The Chinese backers of Kagara are preparing a financing package to rescue the company for the second time in four years, floating proposals that could see the collapsed base metals miner return to the Australian Securities Exchange.
WestBusiness understands that China's Guangdong Foreign Trade Group (GFTG) is working with Kagara founder Joe Treacy on a deed of company arrangement to pay out the bulk of Kagara's creditors, with the company targeting a May return to the Australian bourse.
A subsidiary of GFTG, Guangdong Guangxin Mining Resources, is one of Kagara's major secured creditors, owed at least $19 million, according to disclosures released just before Kagara collapsed in April 2012. GFTG was the major backer of a $226 million rescue package for Kagara in June 2009, chipping in $57 million and later spending an additional $34 million to take its stake in the Queensland miner to just below 20 per cent.
Sources say Kagara collapsed owing about $150 million, including $36 million to secured creditors. About $113 million was owed to unsecured creditors, including its workers and suppliers and contractors in North Queensland.
About $30 million was raised through the sale of its central North Queensland assets to Hong Kong investment company Snow Peak Mining earlier this year. A sale of Kagara's northernmost Mungana assets could still raise another $20 million to $50 million, with potential buyers still conducting due diligence investigations.
That could leave as much as $70 million to $100 million owing. Sources say an early GFTG proposal would have fully paid out creditors owed less than $1 million, with bigger debtors paid 50Â¢ in the dollar. It is understood negotiations are continuing, however, with creditors pushing for payment of at least 75 per cent of money owed.
Mr Treacy could not be contacted for comment yesterday, but is understood to be working with GFTG on the plan in the hope the company can return to the market - badged as Kagara Exploration.
Former chief executive Geoff Day, while still a Kagara director, quit his executive role in December and is no longer on the Kagara payroll.Kagara administrators Taylor Woodings would not comment on details of the proposal yesterday, but said it was considering a deed of company arrangement to recapitalise Kagara. A spokesman said a second creditors meeting would be held in early May to consider any proposals.
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