TORONTO - International Enexco Ltd. (TSXV:IEC) is to be split up, with its uranium assets in northern Saskatchewan going to Denison Mines Corp. and its copper assets being added to a new company with projects in Nevada and Alaska.
The multi-company proposal calls for Denison (TSX:DML) to buy all of IEC's shares but to spin off the junior company's copper assets, which will become a key part of a newly formed CopperBank Resources Ltd.
In a release, IEC CEO Arnold Amstrong said Denison has been a "strong partner" since 2012. The two are partners in the Bachmann Lake uranium project.
"We look forward to giving shareholders the opportunity to be part of Denison's larger exploration portfolio, within which Mann Lake is an excellent fit," he said, referring to a uranium project being developed alongside mining giant Cameco Corp. (TSX:CCO) and French nuclear firm Areva in Saskatchewan's prolific Athabasca Basin.
CopperBank is being formed through a three-way deal between Full Metal Minerals (TSXV:FMM), Choice Gold and International Enexco.
International Enexco says its shareholders would own about 54 per cent of Copperbank, which will own IEC's Contact copper project in Nevada and Full Metal's Pyramid copper project in Alaska.
"With CopperBank, shareholders will retain majority exposure to the Contact Copper Project, while gaining an ownership stake in Full Metal's prospective Pyramid deposit in Alaska, all within the context of a new investment entity which shall be fully funded and will pursue an aggressive path ahead," said Armstrong.
International Enexco says the combined deals value its shares at 64 cents each, based on March 19 closing prices of the companies involved, representing a 63 per cent premium as of Wednesday.
The complex series of interrelated agreements between the four companies require various approvals, including from shareholders.
International Enexco shares gained 41 per cent to trade at 55 cents on the TSX Venture Exchange in early afternoon trading Thursday.
Denison's stock rose six per cent to $1.85 on the senior exchange, while Full Metals doubled to three cents on the TSX Venture Exchange.