Boonanarring Project Capital Financing
The Company's primary focus during the quarter was investigating and actively seeking project finance to support the development of its 100%-owned, high-grade Boonanarring mineral sands project in the North Perth Basin in WA, in accordance with the bankable feasibility study (BFS) announced 30 May 2017.
Highlights from the BFS include:
- Low project capital cost estimate of A$52M inclusive of ~$8M for resalable land;
- Project Pre-Tax NPV of A$135M at 8% discount rate;
- Project Pre-Tax IRR of 64%; Payback period of 22 months;
- Off-Take Agreement for 100% of products/revenue in place; and
- Relocatable capital equipment to produce HMC already acquired.
Debt Financing - With the assistance of the Company's finance consultant, PCF Capital, a data room was established in July 2017 to provide information to potential debt providers for the Boonanarring project. The initial focus was on Tier-1 financial institutions. In September 2017 the focus was expanded to Tier-2 non-bank debt providers in an effort to attract a wider range of funding options.
By the end of September, discussions were continuing with two tier-1 financial institutions and October roadshows were being planned with a number of Tier-2 non-bank debt providers. Debt term sheets, likely to be subject to further due diligence, are anticipated by mid-November 2017.
Equity Financing - The Company continued with its marketing efforts through attendance at industry conferences and with road-shows arranged by select brokers, to seek interest from sophisticated and institutional investors in providing equity capital for Boonanarring.
Image commissioned Breakaway Research to conduct independent research on the Company. This research report was published in August 2017 and can be accessed through the Company's website. The Company has also been advised by two Australian-based brokers that they are conducting independent research on Image and these reports will likely be published during the 4th Quarter 2017.
Boonanarring Project Development Progress
The mining contractor tendering process was advanced during the quarter, resulting in the selection of Piacentini and Son (Piacentini) as the preferred contractor. Discussions and negotiations will continue with Piacentini with the aim of advancing a mining contract that is ready for execution following a Decision to Mine currently scheduled to occur before the end of December 2017.
Three additional approvals required for the development of the Boonanarring project were received in August 2017. This leaves only one remaining approval being the 'Works Approval' which is anticipated to be received in the coming weeks.
Rising Zircon Prices
On 12 October 2017, the Company announced that effective 1 October, the market price for zircon increased US$130 to US$1,230 per tonne for Iluka premium grade zircon and the zircon reference price in China that is to be used to determine the price for Image's heavy mineral concentrate, also increased by US$130 to US$1,295 per tonne. This increase in the price of zircon serves to increase the NPV of the Boonanarring 'Spot Price' Case by 47% from AU$58M to AU$85M, and may serve to increase the debt carrying capacity for the Boonanarring project.
Increase in Boonanarring 'Proved' Ore Reserves
On 21 August 2017, the Company announced a 60% increase in ore tonnes in the 'Proved' category of Ore Reserves at Boonanarring, further increasing the confidence level of the overall BFS results.
Completion of Interim Fund Raising During the Quarter
On 12 July 2017, the Company announced that it had received commitments to subscribe for a placement of 33,648,356 new shares at a price of 9 cents each, to raise $3,028,352 (before costs). The funds are being used to continue to fast-track development of the Boonanarring project in advance of full project capital funding.
The Half-Year Financial Report ending 30 June 2017 was filed on 6 September 2017.
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About Image Resources NL
Image Resources NL (ASX:IMA) is an emerging Mineral Sands producer focused on the development of its high-grade Boonanarring Project in the North Perth Basin while continuing to expand its resources and reserves base.
Image Resources NL (ASX:IMA) Issues Contract for Construction of Boonanarring Site Entry Intersection