Sunday 23rd October 2016

Resource Clips

Helio CEO Richard Williams on Namibia assays of 2.1 g/t gold over 50m

“The Damara Gold Project is in a northeast-southwest trend in a belt of sedimentary rocks that hosts a gold mine at the southwest end called Navachab that’s operated by AngloGold Ashanti. That’s been in production for 22 years. It has a [non-NI 43-101 compliant] resource of nearly 4.5 million ounces, and they keep finding more. So we’ve got a world-class mine operating at the southwest end.

“North-northeast of us there’s a company called Auryx Gold that’s listed on the TSX. It has a resource in the one-and-a-half-million to two-million [ounce] range. So we picked up a large land package between the two, but closer to the mine site. It covers just over 3,000 square kilometres. We see the same geology that hosts the Navachab mine.

“The news we released this morning came from what we call the Gold Kop Target. The gold-in-soil anomaly is four kilometres long in a northeast-southwest trend. It’s open to the southwest because that was basically the end of the survey grid, and within that we covered the central portion with an IP geophysical program. That identified an IP anomaly that’s about 1.2 kilometres long and is open to the north, which we drilled. The results this morning were the first drill holes in that drilling program and a great success so far.

“The big surprise was the copper-and-silver association which you don’t really see at Anglo’s Navachab mine. Obviously the silver adds a very nice credit, and if the copper is consistent in those types of grades throughout the area, that’ll add significant value to the target.

The silver adds a very nice credit, and if the copper is consistent in those types of grades throughout the area, that’ll add significant value to the target. – Richard Williams

“We have two rigs currently active there, a diamond drill rig and a reverse-circulation drill rig. The plan is to get the first 5,000 metres drilled as soon as possible, and we’ll have assays coming out right through the summer and early fall.

“The plan for the current RC drill program is to drill a series of RC fencelines every 200 metres across the IP anomaly. Once we get all the results, we’ll see how widespread the mineralization is, and that will give us an indication of the resource potential. But we’d have to probably do some infill drilling at 100-metre spacing before we’d be in a position to do anything for a resource. At the earliest, the resource would come out year-end, but we haven’t scheduled it yet. Right now we just want to see how extensive the mineralization is. Potentially the system could be quite large. We’re only 35 kilometres away from a mine that has, if you take what’s been produced and what’s been left, a resource of over 6 million ounces.

“Namibia is a very efficient operating environment. Their geological survey is probably one of the best in Africa, if not the world, from the viewpoint that they generate a lot of new information for the exploration sector. They’ve finished flying the entire country with 200-metre-spaced airborne magnetics. All that data is very reasonably priced and available to explorers. There’s only a small population, 1.7 or 1.8 million people. Mining culture has been a strong part of the fabric for the last 100 years, initially with diamonds in the southwest, and more recently uranium, copper, zinc, zinc oxide and then gold at the Navachab mine. So there’s a good understanding of mining and the benefits of mining. We’ve never had a problem. Everything we’ve applied for gets granted, and all the renewals we’ve applied for have been granted. It’s been a good experience.

“On this particular project you couldn’t hope for better infrastructure. The country’s main power grid actually runs right over the Gold Kop Target, so the powerlines are right there. It’s an hour and a half drive from the capital city of Windhoek, most of it along paved highway. As I said, we’re only 35 kilometres from an operating mine, so there’s very good infrastructure.

“Our plan going forward is to take this right through resource, pre-feasibility, feasibility and, if need be, put it into production. That’s the course we seem to be taking in Tanzania as well. We’ve already published a 940,000-ounce resource in Tanzania.”

“We’re in the process of adding to that and we’ll hopefully start a scoping study later this year on that project. I don’t think it’s an environment where you can just do the exploration and then sit there and wait for someone to buy it. We’ll move the project along to construction, and if someone buys it, great. But if not, we’ll keep going and hopefully make the most of this gold price environment.

“Our most advanced project is Tanzania. But I think the one that provides most blue-sky potential to the market right now is the Namibian project. And again, the synergy of being so close to an operating mine and good infrastructure is very attractive. So, from a market perspective, if we continue to get results similar to what we released this morning within that four-kilometre-long gold-in-soil anomaly, we could see ourselves building a resource very quickly.

“When people try to differentiate why they should invest in certain juniors, you only have to look at our shareholder base. IFC, part of the World Bank, is our biggest shareholder. They own close to 11% of the company. Macquarie Bank from Australia owns 7%. We’ve got about 50% to 55% of our shareholders on the institutional side. So I think that adds a lot of credibility to both the project and management. And I think we’ve got two good gold projects in two good jurisdictions, one with a resource and one very close to an operating mine. I think that if you’re looking for value, we represent that.”

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