African technology metals mining company Andrada Mining is in the process of requesting the drawdown of a N$100-million, or about $5.8-million, facility from the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN).
This follows DBN’s confirmation that all conditions have been fulfilled or waived and that financial close has occurred.
Andrada expects the funds, which will be used to expedite the implementation of the Uis Mine Stage II continuous improvement project (CI2), to be available to it this week.
The CI2 is aimed at improving processing efficiencies to maximise the tin concentrate recovery rate at the Uis mine, in Namibia; establishing business sustainability through the enhancement of operational support infrastructure; and reducing operating costs.
Ultimately, the CI2 is targeted to increase the plant throughput to greater than one-million tonnes a year.
The planned improvements will be implemented over the next six months and Andrada expects to start seeing initial results from the first quarter of the 2024 financial year.
“The conclusion of the DBN funding is an essential component of the overall funding and development strategy. These proceeds will be used to implement the improvements at Uis mine, which will enhance the plant’s productivity and output.
“The targeted increase in the tin recovery rate should complement the royalty portion of the [$25-million funding by Orion Resource Partners] by enabling Andrada to achieve the requisite thresholds of concentrate tonnages. The improvement in cost efficiencies and overall productivity at Uis lays the foundation for the management of the lithium processing plant and other future operations,” Andrada CEO Anthony Viljoen says.
He adds that the funding sourced since the successful $22.8-million equity raise in September 2022 has significantly strengthened Andrada’s balance sheet and provides it with optionality on how to expedite the group’s multi-tech development strategy.
“Importantly, the DBN and Orion funding will enable us to implement various strategic initiatives necessary for further production growth and the stabilisation of the company’s assets. Partnering with the DBN and gaining the bank’s confidence, will enable the company to secure additional infrastructure development financing potentially required for our future growth aspirations,” Viljoen highlights.
“As we continue with the Barclays-led strategic process to identify an appropriate partner for our lithium development strategy, we are simultaneously expanding our resource through an extensive exploration programme and determining the optimal way to become a multi-tech-metals producer through the metallurgy programme,” he adds.
By: Tasneem Bulbulia