Ma’aden finalizes deal to explore Saudi Arabia’s key mining resources

15 May 2023 Riyadh, KSA
maadem news
  • Joint venture with Ivanhoe Electric to undertake one of the largest exploration programs ever conducted
  • Agreement supports Vision 2030, which positions mining as a third pillar of the Saudi economy
  • Ma’aden, which is majority-owned by PIF, aims to grow tenfold by 2040 and to move into strategic minerals
Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden) one of the fastest-growing mining companies in the world, has finalized its agreement with Ivanhoe Electric Inc. (IE) to purchase 9.9% shares in the company and form a 50/50 joint venture (JV) to conduct one of the largest exploration programs ever undertaken.
Through the JV, Ma’aden will gain access to Typhoon, IE’s geophysical survey technology. This will accelerate mining exploration in Saudi Arabia, which is estimated to hold US$1.3tn of untapped minerals.
The Ma’aden exploration plans support Saudi Vision 2030, the nation’s diversification roadmap, which places mining as a third pillar of the Saudi economy. Metals and mining is also a priority sector for PIF, which serves as an economic engine driving Saudi Arabia’s transformation strategy.
As a champion of the mining industry, Ma’aden – which is majority-owned by PIF – aims to grow tenfold by 2040 and to move into strategic minerals to boost downstream industries in Saudi Arabia.
Robert Wilt, CEO of Ma’aden, said: “We are launching one of the largest exploration programs in the world in partnership with Ivanhoe Electric. It’s great to see companies like IE recognize the scale of the opportunity here. We have only scratched the surface of the potential in the Kingdom, and we need to explore faster, smarter and cover more ground to meet our long-term growth objectives.”
The JV between Ivanhoe Electric and Ma’aden will explore at least 48,500 km2 of land, an area larger than Denmark, with potential to discover major new copper, nickel, gold, silver and other strategic mineral reserves.
As part of the deal, Ma’aden will acquire approximately 10.2 million common shares in IE for US$126.5 million with a top-up option to maintain its 9.9% ownership. The JV will utilize US$66 million of the US$126.5 million to fund exploration activities and the purchase of three new-generation Typhoon machines. Ma’aden has been granted the right to appoint a nominee to the IE board of directors.
The formation of the JV and the acquisition of 9.9% shares in IE will only be effective after fulfilling certain conditions.