Saturday, May 21, 2022

Firestones prepares for champagne listing celebrations

Firestone Diamonds Plc was on Friday in a frantic move of putting ducks in a row for the big listing celebration on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) mid this month as it further prepares for the second diamond tender by end of June.

The company met all conditions that were set by the BSE Friday according to  informed sources close to the deal and the listing date is expected to be within less than two days.

However, the company’s London-based executives were understood to be planning a fanfare celebration in Gaborone to coincide with the actual listing.

“The two requirements that were made by the BSE have been met and the final documents were filed with exchange on Friday,” a source said, adding that BSE is expected to issue a formal response during this week.

BSE had wanted the London AIM quoted company to disclose all commission that it paid over the last three years and more details regarding the shareholding structure following the acquisition of Mokopane mine in Lesotho.

The new developments┬áclear the air on the┬álong┬áawaited┬ásecondary listing of Firestone Diamonds on BSE after┬áargument┬áraised by BSE on whether it has fully complied with┬áCompany’s Act of Botswana.

Last month, Firestone Diamonds’ lawyers successively argued that it should be exempted from the rules of the Botswana’s Company’s Act since its subsidiary, which is incorporated in Botswana, has already complied.??BSE regulatory stance has delayed the listing of the diamond mining laity, which has been itching to list on the local bourse with a view of opening up opportunities for Botswana citizens. ??“I think the decision taken by BSE now is more instructive and other mining companies that are aiming to list on the BSE will use the same argument,” the source added.??Other companies that are lining up to list on the BSE are Botswana Diamonds, Hana Mining┬áand Lucara Diamond and┬áall have assets in Botswana.??Firestone Diamonds operates the BK11 mine, which is near Orapa ÔÇö a place dubbed the best diamond address with the street name being Orapa.

Orapa mine is the world’s biggest diamond mine, discovered in 1969.??BK 11 is some 20 kilometres south-east of Orapa mine and five kilometers north east of Lucara Diamond’s AK 6 proposed mine. ??The move is expected to bolster the presence of the company in the local scene. Firestone Diamonds Plc is also involved in diamond exploration near Jwaneng mine and Tsabong areas where its finds have been described as “encouraging”. ??Last year, Firestone Diamonds said it was embolden by the results from BK11, especially with the resource from KW, which has a “high confidence grade” and diamond and diamond value estimates to be made. This is based on inferred resource of 12 million tones defined containing approximately 830,000 carats for the area.??Lucara is also understood to be ramping up its exemption argument as was Botswana Diamonds whose ambitions were snarled in the same mud as Firestone Diamonds.??Botswana Diamonds has three assets in Botswana: AK 8, AK 9 and BK 5, which are all along the Orapa area.??Both AK 8 and AK 9 are former De Beers concessions and they were farmed to African Diamonds in 2004 following their joint venture that was called Boteti Diamond Project.??“Since 2004, we have explored the two kimberlites using the most advanced technologies. As for AK 8 we found that the kimberlite was bigger than what was originally thought although the grade was not that higher,” the company stated. It was thought that BK 5 could provide a stand-alone mine, which would mean that we will have to build a plant or rent one.”??Further, Botswana Diamonds Plc has further interest in Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zimbabwe.


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