Bloomberg News

BHP to Sell Diamond Project Stake to Peregrine for $8.7 Million

December 20, 2011

Dec. 20 (Bloomberg) -- BHP Billiton Ltd., the world’s largest mining company, agreed to sell its 51 percent interest in a Canadian diamond project to Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. as it continues to review its diamond business.

Peregrine, which already owns 49 percent and operates the project, said today in a statement it will pay C$9 million ($8.7 million) over 3 years and grant BHP a 2 percent royalty on any future production from the Chidliak project on Baffin Island in Nunavut territory.

BHP said last month it may sell some or all of its diamond business. Aside from the Chidliak stake, the Melbourne-based company owns 80 percent of the Ekati diamond mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories.

The review of BHP’s interest in Ekati is “ongoing,” the company said today in a separate statement.

Peregrine, based in Vancouver, also said today it agreed to buy BHP’s Canadian regional diamond exploration database as part of the transaction.

--Editors: Steven Frank, Jessica Resnick-Ault

To contact the reporter on this story: Liezel Hill in Toronto at lhill30@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Frank at sfrank9@bloomberg.net


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