Pinetree on spending spree

Vancouver – After recently closing a $72-million financing, junior investment and merchant banking firm Pinetree Capital (PNP-T, PNPFF-O) has loaded up on shares of several junior mining companies focusing on the McFaulds Lake area-play in Northern Ontario’s James Bay Lowlands.

In late-October Pinetree sold 13.75-million units at $5.25 apiece through the brokered deal with each unit consisting of a share and a half-warrant. Warrants are exercisable at $6.50 per share for five years.

With the cash in its coffers Pinetree added to its investment portfolio picking up shares in four junior explorers active in the McFaulds Lake camp.

The Toronto-based merchant bank recently bought shares in Noront Resources (NOT-V, NOSOF-O), MacDonald Mines Exploration (BMK-V, MCDMF-O), Temex Resources (TME-V, TMXRF-O) and Probe Mines (PRB-V, PROBF-O).

In its purchase of 720,000 Noront shares, Pinetree boosted it position in the company to just over 8.6 million shares to hold about 7.6% interest. Noront remains a market darling follow its discovery of nickel, copper and platinum group metals on its Double Eagle property. The drill hits have propelled Noront shares from the 40 level to a high of $7.05 over the past couple months recently trading around the $5.25 range.

Pinetree also picked up 3.075 million units of MacDonald Mines for 40 apiece. Units are made of a share plus a half-warrant with full warrants exercisable at 50 for two years. If all its warrants were exercised, Pinetree would hold 11.15 million MacDonald Mines shares for about 8% of the company.

As part of the same MacDonald Mines financing, US Gold (UXG-T, UXG-X CEO and chairman Robert McEwen bought 6-million flow-through units at 40 apiece to hold 8.8% of the company or about 14.4% upon exercise of all warrants.

Additionally, Pinetree recently acquired 3-million units of Temex and 2-million units of Probe Mines to hold significant positions in both the juniors.

Pinetree reports investments primarily in the resource sector mostly into precious metal, uranium, base metal, and oil and gas companies. As of mid-2007 the finance house reported 509 investments with an estimated fair value of about $809 million.

The stock posts a recent trading level of about $6.75 per share and a 52-week price range of $3.50-$16.15.


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