News - Fitzgerald Articles

Plus, New World Resources puts it head down at its Antler copper project and Perseus deal puts Tietto in the M&A spotlight

Exhibiting the same grit showed by his Test cricketing son Marnus, who bounced up from the ground without fuss up after being sconed by a 150km per hour ball from England’s Jofra Archer at Lord’s last year, Andre Labuschagne was not about to let COVID-19 get in the way of his growth ambitions for Aeris (ASX:AIS). Aeris was in the race for the sale of the Cracow gold mine in Queensland by Evolution (ASX:EVN) before the process was parked up because of the pandemic. But a determined Labuschagne convinced Evolution to re-open the sale via Zoom.

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With 2.2Moz already under its belt, Bellevue remains ‘one of Australia’s more exciting exploration stories’. Plus, the punters pour in as Hennigh likens White Rock’s Last Chance to Pogo, Rio stumps up $9m for Antipa’s Paterson play

Ahhh…to have had the clarity around the gold price that exists today back on March 23 when gold stocks were being smashed simply because all other equities were tanking in response to the economic mayhem caused by COVID-19. That moment of wistfulness is explained by using Bellevue Gold (ASX:BGL) an example. It has more than doubled from its March 23 low of 32.5c to 80c.

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The big boys of the fashionable Pilbara gold scene are flying high. But their smaller brethren, such as Calidus and Kairos, are set to play catch-up as the higher gold price is factored into their models.

Ignoring the conglomerate gold bubble of a few years ago, there has been some serious gold value creation in recent times in Western Australia’s Pilbara. De Grey (ASX:DEG) and Capricorn Metals (ASX:CMM) have led the way, with their market caps on a combined basis now knocking on the door of $1 billion.

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Plus, Rex’s strategy to diversify from tardy crow eaters pays dividends and Covid creates opportunities for counter-cyclical investors in the likes of potash explorer Trigg and lithium developer Liontown.

Miners and explorers have adapted smoothly to the world of virtual investor presentations in a COVID-19 world. Only problem with that though is there isn’t a chance to share a couple of beers afterwards with like-minded souls once the computer in the home office has gone back to screensaver mode and the cat wants a pat.

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Plus, $22m Fenix prepares to cash-in on Goldilocks iron ore environment and Sunstone to be a big winner from a re-start of mining in Ecuador

Having a 2.8 million-ounce gold resource under its belt from a mine that proved itself highlighy profitable in the tougher-than-tough $US350/oz gold price of the 1990s hasn’t meant much yet for Kingston Resources (ASX:KSN). That comes through in its modest 13.5c share price for a market cap of $24m, one of more modest valuations per resource ounce that can be found among the ASX-listed juniors. Kingston’s resource is found at the Misima project on the island of the same name some 600km east of Port Moresby in PNG’s Milne Bay province.

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And speaking of De Grey, Fraser Range pops up as a neighbour, adding another string to its bow...

Leonora gold explorer/developer Kin Mining is back on the radar after Kerry Harmanis of Jubilee Mines nickel fame took the opportunity presented by Kin’s recent capital raising to increase his stake from 15.2% to 17.1%. Harmanis is the guy who built Jubilee from a spec stock to the $3.1 billion company that Mick Davis’ Xstrata took over in 2007. To Harmanis’ credit, he has continued to be a supporter of junior explorers ever since. Kin (ASX:KIN) has been one of those.

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And the squeeze on supplies of zinc concentrate is likely to prompt smelters to offer strong support to those juniors hunting and developing the galvanising metal, such as Orion and Venturex.

It looks like it’s time to dust off the zinc equities, something IGO  (ASX:IGO) provided leadership on earlier in the week with its $27 million investment in the Century mine redeveloper/rehabilitator New Century Resources (ASX:NCZ). The investment will give IGO 18.4% of NCZ and was part of a broader $51.1m capital raising at 15c a share – a 19% premium to the 5-day average.

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And now Liontown, Chalice’s stablemate and neighbour, is looking for a Julimar of its own in ‘similar geological terrain’ while Cassini says me-too. Plus, there’s a new Canadian player in the Victorian gold game and action aplenty at Navarre.

STOP PRESS: It was mentioned here back in January that 2020 was shaping up as a big year for Strandline (ASX:STA) as it set about delivering the big-time potential of its zircon-rich Coburn project in WA’s Mid-West. Interesting to see then that Strandline went into a trade halt late yesterday pending an announcement on the “execution of material commercial agreements for the Coburn mineral sands project”.

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