Northern Star Resources and Dacian Gold are prime examples of the rewards to be had from showering some love and attention on mature gold projects.
Give the geologists the time and funds to go and chase their best ideas and it is a fair bet that mines, and previously mined deposits, that were considered clapped out can quickly start to shine again.
That is particularly so against a gold market backdrop which continues to provide strong support for rejuvenating exploration efforts through the $A700 an ounce margins to be had on the industry’s average cost of production.
Not all companies have headed down the rejuvenation path. And in the case of today’s interest, Gateway Mining (GML), it actually turned its back on its West Australian gold roots last year when it signed up to be a backdoor listing vehicle for some coking coal assets in Queensland’s Bowen Basin.
But that deal fell over late last year, prompting Gateway to act on Plan B – a return to its WA gold roots, but with a difference.
The difference has shown up in Gateway overhauling its board and management after a friendly merger with the unlisted Omni Projects, and after raising raise some cash to fund a dive back into its cornerstone Gidgee gold project, about 70km north of Sandstone (and not to be confused with Horizon Gold’s (HRN) abutting Gidgee/Gum Creek gold project).
The Omni acquisition increased Gateway’s Gidgee footprint as well as delivering gold and base metals project elsewhere in WA. It also served up the services of well-regarded geologist Peter Langworthy, initially as a non-executive, but soon as managing director.
Langworthy is a 32-year veteran of the WA exploration and mining scene. He started out way back learning the ropes with WMC and was executive general manager for exploration and geology at Jubilee Mines when the nickel producer got taken over by Xstrata for $3.2 billion in 2008.
Langworthy hit the Eastern states earlier in the week as part of the Resources Rising Stars investor luncheon series and as might have been expected from someone with his experience and insights, his presentations had a comfortable canniness to them.
“It is not a complicated or unusual story,’’ Langworthy said.
“It is about taking a WA gold asset that has seen previous mining, having a look at it in terms of its overall potential using the large-scale data base and then coming up with a very strong geologically driven concept, one we now believe has the potential to deliver a multi-million-ounce mineralised system.”
Gateway’s project area has a history of gold production from a handful of shallow open cuts back in the 1980s and 1990s.
Plus, New Century Resources winning support with zinc production on track for August. Read more +