Mazarin spins off Sequoia (December 31, 2003)

Mazarin (MAZ-T), the Quebec City-based industrial-minerals miner, has successfully spun off its niobium, dolomite and graphite assets into newly formed Sequoia Minerals (SEQ-T), leaving only the company’s troublesome chrysotile-asbestos assets under the Mazarin banner.

Mazarin shareholders gave virtually unanimous approval to the move at a special general meeting held on Dec. 15. Each shareholders received one Sequoia share for every Mazarin share held.

The spinoff certainly created shareholder value out of thin air: With Sequoia beginning trading on Dec. 30, Mazarin shares plummeted from 43 to around 10, while Sequoia shares oscilatted wildly between 30 and 70 before settling at around 60.

“Sequoia can be defined as a natural resource company whose mission will be to develop metals and industrial minerals in order to supply products to manufacturers throughout the world,” said Sequoia President and CEO Jacques Bonneau. “The company aims to become a leader in this sector in both Quebec and North America.”

Sequoia’s flaship asset is is underground Niobec niobium mine situated in Quebec’s Lac St. Jean region, one of only a few niobium mines worldwide.

For the fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 2003, Sequoia is likely to just about break even on revenues of almost $39 million.

Sequoia’s board of directors is composed of: Bonneau, Chairman Robert Dutil, Francois Amyot, Andre Fortier, Yves Harvey, Robert Normand, and Pierre Viger.

Sequoia’s officers include: Pierre Labbe, chief financial officer; Francois Goyette, general manager of the Dolomex division; Christian Pichette, manager of the Niobec mining and metallurgical complex; and Mario Simard, corporate controller.

Overall, Sequoia has 273 employees.

Mazarin’s new president and chairman is John LeBoutillier, and directors include Clement Godbout and Gerard Potvin.


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