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Atlas unit to raise $300M from offshore bonds

CCC to expand Cebu mine output

Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corp.’s wholly owned Carmen Copper Corp. (CCC) plans to raise up to $300 million from the sale of offshore bonds, becoming the first Philippine mining firm to brave the overseas debt market.

It was earlier disclosed that CCC’s dollar-denominated bond offer would have a tenor of five years and five days and that BDO Capital & Investment Corp. and Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Ltd. would act as joint lead managers and bookrunners.

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Two sources privy to the fund-raising confirmed the offering size. A source from the SM group said the offering size would be “up to $300 million or less.”

Another source privy to the exercise gave a similar figure, adding that the company would try “to get it done within the week or early next week.”

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CCC’s parent firm, Atlas, is a partnership between the group of Alfredo Ramos and tycoon Henry Sy’s holding firm SM Investments Corp.

However, the debt notes will be unsecured and will not be guaranteed by Atlas.

CCC operates the Toledo copper mine in the province of Cebu.

Based on local reports, the company is on track with the open-pit development of the higher-grade Carmen ore body and is now planning capacity expansion.

The initial target is to raise its current throughput capacity of 40,000 tons per day to 60,000 tons per day.

Based on an earlier disclosure, net proceeds from the offering are intended to refinance some of CCC’s debt as well as fund its capital and project expenditures, to enable parent Atlas to refinance a portion of its existing debt backed by CCC and to fund other general corporate purposes.

The proposed issue is based on an “unrated Regulation S” offering, which means that they are not registered in the United States and therefore could only be sold to international investors outside the US.

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The Philippine mining firm has recently embarked on road shows in Asia and Europe.

It was earlier reported that CCC had posted a net income of P2.54 billion in 2011, up from only P670 million in 2010. Core income was likewise up by 59.5 percent to P2.283 billion.

CCC sold its copper output in 2011 at an average realized price of $8,879 per ton, or $4.03 per pound, higher than the average of $7,034 per ton, or $3.19 per pound, reported the previous year.

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TAGS: carmen copper corp., fund raising, Mining and quarrying, offshore bonds, Philippines
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