Who’s doing what in the super-charged Saskatchewan uranium play
by Greg Klein
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Denison gets Fission Energy, spinco Fission Uranium gets Patterson Lake South
It’s a done deal, both companies announced April 26. Denison Mines TSX:DML closed its acquisition of Fission Energy TSXV:FIS. The latter company stops trading at the close of April 29 but a new outfit, Fission Uranium Corp TSXV:FCU, is expected to begin trading on May 1. (Update: Fission Uranium Corp TSXV:FCU began trading on April 30, 2013.) Fission Uranium will retain the Fission Energy team and their most celebrated asset, a 50% interest in Patterson Lake South.
For each Fission Energy share, holders get 0.355 of a Denison share, a full Fission Uranium share and, for good measure, one ten-thousandth of a penny. The new company also gets about $17 million from Denison, a handy sum to continue its share of PLS drilling while shopping for other properties.
The acquisition went much as planned except for a late decision to change the new company’s stock ticker to FCU. It was originally registered as FUC.
Read more about the Denison/Fission acquisition here.
Patterson Lake South rolls out the results
Patterson Lake South, meanwhile, continues to shock and awe the market with near-surface results showing off-scale scintillometer readings and high-grade assays about every week—at least.
Just a couple of examples: An April 22 announcement reported assays of 6.57% U3O8 over 53 metres, including 29.26% over 10.5 metres. The intercept started at a downhole depth of 95 metres. Only two days later came assays of 6.26% over 49.5 metres, including 35% over 6 metres, starting at 66 metres in downhole depth.
A 50/50 joint venture between Fission Energy and Alpha Minerals TSXV:AMW, the PLS discovery sparked the current staking rush around the Athabasca Basin’s southwestern rim. Alpha filed an NI 43-101 technical report for the property on April 14.
Read more about the Athabasca Basin staking rush here.
Alpha private placement closes at $12.28 million
While Fission Uranium starts off with about $17 million from Denison, its JV partner-to-be, Alpha Minerals, has just picked up $12.28 million. On April 25 the company announced completion of 1.2 million flow-through shares at $4.40 each and 1.75 million units at $4. Each unit consists of one non-flow-through share and half of a warrant. Each whole warrant will be exercisable at $5 for 24 months.
The private placement was originally offered up to $7.28 million, but was increased by $5 million on April 9.
NexGen now on the TSXV
Its reverse takeover with Clermont Capital complete, NexGen Energy Ltd TSXV:NXE made its Venture debut on April 23. NexGen interprets its flagship Radio property to be on the same structural trend as Rio Tinto’s Roughrider deposit and Denison’s Waterbury Lake J-zone. NexGen holds an option to acquire an initial 70%, then the remaining 30% subject to a 2% NSR.
Another NexGen standout is Rook 1, immediately northeast of Patterson Lake South.
Under a JV within a JV, NexGen and Forum Uranium TSXV:FDC have an option to earn 30% each of the Northwest Athabasca project, currently held 87.5% by Cameco Corp TSX:CCO and 12.5% by AREVA Resources. On April 10 project operator Forum announced completion of a 3,500-metre program that hit uranium mineralization in eight of 17 holes.
Last November NexGen picked up 10 Canadian uranium properties from Mega Uranium TSXV:MGA. On April 22 Mega acquired an approximately 25.2% interest in NexGen, which currently has about $6 million on hand.
As for Waterbury and the J-zone …
In the eastside Basin neighbourhood of Radio and Roughrider, Waterbury Lake is now held 60% by Denison, a result of its Fission Energy acquisition. A consortium headed by the Korean power utility Kepco holds the remaining 40%.
Last winter Fission Energy sunk 68 holes totalling over 21,000 metres to define and expand the project’s J-zone. Scintillometer results announced April 5 showed mineralization in 35 holes. Assays are pending for this final stage of a three-year, $30-million campaign.
Forum to fly Clearwater
In addition to its NexGen collaboration, Forum plans an airborne magnetic and electromagnetic survey over its 100%-held, 9,910-hectare Clearwater property immediately southwest of Patterson Lake South. Funding comes from a $500,000 private placement that closed April 23.
Denison drills turn Wheeler River
On the Basin’s east side, winter drilling at Denison’s 60% Wheeler River project completed 14,577 metres in 27 holes. On April 24 the company announced it had extended the new 489 zone along strike by 65 metres. The zone lies 2.1 kilometres from the project’s Phoenix deposits, which Denison calls “the most significant new uranium discovery in the Athabasca Basin in many years.”
Lakeland stakes more land
Now a “pure play uranium exploration company focused on the Athabasca Basin,” Lakeland Resources TSXV:LK announced on April 25 it had staked three more properties. The Small Lake, Hawkrock Rapids and Circle Lake properties total 54,745 hectares in the northern and northeastern Basin.
The news followed an April 2 announcement that Lakeland staked two other northern Basin properties, the 9,645-hectare Otherside and 35,429-hectare Riou Lake. All five properties, totalling nearly 100,000 hectares, were chosen on the basis of previous work by former operators. Lakeland intends to study historic data prior to planning a work program.
The company has also signed a non-binding letter of intent for eight other Basin properties totalling about 190,000 hectares.
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