Stanbic Bank Botswana parent, Standard Bank, appointed as lead financing provider for the conversion of the Venetia Mine from open pit to underground
Stanbic Bank Botswana parent, Standard Bank Group, has provided R4 billion of a R10 billion syndicated debt funding package required by De Beers Group for the biggest single investment in South Africa’s diamond industry and one of the largest mining investment projects currently underway in the Africa.
As one of the financers, Standard Bank was responsible for the largest debt funding allocation, providing a revolving credit facility to help South Africa’s leading diamond mine fund the completion of its strategic Underground Project. Venetia mine, first opened in 1992, is De Beers Group’s flagship operation in South Africa, and is situated 80km from Musina (formerly Messina) in Limpopo Province.
“This is a huge investment by De Beers that will convert the mine from an open pit to an underground operation, and ultimately extend its life to at least 2047,” says Kesh Ramlakun, Corporate Financing Solutions Manager. “Our appointment by De Beers gives us the opportunity to leverage our specialist knowledge within the mining industry built on an extensive track record, insights and capabilities across the continent.
“In addition to our depth of technical capabilities, we have a strong commitment to support clients with strategic growth initiatives across all industries, including mining” says Ramlakun.
The mine is South Africa’s largest diamond producer, and with the conversion to underground mining, the site expects to maintain production at around 4 million carats per annum.
Moses Madondo, Managing Director of De Beers Group Managed Operations said, “During the project phase, Venetia mine has created approximately 3,000 jobs, of which about 1,700 are occupied by our local community members. As part of our focus on local employment, for every job on the mine we aim to create 5 jobs in our communities, by 2030.
“The mining sector has a crucial role to play in laying the foundation for sustainable communities. As De Beers Group, we recognise this, and are proud to have collaborated with Standard Bank in not only ensuring that we deliver a technologically advanced underground mine but also realising our goal of creating a positive lasting impact to our host communities.”
The state of the art jewellery manufacturing plant that has been set up by international diamond and cutting company, KGK Diamonds Botswana will create over 100 jobs, of which 89 percent will be localized.
Local diamond and metal exploration company Tsodilo Resources Limited has negotiated a non-brokered private placement of 2,200, 914 units of the company at a price per unit of 0.20 US Dollars, which will provide gross proceeds to the company in the amount of C$440, 188. 20.
According to a statement from the group, proceeds from the private placement will be used for the betterment of the Xaudum iron formation project in Botswana and general corporate purposes.
The statement says every unit of the company will consist of a common share in the capital of the company and one Common Share purchase warrant of the company.
Each warrant will enable a holder to make a single purchase for the period of 24 months at an amount of $0.20. As per regularity requirements, the group indicates that the common shares and warrants will be subject to a four month plus a day hold period from date of closure.
Tsodilo is exempt from the formal valuation and minority shareholder approval requirements. This is for the reason that the fair market value of the private placement, insofar as it involves the director, is not more than 25% of the companyâ€™s market capitalization.
Tsodilo Resources Limited is an international diamond and metals exploration company engaged in the search for economic diamond and metal deposits at its Bosoto Limited and Gcwihaba Resources projects in Botswana. Â The company has a 100% stake in Bosoto which holds the BK16 kimberlite project in the Orapa Kimberlite Field (OKF) in Botswana.
African heads of state and global CEOs at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting backed the launch of the first of its kind report on how public-private partnerships can support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
AfCFTA: A New Era for Global Business and Investment in Africa outlines high-potential sectors, initiatives to support business and investment, operational tools to facilitate the AfCFTA, and illustrative examples from successful businesses in Africa to guide businesses in entering and expanding in this area.
The report aims to provide a pathway for global businesses and investors to understand the biggest trends, opportunities and strategies to successfully invest and achieve high returns in Africa, developing local, sub-regional and continental value chains and accelerating industrialization, all of which go hand in hand with the success of the AfCFTA.
The AfCFTA is the largest free trade area in the world, by area and number of participating countries. Once fully implemented, it will be the fifth-largest economy in the world, with the potential to have a combined GDP of more than $3.4 trillion. Conceived in 2018, it now has 54 national economies in Africa, could attract billions in foreign investment, and boost overseas exports by a third, double intra-continental trade, raise incomes by 8% and lift 50 million people out of poverty.
To ease the pain of transition to its new single market, Africa has learned from trade liberalization in North America and Europe. â€śOur wide range of partners and experience can help anticipate and mitigate potential disruptions in business and production dynamics,â€ť said BĂ¸rge Brende, President, and World Economic Forum. â€śThe Forumâ€™s initiatives will help to ease physical, capital and digital flows in Africa through stakeholder collaboration, private-public collaboration and information-sharing.â€ť
Given the continentâ€™s historically low foreign direct investment relative to other regions, the report highlights the sense of excitement as the AfCFTA lowers or removes barriers to trade and competitiveness. â€śThe promising gains from an integrated African market should be a signal to investors around the world that the continent is ripe for business creation, integration and expansion,â€ť said Chido Munyati, Head of Regional Agenda, Africa, World Economic Forum.
The report focuses on four key sectors that have a combined worth of $130 billion and represent high-potential opportunities for companies looking to invest in Africa: automotive; agriculture and agroprocessing; pharmaceuticals; and transport and logistics.
â€śMacro trends in the four key sectors and across Africaâ€™s growth potential reveal tremendous opportunities for business expansion as population, income and connectivity are on the rise,â€ť said Wamkele Mene, Secretary-General, AfCFTA Secretariat.
The Forum is actively working towards implementing trade and investment tools through initiatives, such as Friends of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area, to align with the negotiation process of the AfCFTA. It identifies areas where public-private collaboration can help reduce barriers and facilitate investment from international firms.
About the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2023
The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2023 convenes the worldâ€™s foremost leaders under the theme, Cooperation in a Fragmented World. It calls on world leaders to address immediate economic, energy and food crises while laying the groundwork for a more sustainable, resilient world. For further information,