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Lucapa seeks to reduce Mothae development debt facility

05 april 2019

news_02072018_lucapa.pngLucapa Diamond said it has agreed to funding and refinancing arrangements with New Azilian and Equigold, which will help reduce the Mothae development debt facility ahead of schedule, along with other obligations, while also supplementing working capital. 
New Azilian would enter into a A$10 million ($7 million) one-year loan facility with Lucapa at an annual interest rate of 10%, payable quarterly. 
Lucapa had already received an advance of A$6 million ($4.2 million) of the loan facility, with the balance to be drawn next month. 
Lucapa said it would utilise the New Azilian funding to pre-pay two quarterly $1.9 million capital repayments on the Equigold debt facility.
Equigold and Lucapa greed to bring forward the right under the loan agreement for Equigold to convert a $1.9 million quarterly capital repayment into ordinary fully paid Lucapa shares.
The net effect of the quarterly capital cash pre-payments and conversion would see the Equigold debt facility reduced to $7.5 million.  
Lucapa said the funds from New Azilian will also provide Lucapa and Mothae with flexibility on the scheduling of future diamond tenders in order to maximise diamond revenues.
Lucapa said these agreements reflect the “successful delivery” and de-risking of Mothae, which commenced commercial production in January following the commissioning and ramp-up phase and had already produced five +50 carat diamonds.
“These new refinancing arrangements will provide Lucapa with added financial strength to continue to build our strategic position in this niche high-value diamond sector,” said Lucapa chief executive Stephen Wetherall.  
 “The support from New Azilian and Equigold is also a strong endorsement of Lucapa’s growth strategy and our focus on maximising diamond production and cash generation from our Lulo and Mothae mines, while continuing our search for the hard-rock source at Lulo.” 

Mathew Nyaungwa, Editor in Chief of the African Bureau, Rough&Polished