AusBN - Raiden Resources (ASX:RDN) will enter a joint venture with Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) after the Australian junior signed a US$31.5 million agreement for its exploration licenses in Serbia.
The deal comprises of three prospective copper-gold licenses, namely the Zapadni Majdanpek, Majdanpek Pojas and Donje Nevlje licenses in the prolific Western Tethyan Metallogenic Belt in Eastern Europe.
The JV and earn-in arrangement will see Rio gain a 51% participating interest in the licenses for $2.5 million in a period of three years under stage one of the agreement.
After stage one, the Anglo-Australian giant will be able to earn a 14% interest for $9 million in the three-year period and an additional 10% stake for $20 million in the three-year period after stage two.
Raiden’s executive director Dusko Ljubojevic said: “Rio Tinto delivers a tremendous depth of experience in these styles of mineralisation and a commitment to the Western Tethyan belt, together with funding capacity to unlock the potential of world-class projects.
“In our opinion, this validates the prospectivity of our licences and we look forward to working closely with the Rio team and realising the potential of the JV properties.
“It also enables us to focus on exploration in our retained licences to rapidly deploy our planned exploration program."
Shares in Raiden soared 62% on the news, with shares reaching a high of 4.7 cents on the ASX.