Barminco secures $240m Nova contract with Independence

The Nova underground operation. Image: IGO.

Independence Group (IGO) has strengthened its mining services partnership with Barminco at the Nova nickel-copper-cobalt operation in Western Australia with a four-year contract extension worth $240 million.

The contract, which includes the option of a two-year extension, is for underground mining works at the Fraser Range project.

Barminco has been working at Nova since it started development in 2015, having extracted 2.4Mt of ore and provided around 29km of underground development.

IGO launched production at Nova in July 2017. In the 2018 financial year, IGO produced 22,258 tonnes of nickel and 9545 tonnes of copper at an average cost of $2.78/lb of nickel at Nova.

“We are proud to say that Barminco has been at Nova from the outset and it is very pleasing that we can continue our close association with IGO through this long-term extension at Nova,” said Barminco chief executive officer Paul Muller.

Barminco and IGO will also establish a technology development committee to collaborate on new productivity- and safety-focused technologies.

IGO managing director and CEO Peter Bradford said, “Both Barminco and IGO are committed to mapping and implementing these productivity improvements through new technologies. The establishment of this technology committee is an important step towards this objective.”

Barminco’s extension at Nova is its second major contract announcement in the past week. The underground specialist last week revealed it was awarded $335 million of contract extensions at Gold Fields’ Agnew mine in Western Australia.

IGO, meanwhile, announced earlier this week it had amended a power agreement with energy company Zenith Energy to supply a significant amount of solar power to complement Nova’s diesel power station.

This hybrid power solution is expected to add 12.5GWh of generation per year.

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