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WA juniors showing their wares in London

Several ASX-listed WA minerals companies are heading to London with investment bank RFC later this month, chasing support from the northern hemisphere investment community.

Victorian gold explorer Ballarat Goldfields and Sydney’s Bolnisi Gold are also going along, and with the WA companies, will present at a joint conference organised by RFC and UK investment bank and institutional broker Numis Securities.

While markets have been difficult in many regions, RFC Perth office head Stephen Allen says it is worth their while for emerging resource companies to visit with institutional investors in London.

"The capital pools are deeper there," he said.

"With the right story, a company can raise money – in Australia and in London," he said.

However, Mr Allen warns that London is not a pot of gold.

And any company thinking of listing on the London Stock Exchange’s junior board, the Alternative Investment Market, should be aware that it needs a good-value story, he said.

A company also needs to have a good reason to be listing there, and to maintain a profile there, he said.

"AIM is only right for certain companies," Mr Allen said.

Many UK funds can only invest in UK-listed companies, so some of the attraction of an AIM listing is to be more attractive to the general pool.

However, UK institutions turn sceptical of any foreign company raising support and then just heading off home.

International operations, or having an offshore project, somewhere with a historical profile for Europeans, is an attraction for UK institutional investors.

One of the companies going on tour with RFC this month is Consolidated Minerals, which completed an AIM compliance listing earlier this year, after enlisting RFC as the company’s nominated advisor.

Before AIM approved any nominated advisors outside of the UK last year – RFC was one of the first – companies had been paying up to A$1 million, plus capital raising commissions, to complete an AIM listing.

However, Consolidated was able to do this for around A$450,000, Mr Allen said. Consolidated does not own or operate any overseas projects.

Rather it has two flagship Pilbara projects, one manganese and the other chromite, and exports high-grade mang-anese to Eastern Europe and Asia.

Consolidated managing director Michael Kiernan said the company listed on AIM to broaden its share-holder base, raise its profile as an international exporter, and boost its prospects for future fundraising to fund growth through acquisition.

Fifteen Australian companies have listed on AIM, sixty percent of these in the past two years.

Thirteen Australian companies remain on the AIM board, seven of these from WA.

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