Friday, 29 June 2012

Great Panther Silver elects new board members, adopts shareholder rights plan

Great Panther Silver (TSE:GPR)(AMEX:GPL) reported late Thursday the election of new board nominees John Jennings and Dick Whittington as directors of the company, and the approval of a new shareholder rights plan at the miner's annual general meeting.
Jennings has almost three decades of experience in the Canadian and international financial services industry, having held positions at firms including BMO Nesbitt Burns, Lehman Brothers International, RBS Financial, HSBC Group and CIBC.
In his time as a mining analyst and senior investment banker, he executed many M&A deals, and raised debt and equity capital for public, private and sovereign clients.
He recently joined Korn/Ferry International, an executive search and talent management firm.
Great Panther's other board nominee Whittington is a mining engineer with over 35 years of experience in Canada, Australia, Panama, Mexico and Papua New Guinea.
He most recently was president, CEO and a director of PNG GOLD, an advanced stage gold exploration company located in Papua New Guinea.
Prior to this, he was president, CEO and a director of Farallon Mining, where he brought Farallon's G-9 polymetalic zinc mine in Guerrero State, Mexico into production in less than four years.
Whittington led the company from exploration to commercial production, before aiding in the friendly takeover of Farallon by Nyrstar N.V., a Belgium zinc mining and smelting company, for $409 million in January 2011.
Great Panther also announced Thursday that its shareholders approved the adoption of a new rights plan in an effort to protect stockholders in the event of a hostile takeover attempt.
The company said it is not aware of any pending or threatened take-over bids.
The shareholder rights plan will provide the board with sufficient time to assess any take-over bid or other control transaction, and will help explore alternative options for maximizing shareholder value.
The rights will become exercisable only when a person or party purchases or announces its intention to acquire 20 per cent or more of the outstanding common shares of the company without complying with the "permitted bid" provisions of the plan.
A permitted bid is a bid made to all shareholders on identical terms that is open for at least 60 days. If a non-permitted acquisition occurs, each right will allow each holder of common shares to purchase additional common shares of the company at a 50 per cent discount to the market price at the time.
The shareholder rights plan becomes effective today, and will continue until the annual meeting of shareholders in 2016.
Great Panther is a primary silver mining and exploration company focused on its two wholly-owned operating mines in Mexico, Guanajuato and Topia.
The company also owns a development stage property, San Ignacio, which is approximately 20 kilometres by road from its Guanajuato processing plant, and an exploration stage property, Santa Rosa, which is located 15 kilometres northeast of Guanajuato.
The company said in May that its first quarter results met company expectations. President and CEO Robert Archer said the results were in line with forecasts given lower production and the lower metal price environment, as well as record quarterly output a year ago.
The company expects a range of 2.5 to 2.75 million silver equivalent ounces of production this year, compared to 2.2 million ounces in 2011. Total cash costs are expected in the range of $9.50 to $10.50 an ounce, from $10.84 in 2011.
For the first quarter, the company posted a profit of $4.68 million, or 3 cents per diluted share, versus a profit of $7.01 million, or 5 cents per diluted share, in the year-ago period.
Revenue totalled $13.63 million, down from $15.46 million a year earlier. Total cash cost per silver ounce was $9.05, down from $10.33 in the first quarter of 2011.
Great Panther also said in May that it is pursuing acquisition opportunities in Mexico and Peru to add to its portfolio of properties.
Shares of Great Panther increased 3.59 per cent to $1.73 Friday afternoon.

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