Caledonia Mining has entered a MOU with Fremiro Investments with the intention to purchase Femiro’s 15% shareholding in Blanket Mine.
On completion of the transaction, Caledonia Mining will have an effective 64% shareholding in Blanket with the constituent Blanket shareholders as follows:
- Wholly-owned subsidiaries of Caledonia – 64%
- NIEEF – 16%
- Blanket Employee Trust Services – 10%
- Gwanda Community Share Ownership Trust – 10%
In line with previous public statements, Caledonia Mining has expressed an interest in increasing its shareholding in Blanket, a strategy of which the above transaction forms a key component.
Commenting on the transaction, Steve Curtis, CEO of Caledonia Mining, said:
“We are delighted to agree a transaction with Fremiro for the purchase of their 15% stake in Blanket; they have been a supportive shareholder of Blanket since 2012 and we welcome them as shareholders in Caledonia Mining.
“Blanket is well-advanced on implementing the investment programme which commenced in early 2015 and is expected to result in Blanket achieving an annual production rate of at least 80,000 ounces per annum by 2021, at a low cash cost.
Caledonia Mining is evaluating further investment opportunities in Zimbabwe.
Such new opportunities, if they result in one or more transactions, are likely to be held directly by Caledonia Mining and/or its subsidiaries rather than by Blanket.
By moving its participation up from Blanket to Caledonia, Fremiro is well-positioned to participate with Caledonia in any further investment opportunities.
“We are also very pleased to increase our shareholding in Blanket to a majority stake, moving from 49% to 64% following this transaction. Blanket Mine has been an excellent investment for Caledonia since we originally invested in Zimbabwe in 2006 and we are delighted to be able to increase our shareholding in this outstanding asset.
“Today’s transaction forms an important step in our stated goal of increasing our shareholding in Blanket since the Zimbabwean government removed the indigenisation requirement for gold mining businesses earlier this year.
“We look forward to evaluating further investment opportunities in Zimbabwe as they become available”.