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  • TNR Gold: Los Azules Litigation: Time May Be Ripe For Copper M&A To Flourish TNR.v, MUX 0 comments
    May 23, 2012 11:30 AM | about stocks: ABX, TRRXF, MUX, GALXF, RDNAF, OROCF, LITHF, TLTHF, FMC, ROC, LIT, MCP, REE, F, TM, GM, NSANF, DOW, AONEQ, JCI, IBM, BASFY, FCX, RIO, BHP, TCK, SSNLF, TSLA, CAR, VALE, BYDDY, POT, ALLRF, MOS, SOIL, IPI, NPTH, PPRTF-OLD

    (click to enlarge)

    We will address all interested parties to the web-cast of yesterday's Conference Call with McEwen Mining:

    McEwen Mining Corporate Update Conference Call

    Here we will provide some additional public information on Los Azules litigation, so that you can have the full picture and decide why McEwen Mining is so worried, why now and what actually they are talking about:

    Rob McEwen:

    "We are blessed with having a number of world class properties, properties of long life and such size that they are of interest to the large number of players - particularly, Los Azules Copper project, where we have encouragement in drilling this year. We have discussions about partial or full sale of this property, which could provide some or all of the funding we need to carry on our business. These discussions have been going on for a while now, but we will certainly step up that tempo..."

    In the end of the conference call TNR Gold litigation is mentioned with the Merger Offer proposal from unnamed party and Rob McEwen has pointed, as usual, to the TNR Gold share price - this attention to the junior market is also very interesting in light of the all recent developments.

    Timing of a very fortunate Sales of McEwen Mining shares by Former CEO of Minera Andes Mr Allen Ambrose becomes particularly interesting in light of all recent warnings for McEwen Mining shareholders about "Argentina Situation".

    Former CEO of Minera Andes Allen Ambrose Sold McEwen Mining $MUX worth 1.7 M in Febuary 2012 with price range 5.65 - 5.69

    You can find more information about emails of Mr Allen Ambrose presented as evidence in public court documents of Los Azules litigation below.

     

    TNR Gold: Los Azules Litigation: McEwen Mining Will Deliver New Resource Estimates By The End Of June. TNR.v, MUX


    "Maybe this is where the real problem is - Chief Owner, finally, shares with Other Owners the information and it is too much to handle for them at once? Los Azules litigation case went through an interesting transformation this year - from being the "lawsuit without merit" to the McEwen Maps outlining the High Grade Core of Los Azules being located on former TNR Gold properties, which junior is claiming to be returned back.

    Los Azules resource will, hopefully, grow further - latest estimate for 12.5 billion lb of Copper in all categories was done in 2010."

    McEwen Mining reports:

    "In the near term, we will be delivering new resource estimates for Los Azules and El Gallo by the end of June. "

    TNR Gold Receives Third Party Proposal and Provides Los Azules Project Update TNR.v


    Copper Investing News:

     

    Time May Be Ripe for Copper M&A to FlourishWednesday May 23, 2012, 4:15am PDT
    By Shihoko Goto - Exclusive to Copper Investing News

    With global demand for copper expected to outstrip supply, and the price of the red metal down from its highs of nearly $4 earlier this year, now may be a good time to move aggressively in the market. There are already signs that copper producers both large and small plan to forge new alliances and press ahead with buyouts in anticipation of greater demand.

    Total global merger and acquisition activity in the mining sector rose 130 percent in the first quarter of this year from the previous quarter to reach US$90 billion, according to KPMG'sMining M&A Quarterly Newsletter. Granted, that was mostly a result of the proposed merger between Glencore International (LSE:GLEN) and Xstrata (LSE:XTA), which was announced in February; the deal will be the largest mining transaction in history if it goes ahead, and may significantly shift the industry's landscape in the future. After all, it would create the third-largest copper group in the world and become the fourth-largest diversified mining company after BHP Billiton(ASX:BHP), Vale (NYSE:VALE), and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO). Yet even without that mega-merger, there were over 81 mining transactions in the latest quarter, compared to under 50 in the fourth quarter of 2011, KPMG found.

    Looking solely at copper mergers, there were a total of ten transactions during the latest quarter for a combined total deal value of $13 billion. The most high profile was Rio Tinto's move to become the majority shareholder in Ivanhoe Mines (NYSE:IVN,TSX:IVN), which operates the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia. Oyu Tolgoi is slated to begin initial production by the end of this year, and commercial production is projected to begin by the first half of 2013.

    Hopes may be high for Oyu Tolgoi, which will be one of the world's largest copper mines, and other mega-projects, but some analysts argue that this is not the best time for companies to be making aggressive moves. Indeed, both Rio Tinto and BHP suggested this month that they may be scaling back their investment plans amid increasing worries about a further global economic downturn. BHP's chairman, Jacques Nasser, stated that the company is rethinking its expansion plans "every day," while Rio Tinto's CEO, Tom Albanese, said "increasing costs are an industry-wide problem…[w]e must ensure we are proactively tackling issues now that may impact productivity in years to come."

    Still, 2011 was a strong year for copper M&A activity. According to the Metals Economics Group's Strategic Report, released this month, copper deals dominated base metals acquisitions spending, and accounted for the bulk of the 47 percent increase in the total base metals spending of $29 billion in 2011. Looking at the geographic breakdown of 2011′s global mining acquisitions, of the 51 percent of acquired projects Canada accounted for 25 percent market share followed by the US with 15 percent and Australia.

    Looking ahead, corporate deals in the copper sector may remain strong, but more action could take place outside of the obvious locations such as North America and Australia. PwC expects a record year of mining M&A driven by cash-rich senior and intermediate mining groups, with Africa becoming a "more viable M&A geography with growth market buyers in particular, driving substantial acquisition volumes." PwC also expects M&A deals to be robust despite a 21 percent drop in copper prices in 2011 as the spot price of copper nonetheless averaged $4 a pound, 17 percent higher than the 2010 price and 24 percent higher than in 2007. Indeed, Morgan Stanleypointed out that Chinese demand for copper will support prices in the latter half of the year, stating that "we think the timing of a rebound in copper prices will be in large part determined by the speed at which China churns through its domestic inventory, which will necessitate a return to the import market…[f]urthermore, with the majority of known copper inventory concentrated in the U.S. and East Asia, demand weakness outside of these regions will be offset by supply tightness."

    Meanwhile, demand is expected to outstrip supply, with inventories remaining low, especially as labor strikes at major mines worldwide continue to disrupt output. In addition, it is taking longer to produce lower-quality copper, which is encouraging companies both large and small to forge partnerships and pursue buyouts to meet ever-growing demand from consumers in developing economies in particular, PwC said.

    Conflict among major copper producers

    The drama among major producers is also likely to continue. As investors await the closure of the Xstrata-Glencore deal, they will also be keeping close tabs on the ongoing conflict between Anglo American (LSE:AAL) and Codelco as the latter continues to press its right to exercise the option to acquire a 49 percent stake in Anglo American Sur. In late 2011, Anglo American agreed to sell a 24.5 percent stake in its Chilean unit to Japan's Mitsubishi Corp. (TSE:8058) for $6.7 billion. As a result, Anglo American has argued that Codelco can now only have the remaining 24.5 percent stake in the company. When and how a settlement will be reached between the two sides remain in question.

    Such legal disputes, however, are not uncommon and are unlikely to reverse the tide of copper companies looking to strengthen their position with another group, either through a merger or a buyout. This month, for instance, TNR Gold (TSXV:TNR) received an offer from an unnamed company to merge with TNR and acquire TNR's copper and gold properties in Argentina. However, TNR is in dispute with McEwen Mining (NYSE:MUX) over the title to a significant part of the Los Azules property; a trial to settle the issue will start in November and should last for about six weeks.

    TNR's Chairman, Kirill Klip, stated that "the Los Azules project is considered to represent one of the largest undeveloped copper projects in the world but the current legal uncertainty over its legal ownership is detracting from the value of the project for shareholders of both TNR and McEwen Mining."

    Even with stumbling blocks, the quest to secure a steady copper supply in the coming years may continue to fan the flames of more M&A activity from both major and junior miners in the near future.

    Securities Disclosure: I, Shihoko Goto, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article."

    (click to enlarge)

    TNR Gold Corp. Presentation.

    (click to enlarge)

    Reuters:

    TNR Gold Receives Third Party Proposal and Provides Los Azules Project Update

    Fri May 11, 2012 8:25pm EDT

    VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, May 11 (MARKET WIRE) -- TNR Gold Corp. (the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:TNR) has received an unsolicited proposal from a third party to merge with TNR and to acquire TNR's wholly owned subsidiary Compania Minera Solitario Argentina S.A. ("Solitario"). The Company has called a meeting of the TNR Board of Directors to determine whether the proposal is sufficiently attractive to commence exclusive negotiations with the third party, and also to consider its other strategic alternatives. TNR and Solitario are currently in litigation with Minera Andes Inc. (and indirect subsidiary of McEwen Mining Inc.) and MIM Argentina Exploraciones S.A. The litigation (the "Los Azules Litigation") involves a challenge to title to a substantial portion of the mineral properties constituting the Los Azules Project in San Juan Province of Argentina. Specifically, TNR is challenging the title of Minera Andes Inc. and certain of its subsidiaries to the mineral properties constituting the northern half of the Los Azules project (the "Solitario Properties"). TNR is seeking return to it of a 100% interest in the Solitario Properties or damages; and, effectively, in the alternative, recognition of TNR's right to back-in to a 25% interest in the properties; together with recognition of TNR's interest in the related Escorpio IV property. A trial in the Courts of British Columbia is set to commence in November, 2012 and last for approximately six weeks. McEwen Mining is continuing a significant expansion drilling program at Los Azules, but has announced that it is focusing, and will continue to focus, its exploration efforts on the portion of the Los Azules mineral claims that are not subject to the ongoing litigation. Kirill Klip, Chairman of TNR commented that: "The Los Azules project is considered to represent one of the largest undeveloped copper projects in the world but the current legal uncertainty over its legal ownership is detracting from the value of the project for shareholders of both TNR and McEwen Mining. The third party proposal which we have received to purchase TNR, together with the fact that McEwen Mining has decided to limit its drilling activity to non-disputed mineral claims only are further validation of the value of TNR, its title claims and its prospects for success in the upcoming Los Azules litigation." The Los Azules Project is located in western San Juan Province within a belt of porphyry copper deposits that straddles the Chilean/Argentine border. This belt contains some of the world's largest copper deposits, including Codelco's El Teniente and Andina mines, Anglo American's Los Bronces mine, Antofagasta PLC's Los Pelambres mine and Xstrata's El Pachon project, among others. Shareholders and other interested parties are invited to review the Court filings relating to the Los Azules Litigation which are available from the BC Supreme Court registry database (BC Online) and are hosted on TNR's webpage at tnrgoldcorp.com/s/LosAzules.asp. ABOUT TNR GOLD CORP. Over the past twenty-one years TNR, through its lead generator business model, has been successful in generating high quality exploration projects around the globe. With the Company's expertise, resources and industry network, it is well positioned to aggressively identify, source, explore, partner and continue to expand its project portfolio. TNR's recently listed subsidiary, International Lithium Corp. (TSX VENTURE:ILC), demonstrated the successful application of TNR's business model in which TNR shareholders benefited from a unit distribution upon spin-out of TNR's lithium and rare metals projects. TNR remains a large shareholder in ILC at 25.5% of outstanding shares. At its core, TNR provides significant exposure to gold and copper through its holdings in Alaska and Argentina; and teamed with the recent acquisitions of rare-earth elements and iron ore projects in Canada confirm TNR's commitment to continued generation of in-demand projects, while diversifying its markets and building shareholder value. On behalf of the board, Gary Schellenberg, President - TNR Gold Corp. Statements in this press release other than purely historical information, historical estimates should not be relied upon, including statements relating to the Company's future plans and objectives or expected results, are forward-looking statements. News release contains certain "Forward-Looking Statements" within the meaning of Section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions and are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties inherent in the Company's business, including risks inherent in resource exploration and development. As a result, actual results may vary materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. In particular, there are no assurances that the third party proposal recently received by the Company will develop into a formal offer for the Company, or that any such formal offer would be attractive to, or result in the sae of, the Company. There are no assurances that the Company will decide to commence a formal sale process or that, if commenced, such sale process would result in an attractive offer and sale of the Company. There are no assurances that the Company will achieve a favourable outcome in the Los Azules litigation. CUSIP: #87260X 109 SEC 12g3-2(b): Exemption #82-4434 Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Contacts: TNR Gold Corp. Gary Schellenberg President (604) 687-7551 or 1-800-667-4470 (604) 687-4670 (NYSEMKT:FAX) info@tnrgoldcorp.com www.tnrgoldcorp.com"

    TNR Gold Vs. McEwen Mining:

    Los Azules

    "World's Sixth Largest Undeveloped Copper Deposit"

     

    TNR Gold litigation on Los Azules Copper Project - MCEWEN MINING EXPANSION DRILLING INTERSECTS 0.53% COPPER OVER 351 METERS TNR.v


    Thursday, May 10,2012

    Note: we are not sure that this particular Judge will be involved in this court hearing.

    Disclaimer (loosely based on investment bankers' small print): please read our full disclaimer, nothing on this website or any links provided should be relied upon in any way and nobody will accept any responsibility in any case.

    We are very pleased to see this development: acknowledgement of the ongoing litigation, its risks, property involved and proper representation of all necessary information for the shareholders. Annual General Meeting to be held by McEwen Mining on Thursday May 17, 2012 at 4:00 will provide a good opportunity to ask all questions about this developing story with "World's Sixth Largest Undeveloped Copper Deposit" - as Rob McEwen has called it.

    McEwen Mining reports:

    "A total of 2,835 meters were drilled this season in eight holes. A drill hole location map, a table of assay results and a cross section of the Los Azules resource are provided in Exhibits 1, 2 and 3. All of the drill holes from this season were completed on mineral claims that are not subject to ongoing litigation."

    MCEWEN MINING EXPANSION DRILLING INTERSECTS 0.53% COPPER OVER 351 METERS AT THE LOS AZULES PROJECT

    Page 5 provides, finally, McEwen Mining map outlining High Grade Core Copper Zone on TNR Gold's former properties called "100% Held mineral rights (subject to litigation) and surface ownership".

     

    TNR Gold litigation on Los Azules Copper Project, Argentina - Form 10-Q for MCEWEN MINING INC. TNR.v

    TNR Gold's Gary Schellenberg Discusses Gold Mining in Alaska and Los Azules Copper Project on Midas Letter Money TNR.v

    Public Court Documents on Los Azules litigation

    Update February 12th, 2012. CNNMoney:

     

    $1.7M of MUX sold by Allen Ambrose


    We guess, that at some stage Mr Allen Ambrose - former CEO of Minera Andes, will be questioned during the Los Azules litigation on what exactly were his intentions explained in his emails presented by TNR Gold litigation counsel in Amended Claim.

    Allen Ambrose emails:

    24. "Next we should look at our alternatives to take out the Solitario (TNR Gold - S) agreement..."TNR Gold vs Minera Andes (McEwen Mining now) and MIM (Xstrata now). From Page 11 Part 3: Legal Basis http://bit.ly/xhdqag

     

    Los Azules: Gold bug McEwen eyes big copper play - TNR Gold claims Northern Part of the project back

    Mcewen Mining: SEC filing: ITEM 1A. Risk Factors

    "The Los Azules copper project is subject to ongoing legal proceedings with the potential that we may lose all or part of our interest in the project.

    TNR Gold presentation with Maps of Los Azules.

    Please, do not forget, that we own stocks we are writing about and have position in these companies. We are not providing any investment advise on this blog and there is no solicitation to buy or sell any particular company here. Always consult with your qualified financial adviser before making any investment decisions.

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