First Nickel Inc.

First Nickel Inc.

March 07, 2011 15:36 ET

First Nickel Provides Update on Lockerby Restart

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 7, 2011) - First Nickel Inc. ("First Nickel" or the "Company") (TSX:FNI) is pleased to report that it is making excellent progress in its plans to resume production at its Lockerby nickel / copper mine, located in Sudbury. Both financing and project schedules are on track for commencement of production in the third quarter of this year and a ramp-up to full production of 10 million pounds per year of nickel and 7 million pounds per year of copper by mid 2012.

In October 2010, the Company launched its recommissioning capital program at the Lockerby mine after receiving a bridge facility of US$5M from Resource Capital Fund IV L.P. Following completion of a $28M equity financing in November 2010, the program was accelerated and the following activities are underway or completed:

  • Detailed engineering began in November
  • Rehab work on various conveyances and mobile equipment is well-advanced and on target
  • The supplier for the mobile equipment lease has been chosen, and delivery of the first 42T truck was made the past week
  • The Company anticipates selecting the mining contractor for the ramp development program very shortly with mobilization planned in April.
  • The Company is actively recruiting for a number of key staff positions
  • Twenty-eight P&M employees have been recalled to date.

On March 1st, the Company announced that another milestone was achieved toward the securing of a $30M debt financing required to complete the funding of the development project.

"There has been a great deal of concentrated effort by our team to ensure a successful restart of the Lockerby mine. Our schedules and restart budgets are on track, and we continue to focus all planning, engineering and recommissioning activities on meeting 2011 objectives. I am very pleased with the energy and drive everyone has shown, and I am confident we will meet our goal of initial production beginning in the third quarter of 2011", said William Anderson, President & CEO.

About First Nickel

First Nickel is a Canadian mining and exploration company that has recently commenced restart activities at its Lockerby nickel / copper mine in the Sudbury Basin in northern Ontario. Once the Lockerby mine reaches full production (expected in 2012), it will produce approximately 10 million pounds of nickel and approximately 7 million pounds of copper annually. In addition to the Lockerby nickel mine, the Company owns exploration properties in the Sudbury Basin, the Timmins region of northern Ontario, and the Belmont region of Eastern Ontario. First Nickel's shares are traded on the TSX under the symbol FNI.

Some of the statements contained in this news release are forward-looking statements, such as statements that describe First Nickel's future plans, intentions, objectives or goals, and specifically include but are not limited to future production and the completion of the Facility. Actual results and developments may differ materially from those contemplated by such forward-looking statements depending on, among others, fluctuating metal prices, completion of additional financing initiatives, maintaining operating and exploration teams, continued care and maintenance of the Lockerby Mine, and other factors described in the Company's most recently filed Annual Information Form under the heading "Risk Factors" which has been filed electronically by means of the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval ("SEDAR") located at The forward-looking statements included in this document represent First Nickel's views as of the date of this document and subsequent events and developments may cause First Nickel's views to change. Readers should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements.

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