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Lace Diamond Mines has successfully drawn down the first tranche of the R220 million project finance facility from the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC).

The first tranche of R30 million was received on schedule in accordance with the loan documents signed in September 2012. Lace is a 74% owned subsidiary of DiamondCorp, a Southern African diamond development and exploration company.

As previously announced, the loan is secured over the assets of Lace and is guaranteed by the company. It includes representations and warranties from Lace and the company which are usual for transactions of this nature. The term of the loan is seven years with an interest rate of two per cent over the South African Prime Rate (which is currently 8.5%), such interest to be capitalised for the first two years from 15 August 2013 and payable semi-annually in arrears thereafter. There is a two year moratorium on loan repayments.

Underground development at the Lace mine continues on schedule and within budget. The processing plant has been fully commissioned and tailings re-treatment is underway. The first 5 000 carat parcel of diamonds recovered from tailings is being prepared for marketing and sale in October.

Relocation of finance function and corporate update
During August, the company relocated its finance function from London to the Lace mine in South Africa, to better align the finance, administration and operational functions. As part of the move Sanette de Wet was appointed Chief Financial Officer. De Wet, an accountant with more than 10 years’ experience in financial management and audit of public and private companies, was previously the Financial Manager of Specialised Metallurgical Projects (Pty) Limited. She will manage the existing finance team in place at the Lace Mine.

In addition to operational efficiencies, the relocation will result in significant cost savings. The company wishes to thank the previous London-based CFO John Forrest and the Financial Controller Ian Lynch for their services since the formation of the company. In London, DiamondCorp can confirm that Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited will act as sole UK Broker in addition to its current role of nominated adviser.

In a continued effort to reduce corporate costs, the company has made other savings and continues to explore further corporate overhead cost efficiencies.

 

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