Acacia Gives Barrick 10 Days To Mull Competent Persons Report

(Alliance News) - Acacia Mining PLC said Tuesday a competent persons report, prepared by an industry consultant, has valued its shares at 271 pence each.

Shares in the miner closed 1.6% higher in London at 181.30p each.

Acacia is currently facing a takeover offer from Toronto-listed gold mining giant Barrick Gold Corp.

Barrick owns 64% of Acacia and has offered USD285 million for the rest, though the two have not yet come to an agreement.

Barrick is offering 0.153 new Barrick share per Acacia share, valuing Acacia at USD787 million, giving Acacia shares an implied value of 146p.

Following the report, Barrick requested an extension to the deadline to make a firm offer for Acacia - which was Tuesday at 1700 BST.

Acacia has requested the deadline be extended by 10 days, to July 19.

"The board continues to believe that, subject to the price offered being fair and commanding the necessary support from shareholders, Barrick acquiring the remaining shares in Acacia it does not currently own would be an attractive solution for key stakeholders," added Acacia.

The report carried out by SRK Consulting included a site visit to all of Acacia's operating mines and an assessment of Acacia's 2018 mineral resource and ore reserves.

SRK's value scenarios assumed constant real commodity prices of USD1,300 per ounce for gold and long term prices of USD17.25 per ounce for silver and USD2.97 per pound for copper.

These scenarios, which Acacia said supports its own life of mine plans, value the company at between 271p and 281p per share. The lowest value scenario, which Acacia considers "highly conservative" values the company at 203p per share.

Acacia has been under a cloud ever since the Tanzanian government in 2017 banned all exports of metal concentrate in an effort to keep processing activities in the country. This has been problematic for Acacia as all three of its producing mines - Buzwagi, Bulyanhulu and North Mara - are located in Tanzania.

Acacia, which is not party to the talks, said the Tanzania government has warned it will not sign any resolution if Acacia is one of the counterparties to the agreements.

On Tuesday, Acacia said: "As stated consistently over the course of the last two years, Acacia's preferred outcome remains the achievement of a negotiated settlement of its disputes with the government of Tanzania (howsoever negotiated or achieved), this being a settlement that would allow for the lifting of the export ban and resumption of full operations at Bulyanhulu, whilst continuing to operate at North Mara and Buzwagi in the ordinary course.

"Acacia's desire for a negotiated settlement is part of the company's long-term commitment to support Tanzania, its people and the mining industry going forward. In this regard, in the event that the transaction committee of the board were in a position to recommend, in due course, that the Acacia minority shareholders vote in favour of a Barrick offer, Acacia would seek to discuss appropriate steps for a stay of the arbitration with Tanzania and the arbitration tribunal."

By Paul McGowan

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