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Stellar Diamonds Narrows Loss, Seeks to Raise $20M

Mar 27, 2015 9:02 AM   By Jeff Miller
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RAPAPORT... Stellar Diamonds reported a loss of $934,928 for the six months that ended on December 31, compared with a loss of $1.55 million one year earlier, primarily due to lower administrative costs.  During the fiscal period, Stellar Diamonds began trial mining at its Baoulé kimberlite pipe in Guinea and reached the target capacity of 50 tonnes per hour. Diamond recovery was enough for the junior miner to hold its first sale recently,  resulting in proceeds of $417,122 from 4,414 carats.

At the Tongo kimberlite dyke-1 project in Sierra Leone, bulk sampling resulted in a diamond parcel of 1,182 carats and the program enabled Stellar Diamond to increase the project's inferred diamond resource to 1.45 million carats.

Looking ahead, the company continues to  advance its key diamond projects, which have multi-million carat potential,  toward production and it concluded that now there is a defined path to trial mining with cash-flow being realized from diamond sales at Baoulé.  At Tongo, Stellar intends to apply for a mining license with  Sierra Leone, which would incorporate an environmental impact assessment and update to existing technical and mining reports. But the company added that it requires funding and anticipates raising up to $20 million in aggregate to fund both the mining license application and the Tongo mine development.

Stellar Diamonds' CEO, Karl Smithson, said, “Stellar has made significant progress at both Baoulé in Guinea and Tongo in Sierra Leone during the report period. Bringing Baoulé into trial mining production during the Ebola crisis was a remarkable achievement and it is pleasing to see our first export and sales cycle being successfully completed. Processing to date has yielded over 4,100 carats at a grade of over 13 carats per hundred tonnes (cpht). We expect to continue the trial mining with an objective of at least 100,000 tonnes being processed in aggregate to establish the grade and value of the pipe with confidence, but importantly to recover some large, high-value diamonds that the Aredor area of Guinea is world renowned for.

“At Tongo...a surface mining study has also been completed, which identified a technique that is expected to allow us to mine from surface for three years while underground mine development is completed. This positively impacts on expected project economics and we intend to conduct an updated preliminary economic assessment which should justify the decision to apply for a mine lease for the project during 2015,” he said.

 

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Tags: diamond, Jeff Miller, mining, prices, Sierra Leone, Stellar Diamonds
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