Perseus Mining strikes deal for stakes in promising African gold assets

Perseus Mining is set to acquire a 15% stake in Canadian junior Orca Gold after striking a deal with Resolute Mining, in a move that will give the mid-tier gold producer shares in two promising assets in North and West Africa.

ASX and TSX-listed Perseus is securing an interest in Orca’s 70%-owned Block 14 gold project in Northern Sudan and a 31.5% stake in Montage Gold, which is advancing the Kone gold project in Northern Côte d’Ivoire.

Block 14 is an open pit gold project with the potential to produce 200,000-300,000 ounces annually during a 13 year mine-life. Perseus will provide Orca with a US$5 million short-term loan facility for exploration and development at the project.

The Australian company also revealed it has been in talks with Orca to potentially acquire all of the junior’s outstanding securities. These negotiations are ongoing, Perseus said.

Meanwhile in Côte d’Ivoire, the Kone project could be the firm’s main target given its interest and history in the West African nation. Scoping work has indicated a 200,000+ ounces per annum operation over 15 years.

Perseus recently achieved an annualised gold production rate of 500,000 ounces of gold per year from its three existing operating mines: Edikan in Ghana, and Sissingué and Yaouré in Côte d’Ivoire.

CEO Jeff Quartermaine said that while Perseus expects to be able to maintain this level of production based on exploration success around its existing gold mines, it is always seeking to identify value accretive inorganic growth opportunities. “We believe that Orca could represent such an opportunity,” he said.