27 July 2023 – TRUSTCO GROUP ANNOUNCES US$75 MILLION COINVESTMENT IN ITS RESOURCES PORTFOLIO
Trustco today announced a transformative US$75 million coinvestment in its resources portfolio, specifically in its Meya diamond mining investment in Sierra Leone. The capital injection will fully fund the mine’s accelerated production ramp-up and enables Trustco to recycle its initial investment capital in line with its investment strategy.
Sterling Global Trading has committed to a US$50 million investment comprising US$25 million in equity for a 70% stake and a US$25 million loan. An additional US$25 million loan is expected from third-party capital sources.
“As part of the team that initially approved Trustco’s investment in Meya years ago, it is deeply gratifying to see this project come full circle and deliver significant value,” commented Quinton Zandré van Rooyen, Deputy CEO of Trustco Group. “We are proud to partner with a globally respected player like Sterling possessing unrivalled expertise in diamond mining. With their assistance, Meya is poised to scale its world-class underground operations exponentially as we pursue increased production. Since inception as a concept in 2016, Meya has developed into a thriving enterprise supplying over 400 jobs and uplifting local communities. This transaction represents a major milestone, allowing Trustco shareholders to realize significant value from the early-stage investment and ensures that Trustco is well positioned to provide exceptional returns to investors for years to come.”
Meya holds a large-scale mining license spanning 129 km2 in Sierra Leone’s prolific eastern diamond fields. Initial exploration indicates a resource of 7 million carats, underpinning a 15-year underground mine plan targeting 1 million carats annual production.
The capital injection will facilitate key enhancements like the commissioning of a state-of-the-art NIR waste sorter and expanded plant capacity. It also provides operating funds to accelerate underground development.
Trustco retains a 19.5% stake in Meya, while local investor Germinate SL holds 10.5%. The deal enables Trustco to re-balance its investment portfolio after investing approximately US$116 million in the diamond mine.
Trustco’s stake is now poised to deliver strong returns. Meya has delivered its first underground production during July 2023, with the long-term mine plan primed to generate sustainable high-margin diamond output positioning it as a tier one asset.
This investment marks an important step in crystallizing value for Trustco shareholders. Meya’s world-class development is set to enhance Trustco’s diamond mining operations and sustain positive momentum across its diverse portfolio.