THE mining sector never ceases to intrigue. Take the case of Birimian Gold (ASX: BGS) and its Massigui gold project right next door to the world class Morilla gold project in Mali.
NOTHING like a win-win situation such as the dispute between copper miner Discovery Minerals and plant builder Sedgman case.
GREG Mazur, the managing partner of private equity group Quantum Capital, has presumably made an absolute fortune thanks to his prescient assessment of Intrepid Mines.
AFTER its spirited recent launch near Newcastle, Australasian Pacific Engineering Group has gone very quiet.
LONDON brokerage SPAngel regularly throws in a droll line or two in its daily resources update from the City. This week it was to do with asteroid mining.
EVIDENTLY there are at least two Ivan Glasenbergs in the resources sector. There’s the one that leads uber-capitalist trading and mining house Glencore/Xstrata, and then there’s apparently another on the lecture circuit handing out rather glib advice pertaining to miners becoming comrades in arms.
KNOCK us over with that proverbial feather! Reports that suggest investment bank Macquarie isn’t overly keen on the tie-up between PMI Gold and Keegan Resources is perhaps a rather less than surprising development.
INVESTMENT bankers and brokers be damned according to Terry Burgess, and as yet another miner reported this week of problems with an acquisition the OZ Minerals MD surely has a point.
NOVEMBER 19: IF Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest found it tough to get local financiers to appreciate his vision for a new force in iron ore in Western Australia’s Pilbara region in the early noughties, he should have tried putting the cap out in the late 1980s at the tail-end of WA Inc, Bond Inc and the ’87 stockmarket crash. A WA contracting business formed at the time celebrated its 25th birthday on the weekend, with one of the founders conceding the venture could have been shortlived without support from Europe … yes, Europe!
PICTURE this if you can: a brand new digger costing the best part of a million bucks rocks up in the Pilbara. The operator drops the bucket in a pile of fine dust that pervades the place, uncouples, and trams off with unsealed hydraulic hoses swinging freely in the dusty air.
WHAT is known is FMG has replaced unsecured short-medium term debt with secured medium-long term debt. What isn’t known is whether this represents a bet on sustainably higher long-term iron ore prices, or whether the survival of FMG is now dependent on the sale or partial sale of some of its assets? And if the latter, to whom?
THE cliché goes that conference presentations are just the filler for the real action occurring on the sidelines of these talkfests. One junior’s lamentable effort at the Australian Uranium Conference this week was a classic case in point.
ON THE basis that exploration results supersede all else, resource sector investors still breathing may have noted Sipa Resources is about to begin drilling its Enigma copper prospect at the company’s Thaduna project in Western Australia.
WELCOME to the future of mining! In the not so distant past a collision involving two large dump trucks at a big coal mine would have made news in the aftermath of the event. Major company, sometimes controversial coal mine and, as we said, very large equipment to boot. It all points to a notable incident. The difference now, and possibly increasingly in future, is what’s missing from the picture – people.
FOLLOWING what has been a very bleak period for resource stocks, this week’s commendation for contrarianism and sunny optimism has got to go to Neil Meadows, who, as the managing director of IMX Resources, maintains there is a realistic expectation of a rather major Tanzanian nickel sulphide project being developed and in production in 2015.
IT may be too early, or it may be too small … or the announcement might not even come at all. But a new mining technology acquisition by Canada’s CAE – if confirmed – will have been somewhat overshadowed by the company’s $C314 million purchase of Oxford Aviation Academy this week.
ANALYSTS have to listen and be nice when being given a briefing by most companies, especially, particularly, when it is a major company like Rio Tinto. But fair dinkum, how much of what a company like Rio Tinto says in public should anyone note other than perhaps from a contrarian perspective? Did anyone literally come down in the last shower?!
WHILE conspiracy theorists – and there are a few out there, apparently – will see the recent MASSIVE loss of contract earnings for Industrea in Queensland as an indicator that BHP Billiton has found another source of the technology Industrea was originally booked to supply, the company has strained to resist lending believability to such nonsense.
APPARENTLY it is tough to get mining engineers with block caving expertise. And apparently this means OZ Minerals potentially has a problem on its plate at its Carrapateena project, a problem that could, according to Citi, see the operation developed as a stoping operation instead. You’re kidding, right?
STANDARD negotiating tactic or just more bad news for John Borshoff’s Paladin Resources? That’s the obvious question after comments this week by Cameco Corp’s CEO Tim Gitzel that will have done precisely zero to please Borshoff or his shareholders.