Northern Mining’s (ASX:NMI) cash position recently swelled to $9 million after selling its Georges Reward Project to Metals X (ASX:MLX).
While the company already holds prime gold prospecting acreage located around Kalgoorlie Boulder, on one of the world’s most productive gold belts, the prospect of using their cash war chest for acquisitions is intriguing.
Adding to Northern Mining’s current assets and cash pile, is a sophisticated and well-connected board, which includes Tony Ong as non-executive chairman.
Mr Ong has extensive board experience both in Australian and Singapore listed companies, and also importantly has the backing of his Hong Kong based private equity fund known as Provenance Finance Ltd.
Provenance Finance has completed more than one billion dollars in funding for Asian entities, providing Northern Mining with the tools that could turn the company into a mining powerhouse.
We are joined exclusively by Northern Mining's non-executive chairman, Tony Ong, in the first of a series of Proactive Q&A Sessions™.
Proactive Investors: Welcome Tony.
First of all in regards to potential acquisitions, which commodity and project life-stage would be best suited for the Northern Mining portfolio, and how many are currently being reviewed?
Tony Ong: We are always looking at enhancing our mining portfolio and gold is of particular interest at the moment as the falling AUD is offsetting the decrease in gold prices.
Many miners in the area have recognized our strength and have approached us to consider a series of collaborations. We are assessing these opportunities in a prudent manner.
Northern Mining has a cash balance of $9 million. Is this sufficient for an acquisition, or would the company look for additional funding from the market?
Tony Ong: It depends on the size of a potential deal and how it is structured.
We would like to ideally have a bigger war chest but the $9 million will allow us to participate at an initial level and we can always raise more funds later to advance the project.
What is the current strategic focus for Northern Mining, and where do you expect the company to be in twelve months’ time?
Tony Ong: We would like to develop NMI into a truly global company. We see NMI being both a platform for Asian investment into Australia as well as for Australian investment into high growth opportunities in Asia, with a focus on resources.
We are getting considerable attention from global investors and have also been approached by small cap funds based out of Europe. We intend to continue our communication with these market participants proactively.
Focussing back on Northern Mining’s mid-term gold production assets around Kalgoorlie Boulder, what are the next steps for Blair North, Kanowna Lights and Snake Hill?
Tony Ong: We want to continue our exploration activities in these tenements. We are currently drawing up a plan to work towards that.
We are confident that we will deliver positive results for our shareholders like we did for Georges Reward.
Could prospects such as Blair North, Kanowna Lights and Snake Hill be monetised in the near-term?
Tony Ong: Yes, we plan to work towards that. As a rule of thumb, we will strive to maximise financial return for all our investments and enhance our shareholder’s value.
This will be carried out prudently, whether they are sold as is or whether we partner others to develop jointly.
Northern Mining recently appointed Gerald Woon to the board. What specific skills will Mr Woon bring to the company, and how can these be used to benefit shareholders?
Tony Ong: Gerald has a strong track record in promoting shareholder’s value. He has guided many listed companies in their investor’s relations strategies and grew them from small cap stocks to blue chips.
He will be helping us to bring more investors into the company as well as to assess opportunities in the region.
Finally, what are the key reasons an investor should consider adding Northern Mining to their portfolio?
Tony Ong: NMI has a strong portfolio of mining tenements. We are very confident of our development plans going forward.
We are able to develop a meaningful plan as we have a strong cash reserves. We are also able to raise further funding should the need arise.
Unlike other junior miners which struggle with funding, NMI has been able to conserve its funds because our directors do not collect large director’s fees which invariably depletes financial resources that can otherwise be best allocated for mining exploration work and business development.
As the chairman of NMI and as the single largest shareholder of the company held via Provenance Finance Limited, I do not draw a single dollar as income from NMI.
Like all my fellow shareholders, I intend to derive my ultimate financial reward through a good dividend and enhanced shareholder’s value.
Besides developing our mining portfolio, we are also actively looking at growing the company by acquiring businesses that can potentially generate recurrent income.
This will hopefully shorten the path to our plan for a consistent dividend policy.
Proactive Investors: Thank-you Tony.
Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.