Southeast Asia Cement Holdings Inc. (Seacem) has acquired two mining firms for $80 million in line with its target to be the leading mining firm in the country.
In two separate disclosures to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE), Seacem said it is acquiring 100 percent of Ferrochrome Resources Inc. (FRI) and Southeast Palawan Nickel Ventures Inc., for $30 million and $50 million, respectively.
Seacem shares were temporarily suspended from trading since Thursday morning to give way to the announcement.
FRI has two operating mining agreements: one with Zambales Diversified Metals Corp. which covers 3,765 hectares of mine, and another with Zambales Chromite Mining Co. Inc. which covers about 540 hectares — both of which are mine sites for chromite and other platinum metals.
Southeast Palawan, on the other hand, owns a 90-percent stake in Ipilan Nickel Corp. which is engaged in nickel mining in Brookes Point in Palawan Province.
Earlier, Seacem chairman Raul M. Ang said that while the company is currently the second largest nickel ore producer in terms of volume next to Nickel Asia Corp., it “aims to be No. 1” in the next few years.
With the company’s expansion plans, Ang said that Seacem expects to conduct its P10 billion follow- on offering in April next year after the completion of its backdoor listing on the stock exchange.
The backdoor listing of Platinum Group Metals Corp. (PGMC) was done through Seacem’s acquisition of 99 percent stake in PGMC, where PGMC “will be injected into Seacem, and will become a subsidiary of Seacem.” The PGMC acquisition was approved by Seacem’s shareholders during its annual stockholders meeting last October.
PGMC’s backdoor listing necessitated a change of corporate name to Global Ferronickel Holdings Inc.
The backdoor listing method enables a company to debut on the exchange via the acquisition of an existing listed company. Listing through this method is cheaper than an initial public offering (IPO), which requires a follow-on offering of shares within 12 months after listing.
PGMC has mined 5.5 million metric tons (MT) of nickel ore in the first eight months of the year, close to the 6.3 million MT target capacity this year and 40 percent higher than the actual 4.5 million MT volume shipments last year.
The company’s nickel ores are exported to China (90 percent) and Australia (10 percent).
Other firms with IPO plans this year include Phoenix Semiconductor Philippines Corp., Xurpas Inc., and Company of Friends Inc. (Pro-Friends).