The merger of ASX-listed companies Blackthorn Resources and Intrepid Mines will create a well-funded copper company that will see the completion of the Kitumba copper project in Zambia.
The merged group is expected to add significant value to the project that is currently undergoing a definitive feasibility study (DFS), with construction of the new copper project to begin in the first half of 2016.
Speaking at the Paydirt 2014 Africa Down Under Conference, in Perth, Australia, last week, Blackthorn Resources CEO Mark Mitchell said the project had a $680-million capital cost and a net present value of $461-million. Mitchell also noted that the Kitumba project had a 11-year mine life and was expected to produce 56 000 t/y of copper.
The merger of Blackthorn and Intrepid presents shareholders of the latter entity with an opportunity to receive a capital return and ‘exposure to an attractive asset portfolio’, stated Mitchell in his presentation at the Paydirt conference. Mitchell mentioned that the Kitumba site was readily accessible and would have access to grid power, which would make operation feasible. He also highlighted that Zambia’s good regulatory and government environment was an added advantage to the project. Mitchell concluded that the merger would also see the new company well positioned to take advantage of attractive high-impact exploration opportunities in Zambia.