Tanzania: Twiga Minerals Takes Over Acacia Operations, Assets

NEWLY incorporated Twiga Minerals Corporation has taken over operations and assets of the officially dead Acacia Mining.

The government and Canada's Barrick Gold jointly owned Twiga Minerals was incorporated mid-last week and registered by the Business Registrations and Licensing Agency (BRELA).

Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation Minister Professor Palamagamba Kabudi said talks between the government and Barrick Gold have been successfully concluded over Acacia wind up.

"As I speak, Acacia has been officially deregistered and we are now going to establish a joint venture mining firm whose headquarters will be in Mwanza City," Prof Kabudi said.

He said during 20th Mwalimu Nyerere Commemorative Conference in Dar es Salaam recently that the new company will operate Buzwagi, Bulyanhulu and North Mara gold mines.

The 'Daily News' though failed to establish the shareholding structure of Twiga Minerals Corporation, understands that the government proposed a 16 per cent stake in the newly formed firm that will have its headquarters in Mwanza.

Mid last month Barrick Gold acquired all outstanding issued shares it didn't own in Acacia Mining, attaining full control of Acacia Mining.

This resulted on delisting of Acacia share on London Stock Exchange Group, a primary listing exchange of Acacia, mid last month.

Parallel to London delisting, Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) suspended Acacia Mining trading on the bourse, the second largest in East African bloc.

DSE Chief Executive OfficerMoremi Marwa said yesterday that they are working on the delisting issue based on laid down procedures of the land.

"We are working on it as per requirements of DSE rules, CMS -mergers and acquisitions- regulations and our domestic and internal procedures," Mr Marwa said.

DSE said in its Daily Market Report that currently they are pursuing formal processes for Acacia's delisting.

"[But], Acacia has been suspended for trading at the DSE," the report showed yesterday.

Orbit Securities, a leading stock brokerage firm, said if DSE delists Acacia, it will wipe out the exchange total market capitalisation by 2.727bn/-.

"Officials at the DSE are still waiting for an official delisting request from Acacia or Barrick to officially delist the counter from the board," Orbit said in its weekly synopsis report.

Capital Market and Securities Authority (CMSA), Principal Public Relations Officer, Charles Shirima, said once delisted Acacia in whatever new form has to apply afresh for relisting to DSE.

"It has to apply for a fresh listing comeback," Mr Shirima said, adding DSE has the mandate for listing, relisting and delisting.

Acacia cross listing to DSE from London in 2011 and its share was traded 6,650/- at the time of suspension.

A stock broker told the 'Daily News' that the Acacia Mining suspension will not affect minority shareholders. Barrick's original offer, submitted in May, valued Acacia at only 787 million US dollars.

In July, the gold giant bowed to pressure from the African gold miner's shareholders and submitted a sweetened 1.2 billion dollar offer.

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