Blumont says secured $248 million in new funds from US investment firm

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore-listed Blumont Group, which has lost more than US$5 billion in market value this month, said it has secured US$200 million (S$248 million) in new funding from New York-based investment firm Platinum Partners.

Blumont, one of three Singapore-listed stocks subject to trading restrictions after a sudden plunge in their share prices recently, said late on Thursday that Platinum will subscribe to convertible bonds issued by the group.

Blumont will in turn use part of the proceeds to buy US$100 million of convertible bonds in Australian copper miner Discovery Metals. The rest of the funds will be used to finance future investments in the mineral and energy resources sector and for working capital, the Singapore-listed group said.

The funding from Platinum will ease concerns about Blumont's planned commitment in the Brisbane-based copper miner. Shares in Discovery Metals rose 13.3 per cent to A$0.085 in Sydney trading on Friday.

Blumont, LionGold Corp and Asiasons Capital saw their shares plummet in early morning trade on October 4 before trading in the stocks was suspended by the Singapore Exchange (SGX).

The SGX has since declared all three stocks "designated securities," meaning people cannot short-sell their shares and must pay for any purchases with cash up front.

Platinum Partners' PPLO fund had been due to subscribe to part of a $202 million share placement in LionGold, but that deal was called off late last week.

Platinum Partners' Value Arbitrage fund was also due to receive stock in Asiasons as part of a share placement used to fund Asiasons' purchase of a stake in oil explorer Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations. That deal is currently in limbo after SGX queried whether Asiasons had a strong enough mandate to make that share issue.

Blumont has lost around $6.26 billion in market value since Oct 1. Its shares are currently trading at $0.114, down from a high of $2.54 at the start of this month.