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West LLB

West LLB
Based in Germany
Active in Kenya, Kazakhstan, Brazil, Australia, South Africa, Indonesia, Philippines, Peru, Chile, Saudia Arabia, United States, Sweden, Romania
Targeted base metals, precious metals

West LB is a German investment bank which, over the past five years, has become one of the world's major financial advisors to, and loan arrangers for, the global mining industry.

In 2006, West joined Standard Chartered (qv) and Caterpillar Financial SARL (qv) in underwriting Tiomin’s Kwale mineral sands project in Kenya; the biggest proposed new mine in the country, beset by local farmers’ legal actions and its failure to raise project finance, which has so far stalled the venture.

Late the same year, along with the Eurasian Development Bank and HVB, it provided US$ 120 million debt financing for Oriel Resources Plc’s Voskhod chrome project in Kazakhstan.

In February 2008, WestLB was sole book runner for a secured credit facility for MRN (Brazil) [WestLB advertisement, MJ 19 June 2009].

Two months later, in April 2008, it was mandated lead arranger of a US$375 million secured credit facility for PT Bumi Resources in Indonesia.

In July 2008, the bank provided a US$ 80,300,000 project finance facility to CGA for its Masbate Gold Project in the Philippines.

However, in January the same year, the bank reportedly withdrew from bankrolling the Toka Tindung gold mine project in northern Sulawesi (Indonesia) operated by UK-AIM listed Archipelago Resources and which had been accused by the local governor of operating illegally. [see MAC website, 21 January 2008; Mineweb 4 March 2008; see also: Baker Steel Capital Managers].

March 2009 saw WestLB also being the lead arranger for MIPLO’s acquisition finance facility for its projects in Peru and Chile.

In April 2009, the bank was bookrunner of a project finance facility for Mirabela Nickel Ltd, an Australian company planning to open one of the world’s largest nickel sulphide mines in Brazil later in 2009.

And, in May 2009, WestLB acted as sole book runner of a similar project finance facility for quadra mining, a Canadian copper company.

During July-September 2009, the bank also acted as joint lead arranger of US$350 million secured credit for Votorantim; was joint financial advisor for Citadel Resource Group in its Jabai Sayed project in Saudi Arabia; and became sole bookrunner for Ferrexpo’s equipment financing facility [MJ 9 October 2009].

As of May 2010, WestLB had acted as joint bookrunner for Mercator Minerals in the USA; as mandated lead arranger for Kaunisvaara's Iron Ore Project in Sweden; as mandated lead arranger for European Goldfield's controversial Certej Gold project in Romania; and as mandated lead arranger for Andean America's Invicta project in Peru [WestLB advertisement in MJ 7 May 2010].

As of May 13 2011, West LLB confirmed it had acted as the sole lead arranger for Trevali Corp's Santander Polymetallic Project in Peru; for Base Resources Ltd's Kwale Mineral Sands project in Kenya; and for Cobar Consolidated's Wonawinta silver project in Ausralia.

By August 2011, the bank was the lead arranger for a US$ 30 million secured credit facility for Luna Gold Corp in Brazil. It acted as joint mandated lead arranger for US$80 million of project financing for Beadell Resources Tucano gold project in Brazil. In addition, West LLB acted as mandated lead arranger for US$260 million project financing for Platinum Group Metals' Western Bushveld joint venture project in South Africa [advert by West LB in MJ 26 August 2011].

In October 2011, the bank acted as joint financial advisor on the provision of US1,800,000,000 in project financing for MMX's Serra Azui iron ore project in Brazil.

The bank has also acted in various capacities for the following companies since September 2010: Northland Resources (in Sweden); Rio Novo (in Brazil); Andean American Mining (Peru); Avanti Mining (Canada); Byrnecut Mining (Saudi Arabia); Pan American Silver (based in Canada): Consolidated Thompson Iron Mine Ltd (Canada); Baja Mining Corp (Mexico) and Lundin Mining (Canada) (see: Adolf H Lundin).