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Classic closes in on gold production at its new WA flagship project



Classic closes in on gold production at its new WA flagship project

After intersecting a new high grade gold lode at its Kat Gap Project, Western Australian gold exploration and development company, Classic Minerals Limited (ASX:CLZ) has shifted its focus to preparing the project for production.

The Kat Gap Gold Project is part of the group’s Forrestania Gold Project (FGP), located about 50 kilometres to the south-east of FGP’s Lady Ada and Lady Magdalene, where the main thrust of exploration at the Forrestania belt has taken place to date.

The recent major discovery at the 100% owned Kat Gap tenements saw Classic identify very significant high-grade gold intersections, making it the main focus of Classic’s exploration, which designated Kat Gap as its “flagship project”.

The company recently completed a total of 21 holes for 1,304m at Kat Gap, in a continuation of the infill and extensional drilling program interrupted by the onset of COVID-19, reporting a new very high-grade intersection out into the granite.

The new intersection really bodes well for Classic’s future drilling programs that will be conducted out in the granite following up the historical auger geochemical anomalies.

With strong grades and near-surface mineralisation, as well as evidence of new zones outside the original drilling perimeters, there is now the option to fast track Kat Gap to early production.

Gekko Processing Plant

The company announced on Monday that it has secured a gold gravity processing plant to be used for onsite processing of gold ore, an important part of management’s plans to bring Kat Gap into production in the near term.

Classic owns a 100% interest in the gold rights on the Kat Gap tenements, which are located approximately 120 kilometres south-east of Southern Cross, WA and has an existing 93,000 ounce JORC Resource with strong exploration upside and scope for high-grade open pit mining.

The equipment secured is a Gekko gold gravity processing plant. Gekko are world leaders in the manufacture of gold processing plant and machinery with their plants boasting small footprints and low environmental impact.

An added attraction to Classic is that the Australian-made Gekko plant is modular and mounted on containerised elements providing for scalability and ease of modification.

The plant has a 30 tonne per hour capacity and is scalable to a Gekko Python plant with a processing capacity of 250 tonnes per hour.

Also, the mobility associated with the modular construction enables Classic to locate the plant adjacent to the ore body which further minimises cartage and processing costs.

Production soon to commence

Classic’s purchase of the two-stage gravity concentration plant from Gekko will be provided fully refurbished to new condition. The two-part plant will form the basis of the processing facility to be set up and operated by Classic at its Kat Gap gold deposit.

Classic is now on track to set-up, commission and test the Gekko plant and commence processing of the gold-rich ore at Kat Gap.

The Gekko plant is ideally suited to processing Kat Gap ore which has a unique high gravity gold concentration.

The company will have the capability and capacity to commence production as soon as the mining approvals (MLA 74/249) have been granted.

In order to provide an immediate revenue stream, Classic has also commenced negotiations to toll treat any initial parcels of ore from Kat Gap, while the full-scale plant is configured to suit Kat Gap ore.

Indeed, it could be argued that the mix of promising exploration results, which have also indicated the prospect of significantly greater resource expansion than originally anticipated, combined with management’s decision to facilitate early-stage processing, positions the group for a market capitalisation based rerating.

Classic’s market capitalisation of approximately $20 million doesn’t capture the value of gold identified in ground, let alone the group’s exploration potential.

As a guide, if Classic were able to extract 50,000 ounces of Kat Gap’s 90,000 ounce resource, applying the current gold price (approximately A$2500 per ounce) and average production costs (approximately A$1300 per ounce) the company could net A$60 million.

Now that management is a master of its own destiny in terms of transitioning from explorer to producer, one would expect the company to attract a significantly higher market capitalisation.

This would translate into a considerable share price increase which is likely to see the company at least test its 12 month high, implying share price upside of 100% relative to Friday’s closing price.

All of Classic’s drill programs undertaken at FGP have yielded high grade gold hits and management is confident that this is a major gold camp containing significant undiscovered resources and it is on track to discover and delineate these ore bodies.

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Los Cerros jumps 120% on high grade Colombian gold intercept



Los Cerros jumps 120% on high grade Colombian gold intercept

The richly gold-copper endowed Mid-Cauca porphyry belt in Colombia hosts numerous multi-million-ounce gold discoveries and attracted the world’s three largest gold producers — Newmont Gold Corp., Barrick Gold Corp., and AngloGold Ashanti.

Also drawn to the richly gold-copper endowed region is ASX-listed junior Los Cerros (ASX: LCL) which has a dominant position within the belt’s Andes and Quinchia regions.

Los Cerros has just reported that it had intercepted thick gold mineralisation from surface at the Tesorito target at its Quinchia Project.

The stock closed up a handy 127% yesterday after the announcement was released to the ASX.

That move lifted the company’s market capitalisation to $60 million — still only a fraction of its neighbouring mining majors.

Drill hole TS-DH08, the first hole of the company’s current expanded drilling program at Tesorito, returned an exceptionally wide gold intercept and hinted that there is further potential at depth.

These first assay results confirmed the encouraging results of previous drill holes TS-DH02 and TS-DH07 that are located either side of the recently completed hole. This has further demonstrated both the deeper gold-copper porphyry and the near surface high grade epithermal gold potential.

Gold mineralisation exceeding 1g/t Au has now been demonstrated by three separate diamond holes to exceed 230m downhole thickness, over an area of 300m x 250m, and remaining open in all directions

The raw data from these latest holes is extremely impressive with TS-DH08 returning 230 metres at 1.0 g/t gold, including some prominent intersections of 18 metres at 2.0 g/t gold from surface and 116 metres at 1.4 g/t gold from 114 metres to 230 metres.

Importantly, these results build on 384 metres at just over 1 g/t gold from 16 metres and 253 metres at a similar grade from 2.9 metres.

In the heart of the multi Moz Mid-Cauca Gold Belt

Los Cerros’ Quinchia Project hosts the Miraflores Gold Deposit with a Resource of 877,000 gold ounces at 2.8 g/t gold and Reserve of 457,000 ounces at 3.3 g/t gold.

Within three kilometres of Miraflores is the Tesorito near surface porphyry where the company is currently drilling.

Also in close proximity, is the Chuscal target where a maiden drilling program was completed in January 2020 and drilling is set to recommence in October 2020.

The multi-million ounce Mid-Cauca Gold Belt is home to large producing mines, recent high profile discoveries and the subject of extensive investment by mining majors, including AngloGold Ashanti, a shareholder in Los Cerros.

AngloGold is the third largest gold mining company in the world based on production.

This is an outstanding endorsement of the company’s prospects given Anglo’s comprehensive understanding of the region.

AngloGold’s 30 million ounce Nuevo Chaquiro project (also known as Quebradona) lies 50 kilometres north of Los Cerros’ territory.

The gold component of the AngloGold’s reserve at the Nuevo Chaquiro copper-gold project was based on a gold grade of 0.71 g/t, highlighting the potential commercial viability of the grades being delineated by Los Cerros.

Even at 0.71 g/t gold, the contained gold in Nuevo Chaquiro is 2.5 million ounces, highlighting the benefits of developing the large-scale projects that are characteristic of the region.

At Los Cerros’ Tesorito, there is already emerging evidence of scale and continuity of both near surface epithermal and deeper high grade porphyry style mineralisation.

Down hole thicknesses exceeding 230 metres of gold mineralisation of 1 g/t or above, essentially from surface, have now been identified in three drill holes over an area of 300 metres x 250 metres. This mineralisation remains open to the north-northeast and east direction as well as showing additional promise to host copper with gold in depth extensions.

Current hole TS-DH09 is exploring an untested northern anomaly, currently at a depth of 329 metres, the outcome of which is much anticipated.

Los Cerros’ Senior Geologists, both of whom have worked at the multi-million ounce Nuevo Chaquiro deposit, 51 kilometres to our north, and La Colosa deposit, 104 kilometres south-east, have noted textural and mineralogical similarities to that deposit, especially its porphyry core which also carries banded veins, UST textures and primary bornite.

Commenting on these promising results, Los Cerros’ managing director Jason Stirbinskis said, “This is a highly encouraging start to the drill campaign as not only has it provided a sense of near-surface porphyry mineralised volume given similar results of nearby holes, it has hinted that there is further potential at depth.

‘’Primary bornite is a copper rich mineral species, its presence, based on visual logs, correlates to elevated copper in assays and has raised the possibility of more copper occurrences as we chase depth extensions in subsequent drilling.

‘’In this regard it is interesting to note that TS-DH02 recorded an intersection near end of hole, of 35 metres grading 0.2% copper from 365 metres downhole including 0.7 metres at 2.6% copper from 391 metres downhole depth, some 90 metres vertically below the TS-DH08 hole depth.

‘’The 18 metre intersection grading 2.0 g/t gold from surface including 6 metres at 4.1g/t gold also provides encouragement to further pursue the east-west trending epithermal veins for high grade gold resources to supplement existing resources and reserves at the nearby Miraflores deposit.

Stribinskis has referred to the possibility of adding high-grade gold resources to supplement the existing resource at Miraflores.

This could become an integral part of the company’s strategy, particularly with the gold price hovering in the vicinity of US$2,000 per ounce.

Other options were pursued ahead of Miraflores when the gold price was approximately US$1,300 per ounce, but another $700 per ounce could make the mine highly economical, even more so if the resource was expanded and complemented by the addition of higher grade ore.

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Q&A With StockPal – Alice Queen (ASX:AQX)



Q&A with StockPal - Andy Buxton, Managing Director of Alice Queen (ASX:AQX)

Watch Andy Buxton, Managing Director of Alice Queen (ASX:AQX) and Jared Sim, Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder of StockPal in this engaging Q&A with the following questions:

0:00 – StockPal Introductions
0:12 – What is your business about?
0:42 – How did your company cope with the COVID-19 pandemic?
1:55 – What projects are you currently working on?
3:42 – When do you see the company moving into the discovery phase and development?
5:08 – What is your firm’s competitive advantage?
6:44 – How are you currently engaging with your investors?

Visit Alice Queen’s website to learn more about their story:

Email if you are or represent a listed-company and is keen to be in our interviews.


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Manuka Resources (ASX:MKR) – Dennis Karp



The CEO Mindset - Dennis Karp is the Executive Chairman and CEO of Manuka Resources (ASX:MKR)

Dennis Karp is the Executive Chairman and CEO of Manuka Resources (ASX:MKR), a focused Gold & Silver producer, operating in the highly prospective Cobar Basin. Manuka Resources purchased the Wonawinta project in late 2016 and acquired Mt Boppy Resources P/L the holder of the high grade historic Mt Boppy gold project, in mid 2019. The company commenced processing the remaining Mt Boppy gold ore in April 2020, becoming Australia’s newest precious metals producer.

What’s your journey in becoming a Chief Executive Officer?
The Manuka Resources story really starts back in late 2015. We had a consortium of investors headed by my firm ResCap Investments that identified the opportunity with the Wonawinta silver project in New South Wales, completed due diligence and ultimately acquired the asset.

I wasn’t the first choice as CEO; there was someone else before me, Nick Lindsay. Nick is a geologist and a silver specialist and he was the best person for the job in the first instance. But it soon became apparent that the journey would be a lot longer than initially thought and there would be a lot more fundraising involved. There was also a legacy environmental issue with Wonawinta, which was dealt with.

I stepped in as Executive Chairman/CEO in late 2017. Nick remains a Non-Executive Director and has contributed significantly to the company’s success to date.

I started out as a banker with HSBC. I was head of trading there from 1982 to 1996. In 1997 I became a principal of Tennant Metals, which was one of Australia’s oldest and largest metals trading businesses. We sold Tennant to South Africa’s Metalcorp in 2011. It was through Tennant that I first had exposure to investing in mining companies and then in December 2014, we set up ResCap with the mandate to identify unique opportunities in the mining space.

Manuka – or more specifically, the Wonawinta project – ticked that box. It had a relatively new plant that had only had two years of production through it; it had scale; and to top it off there was a 52,000 ounce silver resource already sitting there.

Tell us a bit about your business and how you are commercializing?
Manuka is a precious metals mining and exploration company.

To complement Wonawinta and strengthen the overall business, Manuka acquired the Mt Boppy gold project, which is also located in NSW’s Cobar Basin, in June 2019.

Like Wonawinta, Mt Boppy had an existing resource base and offered the prospect of near-term production. In April this year the company poured first gold after treating stockpiled Mt Boppy ore through the Wonawinta plant.

Since then, more gold has been produced from stockpiles and freshly mined ore at Mt Boppy and exploration has begun with a view to growing the existing resources. The company anticipates producing 22,000-24,000 ounces of gold in the first 12 months of operation.

Revenue from gold sales in the first 12 months is expected to be used to extinguish in its entirety the debt taken on to fund a refurbishment and upgrade of the Wonawinta plant.

In June this year, Manuka completed a $7 million initial public offering, paving the way for its listing on the Australian Securities Exchange in July.

Funds from the IPO have been earmarked for exploration programs at Mt Boppy and Wonawinta, where previous drilling extends to a depth of no more than 100m, and on the company’s surrounding tenements.

Following completion of the first phase of gold production treating ore from Mt Boppy, Manuka intends to commence silver production at Wonawinta.

How are you managing with the current COVID-19 pandemic on both business and personal front?
From the very start of the pandemic, mining was deemed an essential industry so we’ve been able to travel back and forth to site as required. Our entire workforce is drive in-drive out so there hasn’t been any issues with them coming in from interstate and needing to quarantine or anything like that.

Obviously we have controls on site and we’ve been maintaining those religiously from day one. We’re doing all the things that mining companies around the country have had to do to ensure they can stay in operation.

We’ve been fortunate that the town of Cobar has been COVID-free.

What’s the most exciting thing about running your business?
The mining game is essentially about containing costs and maximising revenue. You also have safety and sustainability aspects to consider in the pursuit of those goals. Then there are two relative unknowns that you are dealing with: the commodity cycle and exploration. I think the most exciting thing for me is the rewards that can come when you manage to get it right on all fronts, you have the exploration success and you time the commodity cycle right.

On a more personal level, there is an element of feeling as though I am fulfilling my family destiny in running a mining company as my grandfather was credited as the original founder of the Witwatersrand extension, the famous goldfield in South Africa.

How do you measure success?
For a listed company, share price appreciation is the most obvious measure of success. We have done well on that front since joining the ASX, with our share price tripling in that short time.

Success, in my mind, is a holistic concept that includes establishing and achieving your own goals. It needs to occur in a framework of satisfaction and happiness. I look at success in leadership as contributing to the benefit of others. One of the things I am proudest of with Manuka is that everyone on site says it is the best mining camp they’ve ever stayed in. Being part of a fledgling company, they have all probably had to contribute above and beyond, but I’d like to think we have looked after them as well and shown how valued they are.

What do you think is the most important quality of being a Chief Executive Officer of a listed company?
As the CEO of a listed company, you carry a large responsibility to a large number of stakeholders, big and small. I think the most important quality is to always act with integrity and a sense of purpose. You need to have a clear vision for the future of the company and you have to make sure that marries up with the expectations of your stakeholders.

What is your favourite book?
Start-up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle by Dan Senor and Saul Singer. As the title suggest, the book looks at why Israel has been incredibly successful with start-up businesses over recent years. It highlights the role compulsory national service has had to play and demonstrates the importance culture plays in the success of entrepreneurs. Israel has a culture that doesn’t punish failure, that highlights the importance of learning from failure.

What message do you want to send to our readership in Asia?
We are in a deep mineral field in Cobar where the known deposits extend as far as 2km below surface and the mineralisation tends to get stronger at depth. We have only scratched the surface at both Mt Boppy and Wonawinta. Very little drilling has been done at Mt Boppy beyond 100m and very little drilling has been done at Wonawinta beyond 60m. So the potential upside from exploration is very significant.

We also offer investors exposure to the two primary precious metals and as central governments around the world increase money supply, the outlook for both as stores of value looks overwhelmingly positive.

How can people connect with you?
Company Website:

Dennis Karp (pictured on the left) in full protective gear.

Want to be on the list next time this company raises capital? Open an account with Fresh Equities and start exploring capital raises –

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