TORONTO — Centerra Gold Inc. is looking to expand its North American footprint by signing a deal to buy Gemfield Resources LLC and its Goldfield District Project in Nevada, one of the top mining jurisdictions in the world.
Under the deal with Waterton Nevada Splitter LLC, Centerra will pay a total of US$206.5 million including US$175 million in cash plus a US$31.5-million future milestone payment payable in cash or Centerra shares.
"The addition of this asset means more domiciled North American presence, and I think that’s going to be favourable in terms of underpinning robust valuations," Scott Perry, president and CEO of Centerra, said on a conference call Tuesday.
Goldfield is a conventional open-pit project in late-stage development with three deposits, according to Centerra.
Toronto-based Centerra said the project's significant potential comes from its large, underexplored land.
"We anticipate that when in operation, it’s going to represent meaningful future low-cost production, which will be very beneficial in terms of Centerra’s company-wide, medium-term organic growth," Perry said on the call.
Centerra operates two mines including the Mount Milligan Mine in B.C. and the Öksüt Mine in Turkey. The company told analysts that the Goldfield District Project is very similar to the Öksüt mine, which was delivered on time and under budget by Centerra.
"We’ve got a great opportunity to leverage our operational experience, our development experience, our exploration experience that we had at Öksüt, and really try to apply that here at the Gold District Project," Perry said.
Centerra says it has been conducting extensive due diligence on the project since 2020.
RBC Capital Markets analyst Michael Siperco said the acquisition is positive.
"The Goldfield project looks like a relatively low risk, low capital addition to the [Centerra] portfolio," he wrote in a note.
Centerra also owns the Kumtor Mine in the Kyrgyz Republic, but it is currently not under the company’s control amid an ongoing dispute with the Kyrgyz government.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 22, 2022.
Companies in this story: (TSX:CG)
The Canadian Press