Botswana Diamonds Plc, the newly formed diamond exploration outfit with assets around┬áOrapa, is scheduled to list on the London, Alternative Investment┬áMarkets (AIM) in the coming two weeks, the┬ácompany┬áconfirmed on Monday.
“I can tell you with almost absolute┬ácertainty that we will be listing on London Stock Exchange┬átwo weeks from now. We are scheduled to list on January 31,”┬áexecutive chairman of Botswana Diamonds, John Teeling, said.
“We will do that and thereafter I will be coming to Gaborone to do presentations to investors in Botswana,” he┬ásaid in a telephone interview from Dublin.
The listing of Botswana Diamonds on┬áLondon Stock Exchange is expected to be followed by the┬álisting on Botswana Stock Exchange┬á(BSE), which is hoped to take place┬ánext month.
However, the┬áBSE listing┬áis still fluid following BSE’s┬átough┬áregulatory stance that it adopted after the Blue listing┬áin 2008.
“We are slightly behind┬áwith plans┬áto list on Botswana because of the regulatory procedures,” he said.
Botswana Diamonds is one of the┬átop four┬ámining companies that are earmarked to list on the BSE┬áduring the first half of this year.
Firestone Diamonds┬áPlc is still stuck in the regulatory procedures and has missed its planned listing┬ádates┬álast year.
Lacura and Hana mining are also┬áscheduled to list within the same period.
Botswana Diamonds has three assets in Botswana,┬á namely┬áAK 8, AK 9 and BK 5, which are all along the Orapa areaÔÇöwhich he has dubbed the best diamond address in the world.
Orapa area┬áhas┬áfive diamond┬ámines, namely Damtshaa, BK 11, Letlhakane and Orapa mine.
Orapa mine is the world’s largest┬ádiamond mine. And there is AK 6 which┬áhas been sold to┬áLucara.
The┬ácompany is planning to fast track its exploration exercise over the three projects┬áthat are┬áexpected to be┬áthe mainstay of the company’s operations across the African continent.
“We will be┬áfocusing on the sampling of AK 8 and AK 9 starting from┬áthis January and┬áthat should take us about six months,” he said.
The┬áfocus of the┬ásampling┬áwill try to determine the┬ávalue of the mine as well as the commercial┬álevel of the deposits.
The┬áoutcome of the┬ásampling┬áshould be able to inform the company on the future planning┬áfor the mine which might include building┬áor renting┬áa small processing plant at the site┬áor┬áshipping the ore┬áat the central processing plant.
“We have done┬áan extensive study running up 120 pages towards the commercial operation of the sites,”┬áTeeling has said.
Both AK 8 and AK9 were┬áformer De Beers┬áoperations┬áfarmed to African Diamonds in 2004 following their joint venture that was called Boteti Diamond Project.
“Since 2004, we have explored the two kimberlites┬áusing the most advanced technologies. As for AK 8, we found that the kimberlite was bigger than what was originally thought┬áalthough the grade was not that higher,” he said.
“I am very bullish about BK 5 and I think that can provide a stand alone mine which will mean that we will have to build a plant or rent one. What we are looking at is┬ásmall and low CAPEX mine┬áat┬áBK 5 with a high potential,” Teeling added.
He said the exploration exercise for the┬áthree┬áassets will be┬áramped up this year and are expected to be the┬ácenter piece of the company’s operations across the┬áAfrican┬áregion.
Botswana Diamonds Plc, which is expected to be listed both on London AIM and Botswana Stock Exchange, has some interest in Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zimbabwe.