7 January 2010

Publication: Mining Weekly
Author: Esmarie Swanepoel

JSE-listed diversified minerals exploration and development company Sephaku Holdings will sell some of its gold and nickel assets to focus its attention on cement and fluorspar projects.

Cayman Islands-incorporated Mandra Capital and private investor Mong Seng Wu would acquire Sephaku’s 100% holding in Sephaku Gold Holdings, which holds a 26% stake in Taung Gold and a 26% interest in African Nickel Holdings for R80-million in cash.

Sephaku said in a statement on Thursday that the sale would make it a more focused company able to dedicate its resources to its core projects in cement and fluorspar.

Taung has two flagship projects, which were currently at an advanced stage of exploration, namely the Jeanette Hilton project in the Free State and the Evander project in Mpumalanga.

The company also has early stage assets held in the South Rand project in Gauteng.

African Nickel is exploring on three greenfield projects and two brownfield projects in South Africa.

Sephaku said that the sale would become effective in January and that it was subject to board approval from Taung and African Nickel.

Sephaku, through its 80,2%-owned cement subsidiary, plans to open a 1,2-million ton a year cement milling plant in Delmas, which will make it the first new entrant in the South African cement industry since 1934.

The group also announced late last year that it had completed a definitive feasibility study on a new fluorspar mine in Gauteng, which would produce 130 000 t/y of acid grade fluorspar by the second quarter of 2012.

Sephaku Holdings listed on the JSE in August.