The International Finance Corporation (www.ifc.org), a member of the World Bank Group, on 20 Dec agreed to invest some CAD1,250,000 (Canadian dollars, equivalent to US$1.2million) in nickel and copper exploration. Sama Resources Inc (www.samaresources.com) will use the funds raised to advance the Samapleu project in eastern Côte d’Ivoire, near the border with Guinea, which it hopes will provide future jobs and government revenues to Côte d’Ivoire. The transaction is set to close in December.
The country has significant mineral resources but development of the mining sector has been hampered by political and military crisis during the past decade. IFC’s support to the Samapleu project will help promote good environmental and social standards in the country’s mining sector and send a positive signal for future foreign direct investment in the country.
IFC will work with Sama to ensure that exploration and any subsequent mine development is carried out in an environmentally and socially sustainable manner.
Dr. Marc-Antoine Audet, President and CEO of Sama, said in a press release (search “samapleu” on IFC website): “Sama is pleased to welcome IFC as a shareholder and partner on the Samapleu project. We look forward to drawing from IFC’s expertise to help ensure that the progress at Samapleu follows global best practices for the mineral exploration industry, the environment, and for working with local communities.”
Tom Butler, IFC Global Head for Mining, added: “We are excited to be making IFC’s first mining investment in Côte d’Ivoire through Sama, a company we believe has the leadership and resources to make the Samapleu project a success. This investment aligns with our strategy to support early-stage exploration companies with financing and advice.”
IFC offers mining clients in developing countries a broad range of financial and advisory services throughout the mining life cycle. Its early-equity investment programme is to help exploration-stage companies, such as Sama, with financing and advice on best practice in environmental and social management.
IFC is the largest global development institution focused only on the private sector. In fiscal 2011, investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion.
IFC is acquiring 3,968,254 units, each of 1 common share and 1 warrant, out of 5,105,539 units offered by Sama to IFC and 2 other investors in a private placement. Each warrant entitles the holder to purchase 1 common share of Sama at an exercise price of CAD0.4725 per common share for a period of 4 years, subject to Sama’s right to accelerate the expiration of the warrant.
The issue price per unit is CAD0.315 Canadian dollars. It is expected that after completing the subscriptions to IFC and the other 2, there will be 66,013,174 Sama common shares outstanding and IFC will directly hold approximately 6.01% of the outstanding share capital and approximately 11.34% of the outstanding share capital if it exercises all its warrants
About Sama Resources
Sama is a growth-oriented resource company focused on exploring and developing nickel-copper-sulphide and laterite resources in West Africa. Its goal is to become the first poly-metallic producer in the region along side its joint venture partner SODEMI (Société pour le Développement Minier de Côte d’Ivoire – www.sodemi.ci). Its key assets are Samapleu project in Côte d’Ivoire and Lola project in Guinea, both in exploration phase. Future production from Samapleu will be managed by a joint venture controlled 66⅔% by Sama Nickel Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sama, and 33⅓% by SODEMI. The licence encompasses 449 square kilometres and hosts nickel-copper and nickel-cobalt rich laterite deposits, and the newly discovered massive chromites occurrences.
The Lola project is 100% owned by Sama and encompasses 1,212 square kilometres adjacent to the Samapleu project. The Lola project has strong potential for nickel and copper mineralization and nickel-cobalt rich laterite.