Nickel Mines expands Ranger stake in Indonesia

Nickel Mines has upped its stake in the Ranger nickel project in Indonesia to 60 per cent.

The company, which exercised an option within 60 days of first nickel pig iron production, increased its share by 43 per cent for $US121.4 million ($179.8 million) at a discounted valuation (of $US280 million).

Its initial acquisition for a 17 per cent interest in Ranger and all of shareholder loans came at a cost of $US50 million.

Nickel Mines made the decision in consultation with its collaboration partner Shanghai Decent, which held the other 83 per cent interest in Ranger.

“With the company now having a 60 per cent ownership interest in both the Hengjaya nickel and Ranger nickel projects (both in Indonesia), we are now firmly on track to reporting in excess of 20,000 tonnes per annum of attributable nickel metal production and establishing Nickel Mines as a globally significant nickel producer,” Nickel Mines managing director Justin Werner said.

Nickel Mines will complete its acquisition funding in three tranches, including a $US80 million senior debt facility from a Shanghai Decent associated company.

The company will also issue $US40 million worth of its shares and provide a cash payment of $US1.4 million.

Shanghai Decent commenced the commissioning of the Ranger mine in May, with two rotary kilns expected to take around two months to ramp up to 80 per cent of capacity.

“We look forward to providing further updates to the market as Ranger continues to ramp up to full production over the coming months,” Werner concluded

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