Bens Creek raises $6m to fund future acquisitions
Metallurgical coal miner Bens Creek has agreed to issue a second convertible loan note to raise an additional $6m (£4.41m), it announced on Friday, to finance future acquisitions.
The AIM-traded firm said the note was being issued to ACAM, with terms “broadly the same” as the first convertible loan note it issued on 14 December.
It said the differences were the conversion price, which was set at 40p per new share, and the interest rate, which was reduced to 12% per annum from 15%.
The board said the net proceeds of the note would be primarily used to finance future acquisition opportunities, designed to enhance the company's existing metallurgical coal reserves and expand its infrastructure capabilities.
As it said in its admission document in October, Bens Creek’s strategy included acquiring metallurgical coal assets in North America, including evaluating prospective new leases and seeking royalty and additional infrastructure arrangements on neighbouring properties to the existing Bens Creek property.
While the company was in “active discussions” on a number of possible acquisitions, no terms had yet been agreed.
“We are very pleased to put in place a further, unsecured convertible loan facility with such a reputable institutional partner,” said chief executive officer Adam Wilson.
“This funding will provide us with the financial strength to make focussed added value acquisitions.
“The conversion price of the second convertible loan note at 40p is at a significant premium to both the initial public offering issue price of 10p in October, and the 28p conversion price of the first note issued on 14 December.
“The board believes [this] demonstrates ACAM's investment appetite, confidence and support for the company.”
Wilson said the support for the firm’s approach to the market by investors had been “great”, with management “particularly appreciative” of the confidence shown by ACAM.
“Having moved into initial production at the existing Bens Creek site in West Virginia at the beginning of December and subsequently completed first deliveries to our offtake partner, Integrity Coal Sales, the focus of the Bens Creek management team and operational staff remains to make further progress with production and enhance our programme of shipping metallurgical coal.”
At 1433 GMT, shares in Bens Creek Group were up 10.71% at 53.14p.
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