BlueRock Diamonds PLC (LON:BRD) has raised £1.9mln in an oversubscribed placing and subscription to fast track a doubling of production at its Kareevlei mine in South Africa.

The AIM-listed miner said it had issued around 2.2mln new shares at a price of 85p each, a 12.8% discount to its closing price on Monday.

READ: BlueRock says production not materially affected, following peaceful demonstration at Kareevlei

BlueRock also said the additional funds will “reduce unit costs significantly” with several modifications planned that are expected to reduce costs per carat to below US$250.

“Securing these funds from new and existing shareholders represents an endorsement of the opportunity that Kareevlei offers to build production, revenues and profitability”, said BlueRock executive chairman Mike Houston.

Thanks to this placing, BlueRock can fast-track a material increase in production volumes from the 323,000 tonnes achieved in 2019 to a run rate of +/- 750,000 tonnes per annum and a consequent expected increase in carats to over 30,000 by the end of 2020”, he added.

The shares were down 12.6% at 85.2p in late-afternoon trading on Tuesday.