Kimberley Diamonds Ltd. (ASX:KDL) announced that it has completed the acquisition of Mantle Diamonds Ltd., which owns the Botswana-based Lerala diamond mine.
Lerala, which is currently on care and maintenance, contains probable reserves of 8.38 million tonnes with an average grade of 29.68 carats per hundred tonnes.
The acquisition provides a variety of benefits, including:
- Lerala will target a production rate of approximately 400,000 carats per annum (cpa)
- Increases KDL’s potential marketable production of gem and near-gem quality diamonds from current production of 120,000 cpa, to more than 700,000 cpa. It is estimated that the recently announced reopening of the Ellendale E4 mine will contribute 200,000 carats in the 2015 calendar year, based on an annualised treatment rate of 2.8 Mt per year, while Lerala is expected to contribute 400,000 cpa.
- Second acquisition of a near-term production diamond mining asset within a year, following the recent purchase of the Argyle Smoke Creek Alluvial Diamond Project
- International expansion of asset base Entry into Botswana, Africa’s largest producer of diamonds, providing further acquisition opportunities
- Interests in two joint venture exploration projects in Canada managed by Diavik Diamond Mines and free carried during the ongoing exploration phase