Investments in companies - 9.8.2010
Finnish Industry Investment Ltd, Teknoventure Management Oy and Swedish private investors have invested altogether MEUR 2.7 in an acquisition in which Silver Resources Oy merged with Swedish company Gexco AB. The merger broadened the ownership and strengthened the financing of the mining company. Silver Resources has silver mining operations in Taivaljärvi, Finland.
Gexco was listed on Stockholms NMG Equity exchange for Nordic growth companies, and the companys name was changed to Sotkamo Silver AB after the merger. The new name will be adopted during August this year.
The companys main project is the Taivaljärvi deposit in the Sotkamo area of northern Finland, which consists mostly of silver but also includes zinc, lead and gold.
- We aim to start building the mine in 2012 and silver quarrying is scheduled for 2013. The production capacity of Taivaljärvis concentration plant at that time is estimated to be 350,000 tonnes of ore a year. We believe there are sufficient resources for 5-7 years of quarrying, says Sotkamo Silvers CEO Timo Lindborg, DSc (Technology).
During the construction stage the mining project will employ 70-100 people, and after mining has started 70-90, estimates Lindborg.
Pumping of water from the existing mine tunnel has already started, and the infrastructure of the finished tunnel will be inspected by the coming autumn. Power lines are being taken to the area, the ground is being levelled, and a core drilling programme is verifying the extent and depth of the silver reserves from the viewpoint of opening the mine. Feasibility studies have started and, based on the ongoing studies, next year Sotkamo Silver will start negotiations for financing construction of the mine. Altogether MEUR 25-30 of investment will be needed.
- It will be possible to bring the mine into production extremely quickly because the project has already been studied, and the production tunnel is ready and in good condition. The industrial use of silver is expected to increase, particularly in solar panels, pharmaceuticals and water purification applications. One option in the project is gold. If the gold content were high enough, it would make the project literally worth its weight in gold, explains Mauri Visuri, Teknoventures Investment Director and member of Sotkamo Silvers board of directors.
- The favourable development of silver prices on the world market is one good reason for continuing the mining project, comments Director Kimmo Viertola from Industry Investment.
Sotkamo Silver ABs business concept is to explore mineral deposits in the Nordic countries, while also addressing social and environmental factors. Through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Sotkamo Silver owns the silver deposit at Taivaljärvi and the gold deposit at Hopeavuori, near Tampere, both of which are situated in Finland. The Groups head office is in Stockholm. Sotkamo Silvers shares are listed on Stockholms NMG Equity exchange for Nordic growth companies. www.gexco.se
Teknoventure Management Oy is a nationwide investment company that operates regionally in the SME sector. Based in Oulu, the company manages five funds with investment resources totalling some MEUR 50. Teknoventure Management Oy is a part of the Profita Group, which has offices in Helsinki, Turku, Vaasa and Oulu. The Group employs 20 private equity investment specialists and has assets under management amounting to approx. MEUR 200. www.teknoventure.fi
Finnish Industry Investment Ltd is a government-owned investment company whose mission is to promote Finnish business, employment and economic growth through capital investment. Finnish Industry Investment invests in growth companies, directly and through funds. Capital investments are needed for financing growth, and for internationalisation, spin-offs, major industrial investments, and both sectoral and corporate restructurings. The targets are in all sectors. The company co-invests with private investors, limiting its investment to at most half the capital invested and ownership. The investments of Finnish Industry Investment amount to MEUR 650. www.industryinvestment.com
- Timo Lindborg, CEO, Sotkamo Silver AB,
mobile +358 40 508 3507, timo.lindborg (at) silver.fi
- Mauri Visuri, Investment Director, Teknoventure Management Oy,
mobile +358 40 865 7946, mauri.visuri (at) profitagroup.fi
- Kimmo Viertola, Director, Finnish Industry Investment Ltd,
mobile +358 50 309 2734, kimmo.viertola (at) industryinvestment.com