Nautilus Minerals shares on the rise after solid year end results

Nautilus Minerals Inc. shares were up almost 24% this morning (TSX:NUS), after the company released solid year end results with, narrowing its full-year loss in 2011 to US$34 million.

Nautilus, the first company to explore the ocean floor for polymetallic seafloor massive sulphide deposits, ended 2011 with US$149.4 million in cash and cash equivalents, after what the company qualifies as “a milestone year.”

In 2011 Nautilus was granted the first deep sea “hard rock” mining lease for its Solwara 1 project in the Bismarck Sea, Papua New Guinea, where it is aiming to produce gold, copper and silver.

Nautilus also holds approximately 600,000 square kilometers of highly prospective exploration acreage in the western Pacific, in PNG, the Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu and Tonga, as well as in international waters in the eastern Pacific.

In November last year, MINING.com reported doubts had surfaced about the viability of undersea mining. A Canadian-led study, published in the journal Geology, states that “the possibility of mining sea floor [deposits] has stirred debate about the sustainable use of this new resource and whether commercial development is worth the risk.”

However, the company was able to book US$1.5 million in foreign exchange gains, compared to a 5.1 million loss in the year earlier. It also raised C$98.1 million in private placement of common shares.

A Conference Call and Webcast will be held on Tuesday March 27, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. (Toronto time).