TORONTO, March 27, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pure Nickel Inc. (TSX:NIC) (the "Company") is pleased to announce that its joint venture partner on the MAN Alaska project, ITOCHU Corporation of Tokyo, Japan, has confirmed funding of approximately US$3.5 million for the 2013 exploration season. Additional details will be provided following a MAN project Management Committee meeting. Mr. David McPherson, President and CEO of Pure Nickel, stated, "The MAN project continues to hold great promise, and we look forward to working with our partner, ITOCHU, to unlock the potential of the property in this our sixth season of working together." Exploration activity in 2013 will consist primarily of a drill program targeting the western part of the Alpha complex, where drilling in 2010 and 2012 intersected highly anomalous Ni-Cu-PGE mineralization. The 2013 budget calls for a 2200m drill program utilizing one helicopter supported drill rig. The program is expected to commence in the last week of May, and will be completed by mid-August. Jon Findlay, Ph.D, P.Geo. is the designated Qualified Person for this project. About the MAN Alaska property The MAN Nickel (Ni) – Copper (Cu) – Platinum Group Element (PGE) Alaska property is located at the junction of the Denali and Richardson highways in south-central Alaska, approximately 250 kilometers southeast of Fairbanks. The property consists of both state and federal claims, with a total area of approximately 40,380 hectares. Five discrete mafic-ultramafic intrusive complexes occur on the property, the largest of which, the Alpha complex, measures approximately 33 kilometers by 3 kilometers. The MAN property is being explored under a joint venture agreement with ITOCHU Corporation. ITOCHU has earned a 30% ownership interest, and has funded approximately US$21 million of exploration work since 2008. ITOCHU may earn up to a 75% interest by incurring US$40 million of exploration expenditures on the property.