– CANADA, Calgary – Mkango Resources Ltd. (AIM / TSXV:MKA) today announced a restructuring of its board to reflect the increasingly international scope of the Company’s activities, markets and shareholders, and in light of its progression towards development of the Songwe Hill rare earths project in Malawi.
Susan Muir has been appointed to the Board as Non-executive Director with immediate effect. Ms Muir is a highly experienced investor relations executive, with over 30 years’ experience in the mining sector and in capital markets. She is based in Toronto and was formerly Vice President, Investor Communications at Barrick Gold Corporation.
Sandra du Toit has been appointed to the Board as Non-executive Director with immediate effect. Ms du Toit is a highly experienced investment banker based in Johannesburg and has advised on numerous transactions in the African mining and finance space. She is currently Executive Vice President with Standard Bank.
Shaun Treacy has been appointed as a consultant to the Company and will be nominated to join the Board as Non-executive Director at the upcoming shareholders meeting of the Company. Mr Treacy is a senior strategic and financial adviser. He is based in Sydney, Australia and is currently Chief Investment Officer for the private equity firm, Arete Capital Partners, and previously held senior investment banking positions with JPMorgan, Lehman Brothers, Nomura and UBS.
Mr Treacy and Ms du Toit will work closely with Mkango’s management and its strategic partner, Talaxis Limited, as the Company moves towards completion of a feasibility study for Songwe, followed by project finance and mine development, while Ms Muir’s experience and background will help to enhance the Company’s profile in the North American and other global markets.
Derek Linfield, Chairman, commented: “It’s my pleasure to welcome Sandra, Susan and Shaun to the Board. The appointment of our new directors further broadens the Company’s international footprint and global network, following the Company’s major transaction with Talaxis at the end of 2017.
“The Board is extremely appreciative of the contributions of David and Eugene who, over the last seven years, have played key roles in setting the strategic direction for the growth of the Company, enabling us to reach our current stage of development. The addition of the new Board members will bring complementary skill sets to those of the current Board and positions the Company for its transformation from an exploration company with an African-focused asset base into a development and production company.”
About Susan Muir
Susan Ann Muir is a seasoned Investor Relations executive based in Toronto, and was previously Vice President, Investor Communications at Barrick following a series of increasingly senior roles since 2007. She was, most recently, Vice President, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications at Arizona Mining, which she joined in August, 2016. Prior to Barrick, Susan also has 25 years of experience analyzing and covering large and small cap precious metals equities, respectively, for several major Canadian investment banks. Ms. Muir holds a Bachelor of Arts from Concordia University.
About Sandra du Toit
Sandra du Toit has been with Standard Bank for over 10 years where, having previously been the Head of Corporate Finance for Mining, she now focuses on complex, cross-border African transactions in mining and metals, from an advisory, capital markets and funding perspective. Sandra started her career as an academic at the University of the Free State, lecturing on company law and tax law, before joining Johannesburg law firm Brink Cohen le Roux & Roodt. After graduating with an undergraduate degree in accounting and tax, and a Master’s degree in law, she became involved in the mining industry, working first on the labour side of the business before moving on to the corporate and commercial end of practice.
About Shaun Treacy
Shaun Treacy is currently Chief Investment Officer for Arete Capital Partners, and was previously a senior investment banker with JPMorgan (head of Metals and Mining advisory for Europe, Middle East and Africa and Head of Natural Resources in Australia), Lehman Brothers (Global head of Metals and Mining), Nomura (Global Co-Head of Natural Resources and Power) and UBS (Co-Head of All Industries Group for Asia and Vice Chairman of the Global Metals and Mining Group) and worked as a corporate finance adviser at Coopers & Lybrand. Shaun has lived and worked in Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom and Hong Kong, holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Queensland, a Graduate Diploma of Applied Finance & Investment, is an Associate of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia and is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
About Mkango Resources Limited
Mkango’s primary business is exploration for rare earth elements and associated minerals in the Republic of Malawi, a country whose hospitable people have earned it a reputation as “the warm heart of Africa”. The Company holds interests in three exclusive prospecting licenses in Malawi, the Phalombe licence, the Thambani licence and the Chimimbe Hill licence.
The main exploration target in the Company’s 80%-held Phalombe licence is the Songwe Hill Rare Earths Project, which features carbonatite-hosted rare earth mineralisation and was subject to previous exploration in the late 1980s. Mkango completed an updated Pre-Feasibility Study for the project in November 2015 and a feasibility study (the “Feasibility Study”) is currently underway, the initial phases of which include a major drilling programme.
Under the terms of an agreement with Talaxis, Talaxis agreed to fully fund the Feasibility Study by investing £12 million for a 49% interest in the Songwe Project (via Mkango subsidiary Lancaster Exploration Ltd). Talaxis will also have the option to acquire a further 26% interest by arranging funding for project development, including funding the equity component thereof. If Talaxis exercises its option, Mkango will retain a 25% interest in Songwe, free carried to production. To-date, Talaxis has invested £5 million, which is funding the initial phase of the Feasibility Study, for a 20% interest in the project with Mkango holding 80%.
Talaxis also agreed to invest a further £2 million to acquire a 49% interest in Maginito Ltd, a new subsidiary of Mkango focused on neodymium alloy powders, magnets and other technologies. This includes the collaboration with Metalysis Ltd announced in September 2017, which is focused on advanced alloys using neodymium or praseodymium with other elements for permanent magnet manufacturing. Permanent magnets are critical materials for most electric vehicles, direct drive wind turbines and many other high growth applications. Neodymium is a key rare earth component at Songwe. To date, Talaxis has invested £1 million for a 24.5% interest in Maginito with Mkango holding 75.5%.
The main exploration targets in Mkango’s remaining two 100% held licences are, in the Thambani licence, uranium, niobium, tantalum and zircon and, in the Chimimbe Hill licence, nickel and cobalt.
For more information : http://www.mkango.ca
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