Metals X to sell copper assets as shareholder fight leads to cash crunch

Nifty copper mine in Western Australia. Credit: Paul O’Callaghan via Flickr

Australia’s Metals X Ltd is looking to sell its entire copper portfolio after issues with a shareholder hindered the company’s ability to repay debt, the diversified miner said on Thursday.

The copper assets include the Paterson exploration project, for which Metals X signed a farm-in agreement last month with nickel miner IGO Ltd, Nifty copper operation and Maroochydore copper project – all located in Western Australia.

The company said issues with shareholder APAC Resources Ltd has resulted in the suspension of talks with company’s financier on debt repayment schedule.

APAC, which owns 14% stake in Metal X as of October last year, sent notices to the company last week seeking the removal of three independent directors, which had a “material impact” on funding talks for Nifty, initially expected to be finished by July.

“These circumstances have led the board to conclude that divestment of the copper assets is the most appropriate course of action to ensure the financial integrity of the company and realize value for shareholders,” the Perth-based company said.

Since the strategic review for copper assets began in June, the company has received interest from parties to acquire full ownership and they will now be invited to submit offers, it said.

($1 = 1.4428 Australian dollars)

(By Anushka Trivedi; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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