Bounty has confirmed that its receivers and managers have accepted an offer from QCoal, which already held around 6.54 per cent of Bounty’s shares.
The company went into voluntary administration last December, transitioning Cook Colliery to care and maintenance, stating it was “exploring all options”, for Bounty’s future, including recapitalisation or selling.
This followed a period of depressed coking coal prices and a loss of production at the Bowen Basin site following a roof-fall during mid-October that buried the CM13 continuous miner.
This caused a 23,000-tonne run-of-mine (ROM) loss in production for October and the company estimated a further indirect loss of 150,000 tonnes ROM and 135,000 tonnes of reserves as a result of the roof fall.
Bounty ceased operations at one mining panel to offset these losses and consequently was forced to lay off 21 workers.
This isn’t the first time QCoal has come to Bounty’s rescue; last October Bounty signed a $90 million refinancing facility agreement with QCoal Bounty Holdings.
The deal provided the company with $60 million in cash funding and a guarantee facility for $30 million, after Bounty failed to pay outstanding amounts to Amaroo Blackdown Investments and XCoal Energy and Resources.
Bounty purchased Cook Colliery from Caledon Coal in December 2017, after it sustained serious flood damage in May 2017.
In its time as Cook Colliery owner, Bounty restarted operations and upgraded the Koorilgah rail loop that services the mine.
The site infrastructure includes an existing underground mine, a 13 kilometre paved haulage road, the original 1970’s built coal holding plant which was upgraded in 2015, coal storage and handling for both coking and thermal coal, rail infrastructure and two active tailings storage facilities.
As well as Cook Colliery, Bounty holds a portfolio of coking and thermal coal production, development and exploration assets in and around Queensland’s Bowen and Laura Basins, including the Cook North, Minyango and Wongai projects.
The sale to QCoal is expected to be completed by May 2020.