Fura raising $5.25 million for gemstone operations

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A selection of uncut and unpolished emerald crystals from the Coscuez Mine, Colombia. Source: Fura Gems Inc.

Fura Gems Inc. [FURA-TSXV; FUGMF-OTC; BJ43-FSE] said Monday November 26 that it is proceeding with a $5.25 million private placement that will be used to fund development of the company’s emerald and ruby assets in Colombia and Mozambique.

Fura is a member of the Forbes & Manhattan Group, a Toronto-based merchant banking group.

Fura bought a majority interest in the Coscuez Minein Colombia  in October, 2017, thinking it can significantly ramp up production at what is regarded as one of the world’s most prolific emerald producers. Coscuez earned that reputation after being in production for over 400 years, and yielding some of the world’s finest emeralds, including the 7,000-carat Emilia Emerald Crystal, the largest ever discovered.

Fura acquired the majority interest from Emporium HS S.A.S., a private Colombia-based company with the intention of increasing production via technology and procedural upgrades. The ultimate goal is to build an emerald supply chain in Colombia.

Emporium HS S.A.S., continues to hold a 21.71% stake in the operation which produced 34,078 carats of emeralds between the fourth quarter 2012, and the second quarter of 2017.

During an interview with Resource World Magazine, Fura President and CEO Dev Shetty said the company plans to focus exclusively on the sale of rough gemstones. It will not be involved in the subsequent processes such as cutting and polishing.

“Most of my clients are polishers of gems,” said Shetty, who spoke to Resource World while he was attending the Second World Emerald Symposium in Bogota, Colombia.  “We don’t get into cutting and polishing. Cutting and polishing is a different ballgame. It is very capital intensive.”

Aside for the mine in Columbia, Fura is involved in the exploration and mining of rubies in Mozambique through its 80% effective interest in the four ruby licences (4392, 3868, 3869 and 6811), covering 39,425 hectares, that it acquired in November 2017. It has subsequently agreed to acquire additional licenses that are located in the same geological best as licenses held by Gemfields.

The company’s long term goal is to build an operation with 6 million carats per year of capacity, at a cost of roughly US$16 million.

On Monday Fura said it intends to complete a private placement offering of up to 13.1 million common shares at 40 cents per share.

Fura advanced on the news rising 7.94% or $0.025 to 34 cents. The 52-week range is 30 cents and $1.13.

Net proceeds of the offering are expected to be used by the company for exploration and development its emerald and ruby assets. All Fura shares issued under the terms of the offering will be subject to a regulatory hold period of four months and one day.


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