THARISA PLC - Tharisa acquires a 90% shareholding in Salene Chrome Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited paving the way for access to Zimbabwes

Release Date: 16/05/2018 08:01
Code(s): THA
 
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Tharisa acquires a 90% shareholding in Salene Chrome Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited paving the way for access to Zimbabwe’s

Tharisa plc
(Incorporated in the Republic of Cyprus with limited liability)
(Registration number HE223412)
JSE share code: THA
LSE share code: THS
ISIN: CY0103562118
('Tharisa')


Tharisa acquires a 90% shareholding in Salene Chrome Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited paving the way for
access to Zimbabwe’s illuvial chrome deposits


Tharisa has acquired a 90% shareholding in Salene Chrome Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited (“Salene”) at the
par value thereof from the Leto Settlement Trust (“Leto”), a related party being the beneficial
shareholder of Medway Developments Limited, a material shareholder in Tharisa. The effective date
of the acquisition is 15 May 2018. Leto will retain a 10% free carried shareholding in Salene and be
entitled to a 3% royalty on the gross proceeds from the sale of the chrome concentrates produced.
Salene has been awarded three special grants under the Zimbabwe Mines and Minerals Act covering
an area of approximately 9 500 hectares (95 km2) on the eastern side of the Great Dyke in
Zimbabwe, which entitles it to mine the minerals thereon including illuvial chrome, being at surface
chrome fines generated from seams as a result of weathering.


A special grant is issued in terms of Chapter XIX of the Zimbabwe Mines and Minerals Act and
authorises the holder thereof to carry out mining operations for a specified mineral or minerals
(including chrome in this instance), over the specified area for a period of 24 months, with the right
of annual renewal on the expiry of such period on 90 days prior application. Salene intends applying
for the consolidation of the special grant areas into a mining lease area valid for the life of mine.


Salene is applying to the Zimbabwean government for National Project Status and for the special
grant areas to be contained within a proposed Special Economic Zone.


Based on available geological information and similar illuvial chrome mining activities in the region,
Tharisa considers this to be a highly prospective opportunity to meaningfully expand its chrome
mining interests. The terms of the acquisition agreement requiring nominal upfront payment,


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provides Tharisa with a low-cost entry into a promising growth project in a new mineral rich
geography.


While it is understood that certain geological exploration work has been undertaken on the special
grant areas to date, there is insufficient information available to be able to accurately quantify the
value of the net assets (being the special grants) or the profits attributable thereto, can be
determined or quantified at this stage.


Salene will, on obtaining the necessary environmental permits, embark on a trenching programme
over the special grant areas in order to determine the extent of the mineralisation and the sampling
thereof to determine the in situ grade of the chrome content. The budgeted cost for the geological
test work to be spent over a twelve-month period is USD3.2 million. Based on the results of the
geological test work, Salene will construct a pilot plant to treat the illuvial chrome deposits. This is in
order to optimise the plant design to maximise recoverability, form the basis for preparing the
required process flow and quantify the capital estimates in relation to a production scale plant. The
nature of the special grant areas allows for a project that is a scalable open pit operation that can be
brought into production on a low risk and relatively low cost basis in a short time horizon. Arxo
Resources Limited (“Arxo”), the wholly owned trading subsidiary of Tharisa, will be the sole off-
taker/marketing agent for the chrome concentrates produced, thereby leveraging Arxo’s existing
capabilities.


The Great Dyke of Zimbabwe contains the world’s largest known platinum group metals and high
grade chrome deposits outside of South Africa. The Great Dyke region is known to contain illuvial
chrome concentrations of up to 30% Cr2O3 at surface.


With this geographical diversification into Zimbabwe, Tharisa has appointed Josephat Zimba to
Country Manager, Zimbabwe. Dr Zimba is a key member of the New Business Development team
and has been at the forefront of this Zimbabwean diversification initiative. He joined the Tharisa
Group as the Group Chief Scientist in June 2009 as a key member of the Group’s strategic R&D team.

Hans van Wyk, the Operations Director at Tharisa Minerals Proprietary Limited (“Tharisa Minerals”),
has been appointed Chief Technical Officer for the Tharisa Group to further strengthen the technical
executive management as Tharisa implements its diversification strategy. He is welcomed as a
member of the Executive Management. Mr van Wyk commenced at Tharisa Minerals as a consulting
metallurgist in September 2011. He was promoted to Operations Director in 2016. Mr van Wyk will


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continue to have responsibility for the overall management of all processing, smelting and
beneficiation operations at the Tharisa Mine. Mr van Wyk has over 17 years’ experience in the
recovery of chrome and PGMs, having worked on a number of chrome and PGM concentrator
operations throughout his career.

This transaction is subject to compliance by Tharisa with the Listings Requirements of the JSE Limited
as they pertain to related party transactions.


Paphos, Cyprus
16 May 2018


JSE Sponsor
Investec Bank Limited


Investor Relations contact:
Tharisa plc
Sherilee Lakmidas
+27 11 996 3538
+27 79 276 2529
slakmidas@tharisa.com


Broker contacts:
Peel Hunt LLP (Joint Broker)
Ross Allister / James Bavister / David McKeown
+44 207 7418 8900
BMO Capital Markets Limited (Joint Broker)
Jeffrey Couch / Neil Haycock / Thomas Rider
+44 020 7236 1010


Financial PR contacts:
Bobby Morse / Anna Michniewicz
+44(0) 20 7466 5000
tharisa@buchanan.uk.com




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