Katoro Gold (AIM: KAT) has agreed the disposal of its Imweru gold project to Lake Victoria Gold Limited for a total staged consideration of $1million and a 1.5% Net Smelter Royalty on all future gold production from Imweru. LVG also holds the Imwelo gold project, which already has a mining licence and is adjacent to Imweru, and is therefore better positioned to bring Imweru into production by combining the two projects. Katoro can now focus its resources on the Blyvoor joint venture project, which is focused on the reprocessing of an existing c.1.34 million ounces of gold, and the Haneti nickel, platinum-group-elements, gold and lithium project, which the Board believes has substantial exploration upside potential.
Erris Resources (AIM: ERIS) released their final audited results for the year ended 31 December 2019, which was a challenging year for the natural resources industry. Due to this Erris proceeded cautiously by conserving resources whilst seeking new opportunities, leading to new exploration ground staked in Norway, and entering into a joint venture and option agreement for the Lock Tay Gold Project in Scotland. Encouraging results have been received from other projects with positive preliminary metallurgical test results from the Abbeytown Project, and good results from historic data review from the Galway Project, which are both in Ireland. Following their disciplined approach to expenditure, Erris is well funded for the remainder of 2020 with a €1.2million cash position as the team continues to actively evaluate new projects to fit their model, despite the impact of Covid-19 on operations.
Cora Gold’s (AIM: CORA) CEO sent his shareholder newsletter reviewing the achievements of this first quarter. The promising results of the scoping study on the flagship Sanankoro gold project confirmed its potential to be highly profitable with an annual average free cash flow of $19million and an 84% IRR, alongside the encouraging first set of results from the drilling campaign which identified a new 1,500m long gold structure. Despite the current focus being on growing Sanankoro’s resources, their wider exploration permits are also offering exciting opportunities with the drilling at Madina Foulbe Permit in Senegal, focusing on two priority targets. With the successful fundraising of £2.89million, Cora will be able to pursue their ambitious strategy to grow Sanankoro and move it into DFS to increase confidence in its existing resources. Due to the remote locations of their projects, Cora has been largely unaffected by the impact of Covid-19 as work programmes are able to continue.
Emmerson Plc’s (LSE: EML) CEO reviewed this year’s first quarter in his shareholder newsletter, outlining the outstanding progress the Khemisset Potash Project has made. The advancement of the Feasibility Study and the ESIA that started in January allows for a clear plan to further de-risk the project in the future, and the application for a mining permit is targeted for the second half of 2020. Fortunately, the current stage of the work programme can be completed remotely so Emmerson was able to restrict any unnecessary movement of their employees in light of Covid-19 and the original timelines will not be impacted. After managing budgets and cutting down expenditure where possible, Emmerson has maintained a strong cash position of over £1.6million (as of February 2020) which will allow operations to continue until late 2021, which can be extended if further cuts are made.
The first half of April typically sees Dekel Agri-Vision Plc (AIM: DKL) release a Q1 production update for its palm oil project in Cote d’Ivoire. This year the Q1 update covers the Company’s portfolio of projects, a testament to the progress Dekel is making towards building a multi-commodity agriculture business. The update covered the usual run through of the numbers at the Ayenouan Crude Palm Oil (‘CPO’) project – in Q1 12,081 tonnes of CPO were produced, a decrease on last year due to the peak harvest season starting later; 11,047 tonnes of CPO were sold at €664 per tonne, compared to €520 last year. Operations suffered minimal disruption from Covid-19 though the pandemic has led to lower demand and prices. At Tiebissou, where Dekel is developing a large-scale cashew processing operation, site work has continued however the manufacturing of milling equipment in Italy has been suspended. First production, originally targeted for Jan 2021, is now expected to be delayed. Elsewhere, discussions with the government regarding the development of a hybrid power project are ongoing, and a feasibility study into a fourth project is nearing completion.
BlueRock Diamonds Plc (AIM: BRD) announced their Q1 production update with great results despite the rainfall and the loss of eight days production at their Kareevlei diamond mine in South Africa due to the COVID-19 lockdown. Tonnes sorted were up 78% from the same period in 2019 to 74,011, carats produced were up 76% to 2,503 from the same period last year, and carats sold were up 77% to 3,267, all of which outperform last year’s results significantly. The expansion project had been making good progress after the successful capital raise in February 2020, as well as important mining being undertaken on the development of the KV1 and KV2 combined pit. Unfortunately, due to the current circumstances, future work has been postponed and Kareevlei will remain on care and maintenance until BlueRock can operate safely and on a positive monthly cash flow basis. The company will conserve as much of their cash resources as possible with a stringent strategy in place to ensure a strong return to target production levels and sales when operations can restart and the market has returned. In the meantime the company is assessing whether an arrangement can be made for its diamonds to be sold at international Tenders, which will reopen ahead of South African Tender houses.
And here are some egg-cellent Easter facts we hope will cheer up your day !