| TORONTO, March 22
TORONTO, March 22 Canadian miner Royal Nickel
Corp is teaming up with private equity firm Waterton
Global Resource Management to buy, develop and operate
undervalued nickel assets, the companies said on Wednesday.
The venture will have $35 million to acquire nickel mines
and projects, said the companies, and Waterton will pay $22.5
million for a 50-percent stake in Royal Nickel's Dumont nickel
project in Quebec, which the partnership will own.
"Where you have long-term, patient capital, that's willing
to unlock value, I think there's lots of opportunities," said
Royal Nickel Chief Executive Mark Selby in an interview.
The venture, which has earmarked $5 million to advance
development at Dumont, is currently eyeing four to 11 targets
that are relatively low-cost and do not need major capital to
develop, Selby said.
Prices for nickel, used to make stainless steel, have
dropped more than 40 percent since the start of 2015, on rising
stockpiles and weak Chinese demand.
"They are willing to invest with a much longer-term view of
where nickel markets are headed, as opposed to what today's
price is," Selby said of Waterton. "That will allow us to pursue
some other opportunities that, otherwise, wouldn't be
A feasibility study projects that Dumont will produce 33,000
tonnes annually in its first five years of operations, and
54,000 tonnes per year thereafter, with a mine life of more than
Toronto-based Royal Nickel also owns a majority stake in
Australia's Beta Hunt gold mine and a 30-percent stake in
Manitoba's Reed copper mine.
(Reporting by Susan Taylor; Editing by Tom Brown)