Financing - progress update

Released : 01/09/2016 07:00

RNS Number : 6273I
Sirius Minerals Plc
01 September 2016



1 September 2016


Sirius Minerals Plc

Financing - progress update


Sirius Minerals Plc (AIM: SXX, OTCQX: SRUXY) ("Sirius" or the "Company") provides an update on the financing for its North Yorkshire polyhalite project (the "Project"). 

The Company's financing plan was articulated in the announcement of 17 March 2016 and updated in the capital funding requirement reduction announcement of 24 June 2016.  The Company continues to make good progress with its two stage financing plan.

Following a market sounding with potential senior debt lenders the Company has now mandated a group of six financial institutions experienced in mining and infrastructure project finance as Mandated Lead Arrangers (the "MLAs").  The MLAs - Export Development Canada ("EDC"), ING; J.P. Morgan; Lloyds Bank plc; Societe Generale, Corporate & Investment Banking;  and The Royal Bank of Scotland Plc - have been mandated on the basis of a non-binding but mutually agreed term sheet, having undertaken initial due diligence of Project documents.

Once approved the Stage 2 financing is expected to comprise of aggregate senior debt facilities of up to US$2.6 billion (the "Facilities") to fund the Stage 2 capital funding requirement and costs relating to financing the Project.  Financial close for the Facilities is expected to take place in 2018.

The Company expects the Facilities to be provided from a group of commercial banks, Export Credit Agencies ("ECAs") and other financing institutions (including the MLAs) with a component receiving the benefit of a HMT Guarantee to be provided under the UK Guarantee Scheme ("UKGS").  The MLAs will seek to arrange the Facilities and have indicated that they will fund up to US$700 million in aggregate of the Facilities.  The initial marketing conducted by the Company indicated that further funds will be available above and beyond the amounts indicated by the MLAs.

The Infrastructure and Projects Authority ("IPA"), which was established in January 2016 by merging the Major Projects Authority with Infrastructure UK, and reports jointly to both HM Treasury ("HMT") and the Cabinet Office, has already prequalified the Project for consideration for a HMT Guarantee (announced 22 September 2015).  IPA has discussed the Stage 2 financing plan with the Company and confirmed its interest in supporting the Stage 2 financing for the Project. 

The appointment of the MLAs does not constitute an offer of financing or an underwritten commitment by the MLAs to provide financing.  The MLAs' appointment is subject to market standard conditions including due diligence, credit and other business approvals, and execution of legal documentation acceptable to the MLAs.  Similarly, IPA's prequalification does not constitute an offer of financing or an underwriting commitment.  IPA requires its normal processes to be undertaken in addition to due diligence, such as satisfaction of conditions, HM Treasury credit process, risk committee, credit committee and ultimately Ministerial approval. 

The Company intends to progress the Stage 2 financing, with the MLAs and IPA commencing detailed due diligence, following the successful completion of the Stage 1 financing.  The Company continues to progress the Stage 1 financing and is in active discussion with a number of parties undertaking due diligence.  The details of the Stage 1 capital structure and timing will be subject to further announcement at an appropriate time. 

Chris Fraser Managing Director and CEO said:

"The Stage 2 senior debt financing is a major component of the total financing plan for the development of the Company's North Yorkshire polyhalite project.  The progress to date provides a strong foundation of support for the Company to further expand on over the next two years to complete the full financing of a development that can generate so many positive economic benefits to the region and country as a whole.

"The Company is now focussed on the finalisation of the Stage 1 financing to enable construction to commence as soon as possible.  This positive step on the senior debt financing should provide Stage 1 investors with greater clarity and confidence on the total financing of our world class fertilizer business."

This announcement contains inside information as defined in Article 7 of the Market Abuse Regulation No. 596/2014 and is disclosed in accordance with the Company's obligations under Article 17 of those Regulations.

For further information, please contact:

Sirius Minerals Plc

Investor Relations




Tel: +44 845 524 0247

Joint Brokers

Liberum Capital Limited (NOMAD)


Neil Elliot, Clayton Bush, Jill Li


Tel: +44 20 3100 2222

J.P. Morgan Cazenove

Ben Davies, Jamie Riddell

Tel: +44 20 7742 4000

WH Ireland

Adrian Hadden

Tel: +44 20 7220 1666

Media Enquiries


Jos Simson, Mike Bartlett,

Emily Fenton

Tel: +44 20 7920 3150


About Sirius Minerals Plc

Sirius Minerals is the fertilizer development company focused on the development of its North Yorkshire polyhalite project, the United Kingdom.  It has the world's largest and highest grade deposit of polyhalite, a multi-nutrient form of potash containing potassium, sulphur, magnesium and calcium.  Incorporated in 2003, Sirius Minerals' shares are traded on the London Stock Exchange's AIM market.  Its shares are also traded in the United States on the OTCQX through a sponsored ADR facility.  Further information on the Company can be found at:

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