July 18, 2018
Production, Expansion, Acquisition… Building the Next Mid-Tier Copper Producer
In case you missed the recent news, we’ve announced the completion of a $96 million financing. This figure is higher than the original offering ($80 million) due to significant demand from institutional and retail investors. Completing a financing of this size at this particular time in the markets, speaks to the strength of Nevada Copper, our team and our Pumpkin Hollow project.
Copper is on its way up. A combination of near-exhausted mines, underinvestment by major producers and rising demand, thanks to EVs and other growth areas, has pulled copper out of a multi-year downturn and put the sector on an upwards track. A good thing then, that Nevada Copper plans to its Pumpkin Hollow project in production in 2019! Particularly so because, as evidenced by labour disputes and political disruption elsewhere in the World, there is an increased focus on developing sources of copper supply in secure, stable jurisdictions.
Now, before I get into any detail, let me give newcomers a bite-sized introduction to Nevada Copper’s Pumpkin Hollow - the only fully-permitted, shovel-ready copper project of large-scale in the US.
Pumpkin Hollow consists of is a very large land package just outside of Yerington, Nevada and within that land package there are two copper deposits.
The deposits are close to each other - just four kilometers apart. The first one, the one that we're actively working on right now in terms of construction, is the underground deposit (aka - the East deposit). The second deposit (aka - the West deposit) is amenable to open pit mining and we are currently progressing refining the existing feasibility study for a more capital efficient staged development approach.
Nevada Copper’s new CEO, Matt Gili, has a clear mandate from the Board of Directors: build the next mid-tier copper producer. We have the starting assets, we have the location, we have the experience and we have the right timing. So, how do we plan to get there?
The answer is near-term production, staged expansion and regional development.
Over the coming months, we will be talking a lot about the work taking place to reach the first of those milestones because we aim to commence production at our underground mine at Pumpkin Hollow in 2019. This will facilitate the construction of our large open pit mine, also at Pumpkin Hollow, in a cash-friendly, non-dilutive manner.
If we look at the next twelve to eighteen months, we have three work programs planned:
- Finish sinking the mine shafts
- Carry out underground development
- Construct a processing facility.
If you were to turn up at the site today, you would see a bee hive of activity because we've already started to mobilize contractors. You can check out our photo gallery or Twitter Feed, to see some recent images.
However, while you're going to see the most energy and the most physical transformation on the Underground Mine, a visit to the site today would also show a lot of work progressing on the open pit.
We are currently re-engineering the open pit with the aim of creating a lower CAPEX operation, which is mostly comprised of geology and engineering studies. However, we also have exploration-focused drill rigs active in the open pit area at this moment.
While open pit production is planned for after the commencement of underground operation, an important part of our strategy is to advance the pit and be ready to make a real commitment as soon as possible. The reason is that the open pit is a very exciting element of this project. It already has robust size and grades going for it, however, the potential doesn’t stop there. As our recent news releases indicate, the open pit deposit benefits from sizeable expansion potential and we are in the process of testing that potential right now.
Looking a little further into the future to a point at which both mines are in production, you are going to see us taking a very close look at the entire Yerrington region. Because copper was out of favour for a long time, what a lot of people don’t realize, or have forgotten, is that this is an area that has historically produced massive quantities of copper. There are 33 Billion lbs of copper in the region that we know of and we believe there is plenty more to discover.
This regional play works to our advantage because, being first movers, we will have the infrastructure in place to service those other deposits.
So, there you have it - production, staged-expansion and regional development - our three-step strategy towards building the next mid-tier copper producer. There’s a lot of work to be done but this is the right time for copper and this is the right project.
Be sure to connect with us via our email subscription, Twitter or LinkedIn to stay up to date with what is going to be a very busy and very exciting time for Nevada Copper and its shareholders.
Stephen Gill, Chairman of Nevada Copper