Feb 4 Harry Winston Diamond Corp said on
Monday that a lawsuit filed by a minority partner in the Ekati
diamond mine in Canada's Northwest Territories has been dropped,
clearing the way for Harry Winston to take over the mine from
Australia's BHP Billiton Ltd.
Harry Winston's $500 million deal to take control of Ekati
from partner BHP, announced in November, hit a snag last month
when another partner, C. Fipke Holdings Ltd, which has a right
of first refusal, filed a claim alleging that BHP had failed to
comply with the joint venture agreement.
Fipke has formally discontinued the action and all of the
partners in Ekati have now waived their rights of first refusal
with respect to the agreement, Harry Winston said.
The deal, which must still meet regulatory approvals,
includes the current operating mine along with a "buffer zone"
with development potential. The mine is located just south of
the Arctic Circle.
Harry Winston said last month it will sell its jewelry arm
to Switzerland's Swatch in a $1 billion deal that
leaves the Canadian company free to concentrate on its mining
Shares of Harry Winston were up 0.82 percent at C$14.82 on
Monday morning on the Toronto Stock Exchange.