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Stornoway strengthens balance sheet

Quebec’s Stornoway Diamond Corporation (TSX:SWY) has concluded a series of financing transactions for up to C$129 million with lenders and key stakeholders.
Stornoway strengthens balance sheet Stornoway strengthens balance sheet Stornoway strengthens balance sheet Stornoway strengthens balance sheet Stornoway strengthens balance sheet

Stornoway has secured more financial flexibility as it prepares for positive cash flows from Renard's underground development

Staff Reporter

The transactions were meant to provide the company with greater financial flexibility as the underground operation kicked into high gear.

The finance agreements entailed the deferral of certain loan principal repayments for 24 months, meaning up to $54 million in debt service costs would move up to a later date.

Stornoway would also get additional liquidity under amendments to the Renard diamond streaming agreement with Osisko Gold Royalties, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, Triple Flag Mining Finance Bermuda, Albion Exploration Fund and Washington State Investment Board. This would entail an additional up-front deposit of the US dollar equivalent of $45 million in cash and certain sales and pricing changes, the company said.

Stornoway would also conduct a private placement of units comprising common shares and warrants to raise about $20 million, with an overallotment option to raise a further $10 million, subscribed by existing shareholders.

"The combination of reduced debt costs and new capital has been designed to greatly strengthen our balance sheet for the long term, while at the same time being sensitive to shareholder value," CEO Matt Manson said.

"With major capital expenditures at Renard behind us and our underground mine now fully ramped up, this comprehensive deal allows our team to now focus fully on bringing forward the operating and cash flow potential of the business."

At a recent industry event, Manson acknowledged the company's balance sheet was stressed, and it was in urgent need of re-gearing.

He reckoned that should the company not have proceeded with the underground development, it would have been in a cash-flow positive status from year one.