RNC Minerals has expanded its gold portfolio with the successful purchase of the Higginsville gold operation from Westgold.

RNC Minerals (TSX:RNX,OTCQX:RNKLF) has officially acquired Westgold Resources’ (ASX:WGX) Higginsville gold operation (HGO) in Australia, the company announced on Tuesday (June 11).

As per the agreement, RNC has paid Westgold AU$25 million for the gold-bearing asset and its mill, and it has issued a total of 56.9 million shares.

RNC stated that the acquisition is another step forward in building its gold portfolio. HGO will now join the Beta Hunt mine, the company’s original yellow metal-focused project.

“The combination of the Higginsville mill and our Beta Hunt mine will transform RNC’s gold operations in Western Australia into a multi-mine operation, anchored by the 1.3 million tonne per annum HGO Mill, the high grade and bulk resource potential at Beta Hunt and a large land position in the Kalgoorlie gold region,” said Mark Selby, president and CEO of RNC.

With the transaction completed, Westgold now holds over 56.9 million shares in RNC, which is a 10.3 percent stake in the Canadian miner.

“This is a good outcome for both parties and for all the employees who have transferred to RNC under the transaction. It allows Westgold to focus on its main game in the Murchison region of WA where, after three years of heavy investment, our expenditure is beginning to reduce and output continues to rise,” stated Peter Cook, managing director of Westgold.

Higgingsville has a historical reserve of 367,000 ounce of gold, with a 1.2 million ounce measured and indicated gold resource. The operation is located in Australia’s prolific Kalgoorlie gold region.

Selby said that RNC tolled material from its Beta Hunt mine through the HGO mill last year, and by doing so was able to achieve gold recoveries of 94 percent.

In addition to the acquisition, just last week RNC reported the discovery of additional high-grade gold at Beta Hunt, unearthing coarse gold in quartz veins just below the Father’s Day vein.

The miner noted that approximately 987 ounces of coarse gold were recovered in 238 kilograms of rock from multiple veins.

“This most recent discovery provides further support for our geological model that predicts that the areas where the mineralized shear zone and sedimentary sulphides intersect are capable of generating ‘Father’s Day vein’ style coarse gold mineralization, and proves that such areas extend at least 25 metres below the Father’s Day vein discovery,” Selby said following the find.

RNC uncovered the Father’s Day vein last September, reporting that it held over 9,000 ounces of gold in a relatively small space. Gold from the vein was later boosted to 24,000 ounces worth US$38 million.

The miner then recovered the first specimen slab from the Father’s Day vein in October. The discovery weighed 90 kilograms and the slab was estimated to contain 1,000 ounces of gold.

As of 11:28 a.m. EDT on Wednesday (June 12), RNC was trading at C$0.49 and Westgold was trading at AU$1.58.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Resource for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Nicole Rashotte, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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