The mineral wash
plant at Namakwa
Sands 1
 
Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 02 October 2008 – Diversified, South African-based resources group Exxaro Resources Limited (Exxaro) has acquired the Namakwa Sands operations from Anglo American for a cash consideration of R2 015 million, and will acquire a 26% interest in Black Mountain Mining from Anglo American for approximately R180 million.

A company announcement published on the SENS late yesterday said: “The last of the conditions precedent have been fulfilled. Accordingly, the acquisition by Exxaro of Namakwa Sands has been completed. Exxaro will acquire the 26% interest in Black Mountain Mining once the share sale formalities have been completed.”

This acquisition completes a process that started when the former Kumba Resources Limited was unbundled in November 2006, and re-listed as Exxaro. Options to acquire Namakwa Sands and the 26% interest in Black Mountain/Gamsberg were granted to Exxaro as part of the unbundling transaction.

The Exxaro announcement explained that Namakwa Sands’ major assets included a mineral sands mine at Brand-se-Baai, a mineral separation plant at Koekenaap, and a smelter at Saldanha Bay, all situated on the west coast of the Western Cape. The business produces 125 000t of zircon, 185 000t of titania slag and 100 000t of pig iron per year.

“These acquisitions position Exxaro strategically as one of the world’s top three suppliers of high-grade titanium dioxide feedstock and zircon,” said Exxaro CEO Sipho Nkosi. “Namakwa Sands is a world-class mineral sands operation with a highly skilled workforce which we value greatly. The operation will fit well within our mineral sands business strategy,” he added.

Exxaro also operates mineral sands mining and smelter operations in KwaZulu-Natal, and has a 50% ownership in the Tiwest Joint Venture – a fully integrated mineral sands and pigment producer in Western Australia.

The Black Mountain operation is located near the town of Aggeneys in the Northern Cape, where it mines lead, zinc, copper and silver. Some 45 000tpa of zinc concentrate is supplied to Exxaro’s zinc metal refinery in Springs, Gauteng, on a long-term basis. The Gamsberg zinc project is potentially a large-scale, low-to-medium-grade, open-pit mine adjacent to Black Mountain, with an estimated production capacity of 300 000tpa of zinc.