Coeur d’Alene Mines and Orko Silver announced an agreement on February 20, 2013, whereby Coeur will acquire Orko in a transaction having a total value of approximately C$350 million in cash and Coeur shares. The Coeur-Orko agreement followed an announcement by First Majestic Silver on February 19 that it would not exercise its right to match Coeur’s offer.
First Majestic started the bidding for Orko in mid-December 2012 with an agreed offer to acquire Orko, assuming Orko did not receive a superior proposal from another company. Coeur’s offer was deemed a superior proposal.
Orko’s primary asset is its La Preciosa silver property in Durango state, Mexico, 47 km northeast of the city of Durango. In September 2012, Orko announced an updated resource estimate for La Preciosa of 99 million oz of silver indicated in 29.7 million mt grading 104 g/mt silver and 140 million oz of silver inferred in 49.6 million mt grading 87 g/mt silver. 95% of the resource is accessible to open-pit mining methods.
Coeur President and CEO Mitchell J. Krebs said, “La Preciosa is one of the largest undeveloped silver deposits in the world and adds a large-scale development opportunity with significant exploration upside to Coeur’s portfolio. The combination with Orko will deliver enhanced asset and geographic portfolio diversification and robust growth prospects for our combined shareholder base.”
The transaction requires the approval of at least 66-2/3% of the votes cast by Orko shareholders at a special meeting expected to take place in April 2013. Assuming Orko shareholders approve the transaction and all court and regulatory approvals are obtained, the transaction is expected to close in April.
Following completion of the transaction, the current shareholders of Orko will hold approximately 11% of the issued and outstanding shares of Coeur.