MANILA, Philippines’ Publicly-listed miner Atok-Big Wedge Co., Inc. said Tuesday that it has filed a complaint against Norwegian firm Intex Resources ASA for allegedly reneging on a deal covering its Mindoro nickel project.

In a statement, Atok said that Intex reneged on the sale of 100 percent of a nickel mine located on a 9,720-hectare property in the island of Mindoro.

In its complaint filed before the Regional Trial Court of Makati City, Atok said that as of October 15, 2010, Intex CEO Erlend Grimstad and Atok chairperson Roberto Ongpin had “a meeting of the minds” on the sale of the mining project.

The proposed consideration was for $10 million in cash and 300 million in new Atok shares, which was then valued at around $450 million.

However, when Atok and Intex were about to document the deal, Intex allegedly refused to sign the agreement.

Instead, Grimstad asked that Atok wait for the results of the shareholders meeting of Intex scheduled on November 5.

In good faith, Atok waited for the results of the meeting. However, up until the close of business hours on Monday November 8, Intex or Grimstad has not yet responded to Atok’s follow-ups on the results of the meeting, Atok said in its statement.

Thus, to protect its interest, Atok decided to file a civil case for specific performance against Intex before the Makati courts, Atok said.

Atok was acquired by the Ongpin group in 2009 through their holding firm, Boerstar Corp.

Atok’s other assets include a gold project in Benguet province, with a start-up production of 50 to 70 tons of ore a day with a grade of 10 grams of gold a ton.

Boerstar is controlled by Roberto V. Ongpin and Eric O. Recto, who represent the Ashmore Group in the Philippines, Atok-Big Wedge said. Boerstar has significant investments in Philweb Corp., ISM Communications Corp., Alphaland Corp. and Philex Mining Corp., the country’s largest miner.

Source: http://business.inquirer.net/money/topstories/view/20101109-302329/Atok-sues-Intex-over-Mindoro-nickel-project-sale