Kinross Gold Corp announced on Wednesday it will buy gold explorer Great Bear Resources for about $1.42 billion.
The Canadian miner will pay Great Bear shareholders an equivalent of about C$29 per share on a fully diluted basis. They have the option to receive that in cash or as 3.8564 Kinross shares.
The deal represents a premium of 26.5% to Great Bear’s last close on Wednesday.
Great Bear Dixie project in northwestern Ontario is considered one of the most important Canadian gold discoveries in modern history.
The property consists of 9,140 hectares of contiguous claims extending over 22 kilometers. The project is accessible year-round by highway and is close to significant infrastructure, including paved roads, electricity and a natural gas pipeline provided by the town of Red Lake, about 25 km to the northwest.
To date, Great Bear has completed more than 340,000 meters of drilling in 794 drill holes and has identified five high-grade gold discoveries.
“The Dixie project represents an exciting opportunity to develop a potentially top-tier deposit into a large, long-life mine complex,” Kinross Chief Executive Officer Paul Rollinson said.
“Dixie’s closest geological analog, the large Hemlo gold mine, was historically operated by three separate companies prior to its consolidation and has produced over 20 million ounces of gold in more than 30 continuous years of operation. Great Bear shareholders will now be in a unique position to benefit from the potential of the top-tier Dixie project under one company and will maintain strong exposure to the project through their Kinross shares,” said Great Bear CEO Chris Taylor.
Great Bear’s stock rose 4% Wednesday afternoon, taking the company’s market capitalization to C$1.32 billion ($1.04 billion).