulphide concentrate from one open-cut mine starting from mid 2009
increasing to 25,000 tpa by mid 2010. At this rate of production the project
will have a mine life of at least 14 years.
Photos of the construction progress are available on the Company website
For further information:
For further information: Australia contact: Nick Poll, Managing
Director, Telephone: +61 8 9324 1177, firstname.lastname@example.org; Australia contact
(media): Caroline de Mori, Purple Communications, Telephone: +61 8 9485 1254,
email@example.com; Toronto contact (media): Eric Tang, Porter Novelli,
Telephone: (416) 422-7200, firstname.lastname@example.org