Sandvik divests exploration business to Drillman
Sandvik has signed an agreement to divest its Exploration business to Drillman, a subsidiary of the M Group of companies, which is 100 percent owned and operated in Australia.
Drillman provide equipment and technical support to the Geotechnical, Mineral Exploration, Horizontal, Directional and Upstream Gas Drilling sectors, among others.
The deal, expected to close in Q4 2020, includes exploration rigs, consumables and production stock, along with selected trademarks and patents. The business is currently reported in Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology.
"I am pleased that we have signed an agreement to sell our Exploration business as this is in line with our focus to further improve the efficiency and profitability of our company," says Stefan Widing, President and CEO of Sandvik. "I believe we have found a good home for our Exploration business in Drillman, who will support in the further development of its operations and performance," says Henrik Ager, President of Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology.
"We are very excited to acquire Sandvik's Exploration business and look forward to collaborating throughout the transition. The acquisition forms part of our long-term strategy to expand our international footprint and we are eager to introduce our passion for the mining and exploration business into the global market," says Harry Mostert, CEO for M Group of Companies.
The parties did not disclose the price and the closing is subject to relevant regulatory approvals. The Exploration business will remain consolidated in the financial statements of Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology until closing of the transaction. In 2019, the Exploration business had revenues of about SEK 450 million and a margin slightly dilutive to Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology.
Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations
Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.
Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel
The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.
“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.
“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”
Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba
Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.
“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.
“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”
The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history. Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.
“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.