Copper-zinc explorer Venturex raised a handy $2.3 million in a share placement to progress its flagship Sulphur Springs project in Western Australia.

Major backer Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) also converted $1 million of its loan to Venturex, boosting its stake in the company to 19.79 per cent.

Northern Star is a 900,000 ounce per year Australian gold producer with a market cap of about $5.2 billion.

Venturex (ASX:VXR) told investors the $2.3 million would help fund early works, complete detailed designs, and finalise project financing for Sulphur Springs.

Venturex Managing Director AJ Saverimutto said the successful capital raising in a challenging market environment reflected the project’s quality.

The share placement was completed at an issue price of 18c per share, a premium to the current share price of 17.5c.

“This capital raising puts Venturex in a very strong position moving into the New Year, with a full book of upcoming news-flow including final project approvals, project financing, development approval and the restart of exploration for 2019,” he said.

“Venturex is now poised to realise its objective of becoming a significant new mid-tier Australian base metals producer, and we are very much looking forward to what 2019 will bring for the company.”

The Venturex share price over the past 12 months.
The Venturex share price has ranged between 15c and 33c over the past 12 months.

In a November update, Venturex told investors it was talking with banks and other financiers about debt financing the $146 million development.

Venturex was also “well progressed” in discussions with potential off-take partners.