Goldcorp has signed a letter of intent to sell its Peak gold mine in Australia and its Amapari gold mine in Brazil to GPJ Ventures, which will change its name to Peak Gold in connection with the transaction. Under the terms of the agreement, Goldcorp will receive from Peak Gold $200 million in cash and $100 million payable through the issuance of Peak Gold common shares. Upon completion of the sale, Goldcorp will own some 24% of Peak Gold.
“This transaction underscores our commitment to simplifying Goldcorp’s asset portfolio,” said Kevin McArthur, Goldcorp President and CEO. “It sharpens our geographic focus and provides capital that will help fund our growth opportunities and enhance our already-strong financial flexibility. Our ownership interest in Peak Gold will also allow us to participate financially in the future success of that exciting new growth platform.”
Julio Carvalho, previously Goldcorp’s Executive Vice President of South America, will serve as CEO of Peak Gold. Jim Simpson, previously General Manager of Peak mine, will be the Chief Operating Officer. The initial Peak Gold Board of Directors will be comprised of current Goldcorp Chairman Ian Telfer, Frank Giustra, Gordon Keep and Carvalho. Completion of the transaction is subject to a number of conditions, including the execution of definitive agreements, requisite regulatory approvals, completion by GPJ of a C$277.5 million equity financing and approval by disinterested shareholders of GPJ.
Goldcorp’s forecast for 2007 gold production at Peak mine is about 120,000 oz of gold. Amapari mine is expected to produce some 95,000 oz of gold in 2007. Proven and probable reserves at Amapari have been revised downward to 485,000 oz of gold as at December 31, 2006, reflecting the exclusion of sulphide mineralization previously included in proven and probable reserves. As a result, Goldcorp will record an impairment charge of around $170 million in its 2006 year-end earnings.