Blackstone Ventures Inc.
TSX VENTURE : BLV

Blackstone Ventures Inc.

January 16, 2007 09:43 ET

REPEAT: Blackstone Purchases Xstrata Nickel's Interest in Norway Exploration Projects

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 16, 2007) - Blackstone Ventures Inc. (TSX VENTURE:BLV) is pleased to announce that Blackstone and its joint venture partner Sulfidmalm A/S (a wholly owned subsidiary of Xstrata Nickel) and Xstrata Nickel have come to terms under which Blackstone will acquire 100% of the outstanding shares of Sulfidmalm for a total of US $15.5 million. Sulfidmalm's main assets are the interest it holds in the Norway Option and Joint Venture projects with Blackstone.

The Norway Option and Joint Venture projects with Sulfidmalm comprise the Espedalen Joint Venture, the Vakkerlien Option and the South Norway Option. The South Norway Option encompasses five large areas (Bamble, Ertelien, Skjaekerdalen, Evje and Hosanger). By completing this agreement Blackstone will control 100% of the Norwegian projects and remove all conditions of the previous Option and Joint Venture Agreements.

Donald McInnes, President of Blackstone stated "We are extremely pleased to have made this agreement with Xstrata Nickel. Purchasing a 100% interest in Xstrata's Norwegian subsidiary Sulfidmalm, allows the Company to directly control and accelerate the exploration and development for nickel sulphide deposits in Norway. We feel that these seven Project areas cover some of the most prospective terrain in the world for the discovery of a world-class nickel deposit. For Norway, it is our intention to dramatically ramp up our exploration efforts in 2007 with the goal of having at least three drills operating by the end of March and a budget of $4.5 million. Dean MacEachern, Blackstone's COO, has recently assembled an eight member, highly experienced team of nickel exploration professionals who are eager to commence exploration as quickly as possible."

Under the terms of the agreement Blackstone would acquire 100% of the outstanding shares in Sulfidmalm from Xstrata Nickel for total cumulative payments of US$15.5 million, to be completed no later than December 31, 2010 as follows:

(a) Blackstone would acquire 22% of the shares of Sulfidmalm for US$3,500,000, payable within 20 days of the later of execution of a definitive Option Agreement and receipt of approval from the TSX Venture Exchange to the definitive Option Agreement.

(b) Blackstone would acquire an additional 19.5% of the shares of Sulfidmalm for US$3,000,000, payable on or before December 31, 2007.

(c) Blackstone would acquire an additional 19.5% of the shares of Sulfidmalm for US$3,000,000, payable on or before December 31, 2008.

(d) Blackstone would acquire an additional 19.5% of the shares of Sulfidmalm for US$3,000,000, payable on or before December 31, 2009.

(e) Blackstone would acquire the remaining 19.5% of the shares of Sulfidmalm for US$3,000,000, payable on or before December 31, 2010.

These payments can be accelerated at Blackstone's option. Xstrata Nickel will retain no back in rights to any of the properties in Norway. Completion of the agreement is conditional on regulatory approval and that of the Boards of Blackstone and Xstrata Nickel.

The agreement also stipulates Xstrata Nickel will have the right of first refusal to purchase the concentrate or product produced from the Properties. Such right of first refusal will be on terms that are substantially the same or better for Blackstone than the terms for arm's lengths sales at approximately the same time for comparable contract periods for products of the type, quantity and quality comparable to the concentrate or product produced from the Properties.

The information in this release was prepared under the direction of Dean MacEachern, P. Geo., Chief Operating Officer for Blackstone, a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101.

On behalf of Blackstone Ventures Inc.

Donald A. McInnes, President

The TSX Venture Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Contact Information

  • Blackstone Ventures Inc.
    Robert Carriere
    Manager, Investor Relations
    (604) 687-3929
    Website: www.blv.ca