Imdex acquires Flexidrill

Global mining technology company Imdex has exercised its option to acquire New Zealand-based Flexidrill
Imdex acquires Flexidrill Imdex acquires Flexidrill Imdex acquires Flexidrill Imdex acquires Flexidrill Imdex acquires Flexidrill

Imdex stated that the deal strengthens its market position and delivers advanced new drilling technology to clients

Staff reporter

Imdex stated that the deal strengthens its market position and delivers advanced new drilling technology to clients.

The transaction to acquire Flexidrill is expected to be completed in early January with the payment of NZ$3 million (US$1.9 million) cash.

Imdex has already paid NZ$10 million (including cash and IMD shares), with NZ$27 million in future share and royalty-related payments to be based on milestones being achieved and revenue being generated from the acquired technologies.

Imdex obtained an exclusive option to acquire Flexidrill in January 2018, which enabled further development and extensive testing of its technologies CoreVIBE and MagHAMMER.

Imdex said that these technologies will offer substantial drilling productivity benefits and improved safety for its clients globally. The company also noted that there is strong industry demand for greater productivity - from drilling contractors and resource companies - and an attractive market for CoreVIBE and MagHAMMER, which complement its integrated solutions.

CoreVIBE has delivered significant improvements in penetration rates - up to 90% - in addition to realising productivity gains of more than 30%.

An Imdex client involved in Australian testing said: "I personally believe this technology to be the most significant change to drilling methods in a long time, which is a very significant achievement."

Flexidrill is a strategic acquisition for Imdex, which develops solutions designed to enable clients to drill faster and smarter, obtain accurate subsurface data and receive critical information in real-time.

Bernie Ridgeway, managing director of Imdex, said the acquisition presented a compelling investment proposition. He added: "We are confident these new technologies will be a step-change for the minerals drilling industry globally and deliver significant earnings growth for Imdex over many years.

"CoreVIBE and MagHAMMER are a strong strategic fit with our drilling optimisation solution and strengthen the company's position as a leading global mining-tech company. Imdex technologies align with growing industry demand for total ore body knowledge, real-time information, lower costs, greater productivity and safety.

"This is becoming even more important as our clients operate in increasingly challenging environments, working in remote areas and assessing resources at greater depths."

Imdex has reported strong demand from drilling contractors and resource companies for the Flexidrill technologies.

CoreVIBE uses high frequency, energy pulse-assisted drilling for wireline coring and can provide significant advancement in core drilling productivity.

Successful trials at the New Zealand test site found that CoreVIBE generated a productivity gain of 33% over conventional coring due to substantial increases in penetration rates. The results were validated by an external review undertaken by SGS, the world's leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company.

MagHAMMER uses a new hybrid drilling technique, which combines rotary diamond drilling with fluid-driven percussive drilling to achieve higher penetration rates compared to conventional coring. It improves safety and there is substantially less dust than compressed air RC drilling.

MagHAMMER is being developed at Imdex's New Zealand test site. Imdex expects client trials in the March 2020 quarter.

Imdex has developed XTRACTA in-house to complement CoreVIBE and MagHAMMER.  XTRACTA enables drill bits to be inspected or changed without retrieving the rods, significantly enhancing productivity, increasing safety and maintaining the integrity of the drill hole.