Our roundup of Canadian small-caps of between $100-million and $2.5-billion in market capitalization making news and on the move today.
Zijin Mining Group Co Ltd, one of China’s biggest gold miners, has agreed to buy Canadian miner Continental Gold Inc (CNL-T) for $1.33-billion, saying the purchase would increase its gold reserves and boost cash flow as well as profit.
Zijin will pay $5.50 per share in cash for Continental, a premium of about 13 per cent to the Canadian company’s closing price on Friday, as it aims to secure Continental Gold’s flagship Buriticá gold project, the Chinese company said in a filing to the Shanghai Stock Exchange.
The Buriticá gold project has measured and indicated gold reserves of 165.47 tonnes and an inferred reserve of 187.24 tonnes, Zijin said.
Continental chief executive officer Arti Sussman said the project is expected to reach production next year and the “timing is right for Continental to sell to a more experienced mine operator.”
Zijin expects its gold reserves to exceed 2,000 tonnes after the purchase, with output eventually increasing by about 20 per cent. It expects the Buriticá gold project to generate “robust” profit and cash flow after becoming operational in 2020. The deal is, however, restricted by external conditions and faces uncertainty, Zijin said, without giving further details.
Monday’s announcement comes after Zijin said in early November it would buy partner Freeport McMoran Inc’s copper-gold assets in Serbia for up to $390 million, in an effort to boost its resources of both metals.
“This is a significant strategic step forward for New Look Vision with our first participation in the U.S. retail optical market through the acquisition of a high quality established and promising business in the large and growing Florida market," stated CEO Antoine Amiel.
New Look said the combined entity will have a store network consisting of 390 locations, "reinforcing New Look Vision’s position as the largest Canadian retail optical company and as a growing player in North America overall." The price of the acquisition wasn't disclosed in the release.
Liberty Gold Corp. (LGD-T) announced a purchase option agreement for the sale of its 79.1-per-cent interest in the Kinsley Mountain Gold project in northwest Nevada, to Barrian Mining Corp. (BARI-X) Liberty Gold said it will receive an aggregate of over US$7.5-million in value for Kinsley in three stages over a two-year period.
NFI Group Inc. (NFI-T) announced Pipasu Soni as the company’s next chief financial officer. Mr. Soni joins as executive vice president of finance effective immediately and will take on the additional role of CFO before March 30, the company stated. Mr. Soni will succeed Glenn Asham who is retiring after 28 years at the company, 15 of which were as CFO. Most recently, Mr. Soni served as an officer of United States Steel Corp. in a variety of financial leadership roles, the company said.
Roots Corp. (ROOT-T) announced that Mona Kennedy has been named its chief financial officer, effective by the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2020. She joins Roots from Indigo Books & Music Inc. (IDG-T) where she was vice president of finance.
Ms. Kennedy is assuming the role from Meghan Roach, managing director at Searchlight Capital Partners, who has been acting as interim CFO since Aug. 9.
4Front Ventures Corp. (FFNT-C) reported revenue of US$4.5-million in the third quarter, up from US$575,144 for the same quarter a year ago. Its net loss was US$6.9-million versus a loss of US$2.6-million a year ago.
"These reported results reflect the initial consolidation of 4Front and Cannex operations...," CEO Josh Rosen stated in a release.
Its net loss was $6.9-million or 3 cents per share versus a loss of $3.8-million or a penny per share a year ago.
The company also said it expects to report revenues of between $10-million to $12-million for the third quarter and between $12-million to $14-million for the fourth quarter.
Kinross Gold Corp. (K-T; KGC-N) announced that it’s selling its royalty portfolio to Maverix Metals Inc. (MMX-T) for US$74 million, which includes US$25 million in cash and approximately 11.2 million Maverix common shares, representing a 9.4-per-cent ownership interest in Maverix.
“This agreement realizes the value of our royalty portfolio today while also providing upside exposure through a meaningful equity position in Maverix, a company with a proven track record of growth,” said Kinross CEO Paul Rollinson.
Just Energy Group Inc. (JE-T; JE-N) announced today that it has amended its senior secured credit facility to increase the senior debt to EBITDA covenant ratio from 1.50:1 to 2.00:1 for the third quarter of fiscal 2020. It has also amended the covenants on its senior unsecured term loan facility to increase the senior debt to EBITDA covenant ratio from 1.65:1 to 2.15:1 for the third quarter of fiscal 2020. “Both changes are effective only for the third quarter of Fiscal 2020 and the covenants will revert to the prior levels following December 31, 2019,” the company stated.
In connection with the amendments, the company said it's immediately suspending dividends on the Series A preferred shares. However, it says those dividends will continue to accrue during the suspension period. "Any dividend payment following the suspended period will be credited against the earliest accumulated but unpaid dividend," the company stated.
The company also said its previously announced strategic review "remains active and is progressing."
Catalyst Capital Group Inc. has extended a deadline for the board of Hudson’s Bay Co. (HBC-T) to formally accept its offer letter until 5 p.m. ET today. The investment firm has made an unsolicited offer of $11 per share in cash for HBC, topping a friendly offer of $10.30 made by a group of investors led by HBC executive chairman Richard Baker.
Catalyst says it extended the deadline at the request of a special committee of the board at HBC because of what it called "indications of positive progress." The special committee has said it would review the offer in consultation with its independent financial and legal advisers.
-The Canadian Press