The Taurus Mining Fund, a global fund manager based in Sydney, Australia, and the IFC have agreed terms in principle to provide $162.5 million in secured debt to refinance and expand the Kipoi Copper Project, a brownfield project in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Katanga Province which is operated by a subsidiary Australian Stock Exchange-listed copper developer and producer Tiger Resources.
Under the terms of the deal, Taurus Mining Fund will provide $122 million of the debt, with the balance of $40.5 million being provided by the IFC. The facility provides for an interest-only period until January 31, 2017, can be repaid without penalty at any time and has a 99 month term, expiring January 31, 2024. The first draw down of the facility which is subject to the commitment of the financing is expected to be in December 2015.
Once finalized the debt facility will refinance existing debt facilities, which include rolling over an existing $100 million, short-term, Taurus Fund loan into the longer term financing. It will also provide expansion capital to increase capacity of the Company’s SXEW plant from 25,000tpa to 32,500tpa copper cathode.
The Kipoi Copper Project is operated by Société d’Exploitation de Kipoi, or SEK, a full subsidiary of Tiger Resources following its acquisition in October 2014. The Project is based in the central part of the Katanga Copper belt, some 75kms north-west of Lubumbashi, the capital of Katanga Province. The site is adjacent to the main rail, road and power lines running between Lubumbashi, Likasi and Kolwezi on the copper belt.
The IFC has obtained credit committee approval for the deal and awaits final approval from its Board of Directors required 30-day public disclosure period. The Board is expected to meet on November 23rd, 2015. Taurus has completed its required due diligence and credit approval processes.