PepinNini and OZ Minerals strike JV for nickel exploration

THE BOURSE WHISPERER: PepinNini Minerals (PNN) and OZ Minerals Ltd (ASX:OZL) have struck up a farm-in Joint Venture agreement over the Mt Woods Inlier, located in the vicinity of the OZ Minerals’ Prominent Hill copper-gold mine, within the Gawler Craton northwest of Adelaide.

The deal is subject to a confidentiality agreement, under which PepinNini have been granted access to the $70 million worth of geological data collected by OZ Minerals and its predecessor companies in the area.

From this data, PepinNini has deemed the Mt Woods Inlier can be considered fertile for the formation of magmatic polymetallic nickel-PGE sulphide deposits.

“The PGE content in particular is encouraging as not all nickel-sulphide terranes have PGE fertility to form polymetallic nickel-PGE deposits,” PepinNini said in the company’s ASX announcement.

“PepinNini have considerable expertise in Ni-PGE sulphide exploration with the company’s Musgrave project in both South Australia and Western Australia and believe there are analogies within the Mt Woods inlier to many world class nickel-PGE sulphide deposits globally.”

The terms of the agreement require PepinNini to undertake at least 8,000 metres of drilling using its own drilling equipment, which is to be included in an exploration expenditure commitment of $4.4 million to earn an initial 40 per cent interest.

Should OZ Minerals elect not to contribute to expenditure during Stages 3 to 5, PepinNini can earn an additional 40 per cent interest by undertaking a further 30,000m of drilling, again using its own drilling equipment.

This will be part of a further exploration expenditure commitment of $12 million for Stages 3 and 4.

PepinNini will also need to spend $15 million on a prefeasibility study and declare a JORC 2012 reserve in Stage 5.

The agreement is subject to PepinNini raising Stage 1 exploration funding of $1.2 million before 1 December 2015.