Miner M&A Monday’s big return to the gold space – by David Erfle (Kitco News – December 6, 2019)


Speculation about asset divestitures among global miners after recent M&A deals began to come to fruition on Monday, November 17th, when Barrick Gold (GOLD) sold its 50% stake in the Kalgoorlie Super Pit gold mine to Saracen Mineral Holdings for $750 million.

Trendsetter and high-profile Barrick CEO Mark Bristow has been quite adamant recently about selling off assets that it does not own 100% of, along with projects that do not produce over 500,000 ounces per year for at least 10 years.

The following Monday, Australia’s Evolution Mining Ltd agreed to buy the Canadian gold mining complex Red Lake from the world’s largest gold miner Newmont Goldcorp (NEM) for US$375 million in cash plus a US$100M contingent payment tied to new resource discoveries. The Red Lake mine has an incredible mining history and was the foundation of Goldcorp, but does not move the needle much for a company the size of Newmont Goldcorp.

This is the second Canadian asset bought by Australian miners this year (Junior developer Atlantic Gold was taken over by Aussie miner St. Barbara in May) and I expect the trend is likely to continue due to a valuation gap between the two different markets.

Additionally, Kirkland Lake Gold (KL) announced on the same day that it had agreed to buy Detour Gold (DGC.TO) for $4.9 billion in an all-share deal, whereby Detour shareholders will receive 0.4343 shares of Kirkland. Although Kirkland sold down over 17% on the announcement, long-term investors have since bought the weakness as the deal offers excellent optionality to the gold price once the market has priced in a solid $1500 floor in bullion.

For the rest of this column: https://www.kitco.com/commentaries/2019-12-06/Miner-M-A-Monday-s-big-return-to-the-gold-space.html