Accelerate tops up coffers to fuel WA exploration 

Accelerate Resources (ASX:AX8) has received a $300,000 cash injection from Fortescue Metals Group’s (ASX:FMG) wholly owned subsidiary FMG Resources. 

Accelerate, which has a $16.46 million market capitalisation, says it has received the funds after offloading 2 of its exploration licences in the East Pilbara region.

Funds will be used to support near-term drilling and exploration at Accelerate’s Karratha Lithium Projects. 

As part of the transaction, a milestone payment of $500,000 cash upon Fortescue starting mining within the licences has been established. 

Accelerate also announces permitting and heritage survey activities in relation to a maiden drilling program at the Prinsep Lithium Project have been submitted. 

The company reports a program of works has also been submitted to the Department of Energy, Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DEMIRS) for approval while consumables and infrastructure are sourced to ensure rapid drill rig deployment once all permits are complete. 

Prinsep is an advanced drill-ready lithium pegmatite system within the rapidly developing Karratha-Roebourne hard-rock lithium belt about 35km west of Azure Minerals (ASX:AZS) Andover Lithium discovery. 

Accelerate Resources is a Perth-based explorer focused on discovering and developing critical metals, including lithium and manganese, as well as gold assets in Western Australia. 

The company’s Karratha Projects encompass about 90km-square of prospective tenure within the emerging Karratha-Roebourne hard-rock lithium belt.

Write to Adam Drought at Mining.com.au

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Written By Adam Drought
Born and raised in the UK, Adam is a sports fanatic with an interest in Rugby League and UFC/MMA. When not training in Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Adam attends Griffith University where he is completing his final year of a Communication & Journalism degree.

Plutonic solidifies next steps amid capital raise

Unlisted explorer Plutonic’s board has approved an ‘extensive, value-driving’ work program for 2024 focusing on its Champion Project in the Northern Territory, upon closing a previously announced capital raising. 

The company says exploration is set to begin in late April 2024, including a ‘very large’ induced polarisation (IP) survey that has been planned to test numerous ‘large’ porphyry and epithermal targets that were generated through work completed to date. 

It comes as Lion Selection Group (ASX:LSX) announces it has completed an investment of $2 million in Plutonic, which completed a capital raising totalling $3 million in early February 2024. 

Lion’s investment takes it to a 48.5% interest in Plutonic. 

Lion Selection Group Executive Chairman Robin Widdup says Lion holds a large interest in Plutonic and the company is ‘delighted’ to be working closely with the team. 

“This funding sets Plutonic up to deploy a large-scale IP survey, which will give us a great idea of targets to drill within large hydrothermal systems over an unexplored intersection of crustal-scale structures. This is exciting work in any market.”

Further, Plutonic notes that its Non-Executive Director Jon Hronsky has stepped down from the board of Plutonic and has been appointed Senior Exploration Advisor. 

The company says this appointment paves the way for Plutonic to build a strong Advisory Panel or technical and commercial specialist moving forward. Plutonic notes it does not plan to add additional directors to the board at this stage. 

Plutonic is a gold and copper explorer focused on its wholly owned Champion project that hosts a substantial array of epithermal veins over an area that is very ‘large’ in comparison with other known epithermal fields.

Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au     

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Written By Aaliyah Rogan
Relocated from the East Coast in New Zealand to Queensland Australia, Aaliyah is a fervent journalist who has a passion for storytelling. When Aaliyah isn’t writing stories, she is either spending time with friends and family or down at the beach.

De Grey to acquire Kalamazoo’s Ashburton Project

De Grey Mining (ASX:DEG) has signed an exclusive option agreement to acquire Kalamazoo Resources’ (ASX:KZR) Ashburton Gold Project in Western Australia. 

De Grey, which has a $2.22 billion market capitalisation, says Ashburton consists of granted mining leases and exploration licences, including Kalamazoo’s existing 1.44 million ounce gold resource, near its existing Hemi Gold Project. 

De Grey Managing Director Glenn Jardine says Ashburton is a ‘regionally strategic’ asset that provides the company with one of the largest unmined gold resources in the Pilbara.    

“The proposed 10Mtpa gold plant at Hemi, including a 800,000tpa OPOx circuit, will be a regionally strategic asset that provides the company with the potential to treat gold ore and concentrates from other regional gold Projects. This leverage has the potential to increase Hemi’s annual gold production rate, economic returns and project life. 

Ashburton’s 1.44 million ounce resource is one of the largest unmined gold resources in the Pilbara outside of Hemi. It has previous mining history, an extensive drilling database and development concept studies which indicate it may be complementary with our development strategy for Hemi. 

The company’s current Scoping Study into its 2.2Moz Hemi Regional Resource is also consistent with this strategy. However, the potential development of additional production sources outside the Hemi deposits would occur only following the commencement of production and cashflow from Hemi itself.”

As part of the agreement, De Grey must action a $3 million option fee payable to Kalamazoo within 5 business days of option execution. The option period is 12-18 months (at De Grey’s election), with the company to commit $1 million minimum expenditure for exploration, testwork, and studies as part of its due diligence. 

Execution of the option would result in a total payment of $30 million within 18 months of exercise. Payments can be made in cash or shares in De Grey shares at the buyers selection. 

During the option period, De Grey announces it plans to complete a detailed review of the current Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) of 16.2 million tonnes grading 2.8 grams per tonne gold for 1.44 million ounces across 5 deposits.

Development studies undertaken by Kalamazoo, and previous owners, to date have highlighted the potential for Ashburton to produce a ‘high-grade’ gold concentrate from processing open pit ore. 

Further, initial diamond drilling by De Grey indicates the potential to economically deliver concentrate at some future time from Ashburton to the proposed Hemi pressure oxidation plant, with a view to potentially increase Hemi’s annual gold production rate and/or extend Hemi’s operational life. 

De Grey has established business development and studies teams separate to its Hemi Project development team to conduct diamond drilling on Ashburton. 

The Ashburton Project exploration package covers 217km-square and sits about 35km from the township of Paraburdoo and is in close proximity to potential support and services. 

Additionally, pre-existing payments and royalties to previous owner Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) will be assumed by De Grey in the event it exercises the option. 

The payments and royalties include $5 million on mining of the first 250,000 ounces of ore and a 2% net smelter royalty (NSR) on the first 250,000 ounces of gold produced, with a 0.75% NSR royalty of any subsequent gold produced from the tenements. The NSR will be applied to any other metals produced from the tenements. 

De Grey is a Western Australia gold explorer and project developer focused on defining a tier one project with ‘district-scale’ potential. 

As of 30 December 2023, De Grey had $342.729 million cash and cash equivalents at hand, according to its latest quarterly report.

Write to Adam Drought at Mining.com.au

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Written By Adam Drought
Born and raised in the UK, Adam is a sports fanatic with an interest in Rugby League and UFC/MMA. When not training in Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Adam attends Griffith University where he is completing his final year of a Communication & Journalism degree.

Piedmont to sell wave of Atlantic shares to Assore

Piedmont Lithium (ASX:PLL) has agreed to sell 24.3 million shares in Atlantic Lithium (ASX:A11) to the latter’s largest shareholder, Assore International Holdings, for US$7.8 million.  

Piedmont, which has a $558.88 million market capitalisation, says the shares will be sold to Assore for £0.25 per share, representing a premium to the prevailing market price. 

The shares to be sold are about 3.9% of Atlantic’s outstanding shares. Following the transaction, Assore will own about 28.4% of Atlantic. 

Piedmont is expected to retain 32.7 million Atlantic shares, about 5.2% ownership of Atlantic. 

According to Piedmont, the sale of the shares will have no impact on Piedmont’s joint venture, earn-in, or offtake position with Atlantic of the Ewoyaa Project. 

Piedmont Lithium President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Keith Phillips says the company is taking a disciplined approach to deploying capital at its Ewoyaa project given the current lithium price environment. 

“We finished 2023 in a ‘strong’ position with about US$72 million in cash and US$47.4 million in marketable securities as of market close on 17 January. We have always viewed our Atlantic shares as a potential source of capital and are pleased to further bolster our cash balance through this agreement. 

We remain confident about the potential of Ewoyaa as a logistically advantaged, low-cost producer of spodumene concentrate, but are taking a disciplined approach to deploying capital in the current lithium price environment and positioning ourselves for the recovery we anticipate in the lithium market.”

Piedmont Lithium is focused on developing a ‘world-class’, multi-asset, integrated lithium business focused on enabling the transition to a net zero world.

Write to Adam Drought at Mining.com.au

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Written By Adam Drought
Born and raised in the UK, Adam is a sports fanatic with an interest in Rugby League and UFC/MMA. When not training in Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Adam attends Griffith University where he is completing his final year of a Communication & Journalism degree.

WA1 taps investors for $40 million

WA1 Resources (ASX:WA1) has received firm commitments to raise $40 million via a placement to institutional, sophisticated, and professional investors. 

The $638.72 million market capitalisation company deploy the funds raised towards drilling and exploration activities at its West Arunta Project in Western Australia. The activities include metallurgical testwork, process and project studies, and permitting activities. 

Canaccord Genuity acted as sole lead manager, while privately held MST Financial Services and Bell Potter Securities acted as co-managers to the placement. 

WA1 Managing Director Paul Savich says these additional funds support a continuation of ‘major’ de-risking and critical path activities for West Arunta. 

“This work will progress alongside exploration and resource drilling, along with the estimation of an initial mineral resource for Luni in the June quarter of 2024.”

Under the placement, WA1 will issue 4 million new fully paid ordinary shares in WA1 at $10 per share, representing a 5.5% discount to the 30-day volume weighted average price (VWAP) and a 10.2% discount to the last traded price of WA1 shares. 

The company notes that there are a ‘significant’ number of assay results from the 2023 drilling campaign still outstanding. WA1 expects to report these results this quarter, as they prepare to begin the 2024 field season.

WA1 Resources is a mineral explorer focused on its 3 assets operating within Western Australia.

Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au  

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Written By Aaliyah Rogan
Relocated from the East Coast in New Zealand to Queensland Australia, Aaliyah is a fervent journalist who has a passion for storytelling. When Aaliyah isn’t writing stories, she is either spending time with friends and family or down at the beach.

Ord Minnett, Canaccord Genuity underwrite Investigator’s $1.72 million SPP

Investigator Resources (ASX:IVR) has closed its share purchase plan oversubscribed, yesterday (15 January 2024) raising about $1.72 million.

Albeit fully underwritten for $1 million, Investigator says substantial shareholder support saw demand far in excess of the underwritten amount and consequently there is no shortfall.

The SPP was underwritten by Ord Minnett and Canaccord Genuity (Australia), as announced on 19 December 2023.

Managing Director Andrew McIlwain says the intent of the SPP is to provide the opportunity for shareholders to participate on the same terms as the recent placement.

“Together with the $4 million raised last month, these SPP funds ensure that Investigator is well placed to complete the Paris Silver Project’s Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS), further exploration of the Peterlumbo tenement that hosts Paris and exploration activities across the Company’s 100% owned regional tenements.”

Write to Adam Orlando at Mining.com.au

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Written By Adam Orlando
Mining.com.au Editor-in-Chief Adam Orlando has more than 20 years’ experience in the media having held senior roles at various publications, including as Asia-Pacific Sector Head (Mining) at global newswire Acuris (formerly Mergermarket). Orlando has worked in newsrooms around the world including Hong Kong, Singapore, London, and Sydney.

Power Minerals banks $2.6 million strategic investment

Power Minerals (ASX:PNN) has received a strategic investment of $2.6 million from lithium sector investor Fuyang Mingjin New Energy Development. 

Power, which has a $17.93 million market capitalisation, says the funds will be used to accelerate the development of its lithium assets, including the Salta Project in the lithium triangle of Argentina. 

Mingjin is now a part of Power’s share register, holding 8.45% in the issued equity capital of the company. 

Under the binding Subscription Agreement between the companies, Mingjin invested the $2.6 million in Power via a placement of 6.5 million ordinary shares at an issue price of $0.40 per share. 

At 12:30pm AEST on Thursday 31 August, Power Minerals shares were up 10.2% to $0.27. 

Commenting on the investment, Power Minerals Managing Director Mena Habib says: “We are excited to confirm the completion of this strategic placement from Fuyang Mingjin New Energy Development Co. Ltd and are delighted to welcome them as a cornerstone investor in Power Minerals. 

The funds will be utilised to continue Power’s aggressive exploration and development of our Salt Lithium Project

Mingjin is an active institutional investor in the lithium sector, and we are aligned with them on our view of the upside potential of, and development plans for, our Argentinian lithium assets. The funds will be utilised to continue Power’s aggressive exploration and development of our Salt Lithium Project.”

The Salta Project comprises 5 salt lakes that sit within 7 mining leases over a 147.7km-square area. 

Mingjin is an active institutional investor in the lithium sector and has cornerstone equity investments in other ASX-listed companies Octava Minerals (ASX:OCT) and Patagonia Lithium (ASX:PL3). 

Power Minerals is a lithium-focused explorer and developer. The company’s core asset is the Salta Lithium Brine Project located in the prolific lithium triangle in Argentina. As of 30 June 2023, the company had $2.373 million cash and cash equivalents at hand, according to its latest quarterly report.

Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au     

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Written By Aaliyah Rogan
Relocated from the East Coast in New Zealand to Queensland Australia, Aaliyah is a fervent journalist who has a passion for storytelling. When Aaliyah isn’t writing stories, she is either spending time with friends and family or down at the beach.