Proactiveinvestors RSS feed en Mon, 16 Jul 2018 18:25:24 -0400 Genera CMS (Proactiveinvestors) (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Champion climbs after Quebec commits $20 mln for new Labrador Trough rail line ]]> Champion Iron Ltd. (TSE:CIA), an iron ore exploration and development company, climbed to the highest in a month after the Québec government committed up to $20 million to fund a feasibility study to determine the optimum rail option of a new rail link for iron ore miners in the Labrador Trough to access global markets.

Shares spiked to 40 Canadian cents, the highest intraday price since May 9, before trading at 39 Canadian cents, up 10 percent, at 9:48 a.m. in Toronto.

Champion, which has offices in Toronto, Montreal and Australia, welcomed the decision by the Ministère des Finances Québec in a statement today. 

Champion said the Québec government's feasibility study on a new rail line to reach ports to service global demand will serve to facilitate and enhance Québec based miners' ability to deliver to world markets.

Champion's Chairman Michael O'Keeffe said this is a significant decision that will lead to the creation of jobs and investment. "It will stimulate further investment into the region and help to establish Québec as a region of international significance for the mining industry."

In tabling the Budget 2014-2015 this week, the Québec Finance Minister Carlos Leitão announced a series of actions and measures to support mining development in Québec. Among these measures, the government has announced that it will evaluate the need for a new rail link to the Labrador Trough to determine the optimum features of the new infrastructure.

The government has set aside a maximum of $20 million from its Northern Plan Fund to contribute to a study to determine the optimum rail option for iron ore miners in the Labrador Trough region to reach ports to service international markets competitively.

It is intended that these funds be allocated towards evaluating the anticipated transportation needs between the Labrador Trough and the port of Sept-Îles. The study will consider the concerns of all potential users and in doing so ensure a multi-user system favoring the conclusion of joint investment, Champion said.

"At a time of uncertainty in investment markets regarding the outlook for iron ore, this decision will be seen as a defining point in the history of the mining industry in Québec," O'Keeffe said. "The government should be congratulated on its commitment to promote an initiative conducive to increased employment and new investment."

There is a high level of interest in the Labrador Trough as the world's major steel industry groups already see the potential of the region to supply high quality iron ore product, with a range of listed and private iron ore groups active in the region, including Champion Iron.

The Labrador Trough hosts one of the world's largest iron ore accumulations, with annual production of some 50 million tonnes. Global majors including Arcelor Mittal (NYSE:MT) and Rio Tinto (NYSE:RIO) have assets in the region, while WISCO, Mitsubishi, Posco, Tata Steel, Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF), Century Iron Mines (TSE:FER) Alderon Iron Ore (TSE:ADV), China Steel and Hebei Iron & Steel are also involved in joint venture partnerships in the wider region.

Shares of Alderon Iron rose 2.8% to C$1.45 in Toronto on Friday. Century Iron's shares were unchanged at 53 cents. 

Fri, 06 Jun 2014 10:20:00 -0400
<![CDATA[News - Champion Iron Mines strikes merger with O'Keeffe's Mamba Minerals ]]> Champion Iron Mines (TSE:CHM) has agreed to merge with Australian-listed Mamba Minerals (ASX:MAB) in an all-share deal that values the company at C$59.8 million. 

The deal will create a new iron company to be named Champion Iron Limited that will trade both in Australia and Toronto, giving it access to a broader investor base. 

Under the terms of the transaction, Champion shareholders will get 11 ordinary Mamba shares in exchange for every 15 shares of Champion, valuing Champion at 39 Canadian cents per share. Champion closed on Thursday at 27.5 cents, rising 22% in Friday morning deals to 33.5 cents. 

Once the deal is closed -- expected in April of next year -- Champion shareholders will own about 50.5% of Mamba's pro forma issued share capital, the parties said. 

Champion said the merger will provide a strengthened balance sheet, with enough funds for the completion of the bankable feasibility study at its Fire Lake North project in Quebec, as well as key mining execs like the addition of mining entrepreneur Michael O'Keeffe as executive chairman. O'Keeffe, Mamba's current chairman, sold his previous coal venture to Rio Tinto for $4 billion.

The deal will also bring substantial exploration upside in the form of the Snelgrove Lake project in the Labrador Trough region in Canada, a potential multi-billion tonne magnetite property.

As a precondition to the merger, Mamba must raise at least A$10 million through an equity financing, to be completed immediately following the closing date of the deal, at a price of at least A$0.50 per share. The pro forma company will have a cash balance of about C$25 million in the bank, the miners said. 

"This merger represents an excellent opportunity for Champion shareholders to realize immediate and substantial value by exchanging their Champion shares for Mamba shares and yet retain the opportunity to participate in the development of the Consolidated Fire Lake North project," said Champion president and CEO Thomas Larsen in a statement Friday.

"Mr. O'Keeffe and his team at Mamba have an outstanding track record in developing and financing bulk commodity infrastructure projects, and I am excited at the opportunity to work with Mr. O'Keeffe to deliver the significant value and potential that we confirmed in the Consolidated Fire Lake North Project."

O'Keeffe will transition to executive chairman of the combined company, while Larsen will become the CEO. 

O'Keeffe said the immediate focus at Fire Lake will be to upgrade the prefeasibility study done earlier this year to a bankable feasibility report, which is expected in the next year. 

"At the same time we will be positioning the merged group to be able to access or develop the infrastructure required to fund and put this project into production, and there is a real opportunity here to join the ranks of Canada's existing iron ore producers," added O'Keeffe. 

The new board will comprise of eight directors, including five nominees from Champion and three from Mamba. The deal requires regulatory and shareholder approvals, with about 7% of stockholders from each company already agreeing to vote in favour of the merger. 

Fri, 06 Dec 2013 10:43:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Iron Mines says latest drill results from Fire Lake bring it closer to reserve target goal ]]>  

Canada-focused Champion Iron Mines (TSE:CHM) saw its shares pop over 10 per cent on Wednesday, after unveiling the remaining drill results from its Fire Lake North project in Northeastern Quebec.

Shares of the company were up four cents as at about 11:45 a.m. EDT, trading at 42.5 cents.

The company said that the results from the West Deposit area of the Fire Lake project were not available when it released its updated resource estimate and preliminary feasibility study (PFS) earlier this year. 

Highlights from the remaining drill holes include hole FW12-58, located at the north end of the West Deposit, which intersected 161.6 metres of “high grade” specular hematite iron formation grading 34.3% Total Iron (FeT). 

Meanwhile, hole FW12-57 hit 84 metres grading 33.6% FeT, and hole FW12-62B returned 19.56 metres grading 36.2% FeT and 43.92 metres grading 31.8% FeT.

Champion said the resource remains open down-dip to the west and along strike to the north and will potentially add to all categories of resources while expanding the West Deposit pit shell.

“The results from the remaining holes completed in our 2012 drilling program provide us with added confidence that we can delineate sufficient additional reserves at the project's West and East deposits to produce 20 million tonnes of iron concentrate annually from two concentrator lines over a minimum of 20 years, for inclusion in our feasibility study later this year,” said president and CEO Tom Larsen.

“These and additional results from our trenching program that were received subsequent to the current mineral resource estimate and PFS move us closer to achieving our reserve target goal."

Champion said it also received results for an extensive surface trenching and channel sampling program over the East Deposit, which could potentially upgrade a portion of current shallow inferred resources to the measured and indicated categories.

Additional trenching is now being planned for the 2013 summer field season to further define and upgrade near-surface resources underlying the north-western limit of the East Deposit.

In January, the company released the updated mineral resource estimate for the Fire Lake North project with combined, in-pit optimized, measured and indicated resources totalling 691.3 million tonnes grading 31.5% FeT with additional inferred resources of 479.8 million tonnes grading 30.4% FeT, at a 15% FeT cut-off grade.

Champion's recently completed preliminary economic study, released earlier this month, included 464.6 million tonnes grading 32.4% FeT of proven and probable reserves sufficient to produce an average of 9.3 million tonnes of iron concentrate annually for an estimated 19.6-year mine life. 

The company is focused on developing its significant iron resources in the provinces of Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador. It holds a 100% interest in the Fermont Iron Holdings and a 44% interest in the Attikamagen iron project located in both Quebec and Labrador. 


Wed, 20 Feb 2013 11:52:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals hits over 34% iron at O'Keefe-Purdy in Quebec ]]> Champion Minerals (TSE:CHM) said Wednesday it intersected over 34 percent iron at its O'Keefe-Purdy project in Quebec.

Today's results are from 15 of the 23 holes, totaling 5,901 metres, drilled on the property. Assays remain for another eight drill holes.

Significant assays from the program intersected 124.0 metres grading 34.13 percent iron, including 109.0 metres grading 37.04 percent iron, in OP11-06 on the Nord-ouest occurrence.

OP11-08, also on the Nord-ouest occurrence, intersected 155.56 metres at 29.65 percent iron, including 34.45 metres grading 31.84 percent iron, and including 87.4 metres at 37.12 percent iron.

Champion Minerals' president and CEO Tom Larsen said: "We've only scratched the surface of what is required to identify the full resource potential at our expansive O'Keefe-Purdy Project.

"Of particular interest however, is the similarity of the coarser grained mineralization we've encountered to our Fire Lake North Project.

"With over 900 million tonnes of in-pit resources at Fire Lake North and suggested potential to produce over 16 million tonnes of high quality sinter feed concentrate annually for over 20 years, our decision to divert our exploration efforts from O'Keefe-Purdy and other projects and fast-track Fire Lake North to feasibility was necessary.

"Clearly the O'Keefe-Purdy Project has significant resource potential with characteristically favourable qualities to further enhance the Company's future growth potential. We will complete the remaining required drilling at O'Keefe-Purdy at our earliest opportunity in 2012."

Assays from the Nord-est occurrence include OP11-01, which intersected 115.3 metres grading 31.73 percent iron, and OP11-04, which hit 89.77 metres at 33.03 percent iron. OP11-15 on the central area intersected 62.2 metres at 23.95% iron, including 22.91 metres at 32.71 percent iron.

Covering about 95.3 square kilometres, the O'Keefe-Purdy property is located about 20 kilometres northwest of Champion's flagship Fire Lake North project in the Fermont Iron Ore district of Quebec.

It is also one of 17 properties that make up Champion's Fermont Holdings, in which it holds an 82.5 percent interest, with Fancamp Exploration (CVE:FNC) holding the remaining 17.5 percent.

Champion said that three other properties in its Fermont Holdings - Fire Lake North, Bellechasse, and Harvey-Tuttle - host a combined NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate of 400 million tonnes grading 30.6 percent iron in the measured and indicated category, and 1.82 billion tonnes grading 25.4 percent iron in the inferred category.

In Toronto, Champion shares rose 6.67 percent to $1.28, as of 11:42 am EDT.

Wed, 30 Nov 2011 12:36:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals given "strong buy" rating and $3.50 target from Fraser Mackenzie ]]> Capital markets firm Fraser Mackenzie has initiated coverage on Champion Minerals (TSE:CHM) with a "strong buy" rating and a $3.50 per share price target.

In a research note, Fraser Mackenzie mining analyst Wojtek Nowak said that the Canada-focused explorer was a "promising iron ore development story".

Champion Minerals is an iron ore exploration and development company with properties in Canada’s premier iron ore district, the Labrador Trough. Core properties near Fermont, Quebec contain an estimated 2.2 billion tonnes of iron ore resources grading 26 percent iron, as well as 620 million tonnes of non-NI 43-101 historical resources grading 30.5 percent iron.

A 60,000 metre drilling program is currently underway at Fermont - which literally means "Iron Mountain" in French - expected to upgrade and increase the resource.

Champion’s most advanced project is Fire Lake North in Quebec, where a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) was completed in 2010 for a mine and concentrator designed to produce 7 million tonnes per year of hematite concentrate.

According to Fraser Mackenzie's Nowak, key catalysts for Champion's stock include a forthcoming updated PEA in November, a potential offtake or joint venture agreement with a large partner, resource updates in the coming months, and a full feasibility study targeted for the second quarter of 2012.

Nowak said Champion could also unlock value by selling non-core properties where iron ore resources are currently being defined - such as assets within Clusters 2 and 3 of the Fermont property.

"We think ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT) is the closest neighbour and the most logical taker for these properties," Nowak said.

A major source of upside, according to Nowak, would be the expansion of Fire Lake to 16 million tonnes per year.

"Given the smaller incremental capex requirement and potential to finance the expansion using debt and internal cash flows, we believe the returns to shareholders could be exceptional," Fraser Mackenzie's Nowak said.

The key risks to Champion Minerals' story include the overall level of iron ore prices, potentially high capex and execution risk associated with a planned rail link and access to rail and port capacity.

Champion is mitigating these risks by developing several infrastructure options in parallel, with an objective to maintain or reduce the capex per tonne of annual production outlined in the initial PEA, the research note said.

The Fraser Mackenzie analyst also noted it was possible that total production could be ramped up to 16 million tonnes per year during the first four years of operation "given the size of the resource".

Champion Minerals was up 0.7 percent Tuesday afternoon at $1.38.

Tue, 15 Nov 2011 12:52:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals rallies on latest results from Moire Lake iron project ]]> Toronto-based Champion Minerals (TSE:CHM) rallied over 5% after it announced Thursday the latest drill results from its Moire Lake iron ore project in Quebec, located just east of steel giant ArcelorMittal's Mont Wright Mine.

The company said drill hole LM11-12 returned 503.4 metres grading 31.2% total iron on the southeast side of the historic Lac Moire occurence.

Drill hole, LM11-16, located approximately 400 metres northeast and along strike of drill hole LM11-12, intersected 390.1 metres grading 27.6% total iron, and included an interval of 237.1 metres grading 31.5% total iron.

In addition, LM11-09, located roughly 400 metres northeast of LM11-16, found 383.4 metres of iron formation grading 30.3% total iron.

These three drill holes delineate approximately one kilometre of iron formation along strike, Champion said, with down-hole intersections of 383 metres to 503 metres.

Champion's president and CEO, Tom Larsen, commented, "The latest results from our 2011 drill program at Moire Lake further confirm the high grade and continuity of the iron formations present on the property which is strategically located in the Labrador Trough.

"The combined thickness and assay results from Moire Lake are significant and we expect the new resource estimate will identify a sizeable increase in the historical resource."

Champion said previously it plans to drill a northeast-trending linear magnetic anomaly underlying the eastern part of the Moire Lake project, where recent prospecting located outcrop containing specular-hematite and magnetite iron mineralization in zones up to 40 metres wide.

Permits are pending for this additional planned drilling, with this element of the exploration program deferred until 2012, Champion said. The final 2011 drill hole is in-progress, and is being drilled on the same section as LM11-12.

A total of 21 drill holes, totalling approximately 9,325 metres, will be completed in 2011 at the Moire Lake project.

Champion is preparing samples for initial metallurgical tests, and once the remaining assay results are received in early November, it will begin an NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate, with results expected later in the fourth quarter.

The company plans to initiate a preliminary economic assessment for the Moire Lake project once the resource is completed.

Champion's Fermont Holdings comprise of 17 properties, three of which - Fire Lake North, Bellechasse and Harvey-Tuttle - host combined, NI 43-101 compliant, estimated measured and indicated resources of 400 Million tonnes grading 30.6% iron and inferred resources of 1.82 billion tonnes grading 25.4% iron, at a 15% total iron cut-off.

Seven of Champion's remaining fourteen properties contain combined historical mineral resources totalling 620 million tonnes grading 31% iron.

The company's shares were up 4.4% late Thursday, to trade at 94 cents as of 2:36pm EDT.

Thu, 06 Oct 2011 15:04:00 -0400
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals announces high grade results at Fire Lake iron ore property ]]> Champion Minerals (TSE:CHM) announced Monday high grade drill results from the company's Fire Lake North iron ore project in northeastern Quebec

Last fall, the company completed a premilinary economic assessment and a mineral resource estimate of the project.

In the West Limb designed pit area, drill hole FLN10-34 intersected 123 metres of hematite rich iron formation at 34.1% total iron (Fe).  Hole FLN10-40 returned 58.9 metres grading 33.4% Fe, with a second intersection further down hole assaying 61.75 metres at 30.1% Fe.

In addition, hole FLN11-47, drilled at the northern limits of the West Limb pit, intersected 85.65 metres at 36.4% Fe, extending the strike length of the zone 200 metres further north.

Meanwhile, at the East Limb pit, the company intersected similar iron formation, with hole FLN10-36 returning 74.2 metres at 30.2% Fe and hole FLN10-38 assaying 92.81 metres at 26.1% Fe.

Champion said that infill drilling at each of the pit areas could potentially increase resources and significantly reduce strip ratios in the designed open pits used for the initial PEA, which could in turn improve the project's economics.

The company also said it completed exploratory drilling in the northeast area of the property, with the best results being hole FLN10-26, which returned 35.6 metres at 30.4% Fe, and hole FLN10-31, which intersected 21.3 metres at 30.4% Fe.

To date, Champion has completed almost 50% of the planned 17,500 metres of drilling for 2011. When all the results are available, the company will release an update of the inferred mineral resource estimate as well as a new preliminary economic assessment. Currently, Fire Lake has 388 million tonnes of inferred resources grading 28.9% Fe.

Champion's Fire Lake property is part of its Fermont Property Holdings, which are comprised of seventeen different projects. A fully-funded 60,000m drilling program is scheduled on nine projects within these holdings in 2011.

Mon, 07 Mar 2011 09:13:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals close proximity to Consolidated Thompson increases speculation of takeover ]]> Iron ore exploration play Champion Minerals (TSX:CHM) released more drill results from its most recent discovery today, but a strong recent run in the company’s share price is more likely attributed to rising iron ore prices combined with recent takeover activity in Canada’s junior iron ore sector.

The company released results from the Harvey-Tuttle Claim Blocks, which are part of the larger Fermont Iron Property in north-eastern Quebec.  Highlights included 168 meters averaging just over 30% iron, with some 12,000 meters of drilling intersecting “multiple significant iron formation intervals”. 

The project lies immediately west of Consolidated Thompson Iron Mines Lamlee Property.  Consolidated Thompson announced just yesterday that it is to be acquired by its larger acquisitive peer Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE: CLF) for $4.9 billion, though share price action in Consolidated Thompson after the announcement suggests the market sees potential for another buyer to enter the fray.

At Fermont, Champion has already delineated a resource of 603 million tonnes grading 29% iron from the Bellechasse and Fire Lake North Projects.  An updated resource to include drilling from Harvey-Tuttle is expected in the first quarter of 2011

"Positive results from the Fire Lake North Preliminary Economic Assessment (released November 3, 2010) bode well for the rest of the portfolio of claim blocks in the area, including Harvey-Tuttle, that generally have not been explored in several decades,” Thomas Larsen, President and CEO of Champion, stated.

“With the addition of NI 43-101 compliant Mineral Resource Estimates at Harvey-Tuttle in Q1-2011, Champion is in the enviable position of defining significant Mineral Resources at a time of growing iron ore demand."

Shares in the company slipped 7% today, but have risen from less than $1.00 per share to $2.80 in just a few months, underscoring strong demand for Canadian iron ore plays in a sector that is seeing considerable merger and acquisition activity.

Thu, 13 Jan 2011 18:07:00 -0500
<![CDATA[News - Champion Minerals receives PEA for Fire Lake North in Quebec with projected IRR of 25% ]]> Champion Minerals (TSX: CHM; FSX: P02) announced today a positive preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for its Fire Lake North project in northeastern Quebec, with an IRR of nearly 25%.

Fire Lake North is located adjacent to the operating Fire Lake Mine owned by ArcelorMittal, and is 60 km to the south of Consolidated Thompson's Bloom Lake Mine. It is situated within the Labrador Trough of northeastern Quebec and western Labrador, also known as the Fermont-Wabush-Labrador City Iron Ore District.

The report, completed by engineering firm BBA, showed the project had a net present value of US$1.637 billion, at a cash flow discount rate of 5%, based on an iron concentrate production rate of 7 million tonnes per year at a grade of 65%.

The expected mine life is 14 years, with capital expenditures totaling US$ 890.90 million for a payback period of 2.8 years.

Based on the results, the company said that a feasibility study is being planned for next year. The ongoing 15,000m drilling campaign at the site has the potential to "enhance the project's economics", Champion said, if it increases the mineral resources and production profile, which could result in higher net present value and extend the mine life.

"We now have the potential for a viable project with significant upside potential. This illustrates that in today’s context our portfolio of properties has excellent short and long term growth potential for development of high quality iron ore," said president and CEO Tom Larsen.

The current resource estimate for the project is 388 million tonnes grading 29% total iron. The PEA, which is based on a stand-alone operation and does not consider the Bellechasse adjacent property, has an accuracy of approximately 30%, and the numbers were calculated with a cut-off grade of 10% iron.

Bellechasse is located 12km to the northwest of Fire Lake North. The combined Fire Lake North and Bellechasse inferred mineral resources estimates total 603 million tonnes grading 29% total iron.

At Fire Lake North, Champion said it is aiming to increase the mine life from 14 to 25 plus years and to demonstrate the potential for a higher concentrate production rate at Fire Lake North, Bellechasse and/or from the company's other claim blocks in the area.

Lake North, Bellechasse and fourteen other claim blocks form part of the 642 km2 Fermont Iron property, which is 82.5% owned by Champion, with its joint venture partner Fancamp Exploration (TSX-V: FNC) owning the remaining 17.5% interest.

Wed, 03 Nov 2010 16:24:00 -0400