TORONTO, Feb. 7, 2012 /CNW/ - Strata Minerals Inc. (TSX-V: SMP) ("Strata" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has entered into a definitive joint venture agreement (the "JV Agreement") with South Boulder Mines Limited ("STB") on the Cardabia Phosphate Project (the "Cardabia Project") in Western Australia. Under the terms of the JV Agreement, Strata will acquire an 80% interest in the Cardabia Project in consideration for a cash payment of AUD $200,000 and the issuance of 2.5 million Strata common shares. Strata will manage the Cardabia Project through to the completion of a bankable feasibility study (the "BFS") and STB will have a free-carry interest in the Cardabia Project during that period. Upon completion of the BFS, pro-rata dilution of ownership of the Cardabia Project will occur between Strata and STB based on each partner's proportional contribution to the ongoing expenditures of the Cardabia Project.
The Cardabia Project is comprised of tenement applications E08/2359, E08/2322, E08/2301, E08/2302 and E08/2303 which cover a total area of approximately 1,600 km2. The Cardabia Project is located within the Ashburton Mineral Field approximately 1,000 km north of Perth with several key logistical infrastructure solutions within close proximity including: (1) road access from the North West Coastal Highway immediately adjacent to the eastern tenement boundary (see Figure 1 attached); (2) access to the Dampier to Bunbury Gas Pipeline, which passes to the east of the tenement boundary; (3) access to an abundant artesian water supply from the Carnarvon Basin located below the tenement, which has a demonstrated flow rate of 5 million litres per day. In addition, the tenement is only 35 km from the coast to the west and 80 km from the town of Exmouth to the north.
Strata and its consultants have conducted due diligence using open file historical geological data, as well as a field trip to the Cardabia Project site. A significant amount of historical data exists on the Cardabia Project from work conducted between 1989 and 1991 by CRA Exploration Pty Ltd, a former subsidiary of Rio Tinto Ltd. Although originally exploring for base metals on the Cardabia Project, high grade values of phosphate were discovered from surface sampling and drilling. In total, 74 aircore drill holes were drilled for a total of 4,243 metres on a roughly 7 km by 3 km grid pattern throughout the Cardabia Project, although the grid distance was often wider to target the N-S structures. A total of 529 drill samples were selectively sampled using gamma logging and were tested for higher uranium values which are sometimes coincident with phosphate. Other test work included 26 pits excavated over the strike of the phosphate. Only the coarse grained size fraction was tested for potential physical upgrade with average figures of 30.3% P2O5, 4.2% SiO2 and 2.5% combined Fe2O3/Al2O3. However, there has been insufficient historical exploration to define a mineral resource, and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the target being delineated as a mineral resource.
Nigel Gellard, President & CEO of Strata stated, "Given the Cardabia Project's encouraging historical exploration work and its proximity to important infrastructure and the rapidly growing markets of Southeast Asia, China and India, this joint venture represents a significant value creation opportunity for Strata. We are very encouraged by the results of our preliminary data analysis, and from our observations based on our field visit to the site. We are excited about the potential for this project and look forward to working with STB to bring it to fruition."
Strata intends to conduct further field test work at the Cardabia Project, particularly in drill intersections, as gamma logging may not be a definitive tool to pick the phosphate horizons as some phosphate deposits do not have coincident high uranium/gamma values. In addition, metallurgical and chemical test work, which has not previously been carried out, is planned to test the medium and finer grained fractions for upgrade. Field investigation will aim to test the deposit thickness and upgrade potential of the material. The first phase of the field work is expected to take 5 months and is scheduled to commence immediately.
The acquisition of an interest in the Cardabia Project is subject to acceptance by the TSX Venture Exchange.
About Strata Minerals Inc.
Strata Minerals Inc. is an emerging, Australasia focused, agricultural nutrient company exploring for commercial scale phosphate rock mineralization deposits. Armed with the objectives of becoming a supplier to the global fertilizer industry and generating wealth for its shareholders, Strata is currently advancing its phosphate exploration projects in Western Australia and Queensland and intends to broaden its focus to other agricultural nutrients including potash and lime. For further information, please refer to the Company's website at www.strataminerals.com.
Special Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements included herein constitute forward-looking statements. The words "expect", "intend", "anticipate", "propose" and "may" and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements regarding the Transaction, the operation and development of Strata's mineral properties. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumption. While such estimates and assumptions are considered reasonable by the management teams of Strata, they are inherently subject to significant business, economic, competitive and regulatory uncertainties and risks and accordingly may not occur as described herein or at all. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance or events and, accordingly are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements due to the inherent uncertainty of such statements.
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.
PDF with caption: "Figure 1". PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2012/02/07/20120207_C2010_DOC_EN_9755.pdf
For further information:
Nigel Gellard, President & CEO
Tel: +61 4 0793 8630
Email: [email protected]
Peter Kozicz, EVP & CFO
Tel: 1 905 815-9103
Email: [email protected]