St Charles Resources said it reached a final agreement to acquire Bulgaria-based private mining business Eastern Resources
As part of the transaction, Eastern Resources owners will receive 952,380 shares into the combined company for each Eastern Resources share they hold, St Charles said in a press release on Wednesday.
In total, Eastern Resources shareholders will obtain 33.3 million shares in the newly formed entity, representing a stake of 54.92%.
The purchase price payable by St Charles will be deemed to equal about 95,238 Canadian dollars per Eastern Resources share, corresponding to an aggregate price of 3.33 million Canadian dollars.
The Canadian company will carry out the transaction through its UK unit, Eastern Resources (UK) Ltd.
Eastern Resources has a capital of 35 shares. The firm has four owners – Seefin Capital OOD, Balkan Mineral & Discovery EOOD, GEOPS-Bolkan Drilling Services EOOD and Dundee Resources Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Dundee Corporation.
Eastern Resources owns the Kutel gold project in the Eastern Rhodope mountains and the Kostilkovo gold project, which is close to the border with Greece, in Bulgaria’s Haskovo Region.
Following the transaction, the resulting company will be mainly focused on the exploration of the two gold projects and acquisition of additional properties in line with exploration strategy.
St Charles Resources is a special purpose vehicle, or capital pool company, which has no commercial operations and no assets other than cash. Its aim is to identify and evaluate businesses or assets for acquisition.
The final agreement came after the parties first signed a letter of intent in September.
(1 Canadian dollar = $0.7531/0.6862 euro), SEE News reports.
Bulgaria, Dundee Precious Metals updates life of mine plan
Dundee Precious Metals Inc. has released an updated mineral resource and mineral reserve estimate and said it sees additional production over the life of its Ada Tepe gold mine in Bulgaria.
Highlights of the new life of mine plan include an estimated increase in recoverable gold to concentrate of approximately 66,000 ounces and higher average gold grade of 5.2 g/t, compared to 4.6 g/t in the precious life of mine plan.
The new estimate forsees an average of approximately 16,500 ounces of additional gold production per year for 2023 through 2026.
The updated plan is expected to improve Dundee Precious’s previously issued three-year outlook for gold production, which will be updated with the release of the company’s fourth quarter and year-end 2022 financials on February 16, 2023.
On January 12, 2023, Dundee Precious shares closed at $7.36 and currently trade in a 52-week range of $8.41 and $5.40.
Dundee is a Canadian international mining company with operations and projects located in Bulgaria, Namibia, Ecuador and Serbian. It also has exploration projects in Armenia, Bulgaria and Serbia. Its asset portfolio includes a 10.3% stake in Sabina Gold & Silver Corp. which is developing the 100%-owned Back River gold project in Nunavut.
Dundee’s operating assets include the Chelopech and Ada Tepe mines in Bulgaria and Tsumeb specialty smelter in Namibia, as well as the development stage Timok gold project in Serbia plus the Loma Largo project in Ecuador.
Dundee has previously said it achieved its production targets last year by producing 273,100 ounces of gold and 30.8 million pounds of copper from Ada Tepe and Chelopech. Ada Tepe achieved its highest quarterly production of 2022 in the fourth quarter, producing approximately 28,100 ounces of gold. It produced 94,000 ounces for the year, which was at the higher end of the company’s production guidance.
The updated proven and probable mineral reserve at Ada Tepe consists of 415,000 contained gold ounces and 250,000 contained silver ounces.
“Since commissioning in 2019, Ada Tepe has continued to outperform expectations,’’ said Dundee Precious President and CEO David Rae. “We are confident that Ada Tepe will continue to deliver strong results, supported by this improved life of mine plan.’’
In the fourth quarter Chelopech produced approximately 45,300 ounces of gold and 7.4 million pounds of copper. That brought production for the year to 179,100 ounces of gold and 30.8 million pounds of copper.
The Tsumeb smelter processed approximately174,000 tonnes of complex concentrate, which was below the annual guidance of 185,000 to 200,000 tonnes.
Meanwhile, Dundee has said it is finalizing the revised feasibility study for its Loma Largo project in Ecuador, which is on track for production in the first quarter of 2022, Resource World reports.
Dundee Precious Metals saw its third consecutive year of record annual gold production in 2021
TSX-listed Dundee Precious Metals saw its third consecutive year of record annual gold production in 2021. Its two gold mines in Bulgaria performed better-than-expected in Q4, while processing at the Namibian Tsumeb smelter fell behind guidance.
“Our mining operations continued to deliver impressive performance in the fourth quarter, driven by a new record for quarterly gold production at Ada Tepe, combined with strong results from Chelopech,” Dundee’s president and CEO David Rae said on January 10.
The Canada-based miner’s consolidated gold production was 310,000oz for 2021, which is at the higher end of the 271,000-317,000oz guidance. This came after production of 82,800oz in Q4.
Canaccord Genuity Capital Markets analyst Dalton Baretto said the consolidated Q4 production beat Canaccord’s forecast of 73,000oz by 13%.
Baretto said the result was due to higher throughput, grades and recoveries at the central-western Bulgarian Chelopech underground gold-copper mine.
Chelopech’s Q4 gold production was 49,000oz, which took the 2021 total for the operation to 177,000oz. This beat the 156,000-176,000oz guidance, but was down from the 179,000oz achieved in 2020.
Chelopech’s 2021 copper production was in line with guidance at 34,700 million pounds after production of 9.2Mlbs in Q4.
Dundee reported that the Southern Bulgarian Ada Tepe mine – which began commercial production in June 2019 – produced 133,000oz of gold in 2021, which compares with guidance of 115,000-141,000oz. Production was 119,000oz in 2020.
The 2021 total came after Ade Tepe produced 33,800oz in Q4, which was “slightly above plan due to higher grades”, Dundee said.
Ade Tepe’s Q4 gold production was in line with Baretto’s forecast.
“The Tsumeb smelter processed approximately 52,000 tonnes of complex concentrate during the fourth quarter, reflecting an 8-day maintenance shutdown to repair a water leak in the offgas system,” Dundee said.
The miner noted that this resulted in the smelter processing about 189,700 tonnes of complex concentrate in 2021, which was below revised guidance of 195,000-200,000t.
Meanwhile, Dundee announced in November that it would supplement its base US$0.03/share quarterly dividend with the repurchase of 152,000 shares at C$7.51/share.
In aggregate, Dundee repurchased 1,723,800 common shares in 2021 at an average price of C$7.64/share, for a total value of about C$13.2 million, the company said.
Baretto said the total value implies an incremental C$0.07/share, and together with the base dividend implies a total trailing 12-month yield of 2.9% at the current C$7.33 share price.
Velocity exercises option to acquire 70% stake in Makedontsi gold project in Bulgaria
Canadian gold exploration company Velocity Minerals said that it has delivered a notice of option exercise to Bulgarian metal ore mining company Gorubso-Kardzhali for the Nadezhda property which includes the Makedontsi gold project.
“Following delivery of the exercise notice, Velocity is deemed to have earned a 70% interest in the property and to be in joint venture with Gorubso for the further development of the property,” the gold exploration company said in a statement on Tuesday.
To fulfill the terms of the option agreement with Gorubso, Velocity was required to deliver an environment impact assessment prepared in accordance with the Bulgarian Environmental Protection Act. Velocity will sole-fund 2,000 m of future drilling and deliver a mineral resource estimate, the company added.
Mineralisation at Makedontsi is outcropping locally but elsewhere the prospective sediments are covered by a thin veneer of post-mineral limestone estimated to range from 10 to 30 m thickness, Velocity said.
“Exploration at Makedontsi to date, including eight diamond holes and 14 reverse circulation holes, was completed to test the grade and extents of historical drilling. Drilling intersected mineralisation, starting from surface, and the mineralisation remains open for expansion,” the company also said.
Future drilling will continue to test for extensions of mineralisation, Velocity added.
Dundee reports record gold production in second quarter in Bulgaria
Dundee Precious Metals (TSX: DPM) announced strong preliminary production results from both of its mines and the smelter, with consolidated gold production of 85,100 ounces for the three months ended June 30, 2021, which is 5% more than 81,400 ounces produced a year before.
According to a statement, the company’s flagship Chelopech mine in Bulgaria produced 52,600 ounces of gold and 10.0 million pounds of copper during the second quarter. Gold production, which increased significantly compared with the first quarter, was higher than expected as a result of mining higher grade zones and improved recoveries, the company said.
Dundee added that the Ada Tepe mine in Bulgaria continued to deliver strong gold production, producing 32,500 gold ounces in the second quarter, which was in line with the mine plan.
The Tsumeb smelter in Namibia delivered solid performance during the second quarter, the company noted, processing 59,600 tonnes of complex concentrate, an increase compared with the first quarter following the completion of the planned Ausmelt furnace maintenance in March.
With strong performance in the first half of the year, the company said it is on track to meet its previously issued guidance for 2021 at each of its operations.
“We achieved a new record for gold production in the second quarter as a result of strong performance from our mining operations,” said president and CEO David Rae. “Our strong gold production, combined with solid smelter performance in Q2, positions us well to achieve our 2021 guidance at each of our operations”.
Additionally, the company said that, as previously announced in May 2021, and in line with its disciplined capital allocation framework, DPM will pay a quarterly dividend of US$0.03 per share on July 15, 2021 to shareholders of record as at 5:00 p.m. Toronto local time on June 30, 2021.
Dundee Precious Metals is a Canadian-based international gold mining company with operations and projects located in Bulgaria, Namibia and Serbia.
Raiden Resources extends licence at Kalabak Bulgaria
Kalbak mining project is located within ten kilometres of Canadian mining company, Dundee Precious Metal’s, Ada Tepe Mine in south-east Bulgaria.
Raiden Resources’ (RDN) licence for its Bulgarian Kalabak project has been extended for a two-year exclusive term. The licence has been extended by the Ministry of Energy and gives Raiden the ability to earn into a 75 per cent position at the project level. Managing Director of Raiden Dusko Ljubojevic said that the company plans to start fieldwork at the project with the extension.
“Kalabak is a large permit, 195 square kilometres, and is located within one of the
most exciting epithermal gold districts in Eastern Europe,” he commented.
To get the fieldwork underway, Raiden is legally required to complete the statutory administrative action which it hopes to have finished in the following weeks. Once the paperwork is complete, the company plans to restart targeting across the licence.
Exploration campaigns in 2019 and 2020 defined several copper-gold prospects, including porphyry prospects and epithermal gold prospects.
However, only one prospect, titled Sbor, has been drill tested to date.
Raiden said drilling on the Sbor prospect defined a large zone of alteration, which the company hopes is indicative of a porphyry system.
Consequently, the company plans to determine the next steps in targeting copper mineralisation on the Sbor copper-gold porphyry prospects and also, the Belopoltsi epithermal prospect.
Further, work is planned to follow up on prospects that haven’t been advanced since initial exploration campaigns.
This will include evaluating the Chal gold prospect, which is a geochemical prospect and was defined by the company in previous sampling campaigns and a permit-wide reconnaissance program to define new targets.
Extension of Lucky Invest’ lead-zinc deposit concession
The concession agreement for the Govedarnika deposit, located in the Plovdiv region, was signed in 2000. Lucky Invest is a unit of local mining company KCM 2000.
Bulgaria’s government said that it will extend by ten years its concession agreement with Lucky Invest for the lead-zinc ore deposit Govedarnika.
The extension was requested by the company in view of the significant resources remaining at the deposit, the government said in a statement following its weekly meeting.
Dundee Precious Metals’ technical report on its Bulgarian mine
In order to support the updated Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve Estimate and improved life of mine plan for Ada Tepe as previously disclosed in the Company’s news release dated October 16, 2020, Dundee Precious Metals Inc. announced that the Company has filed a technical report for its Ada Tepe gold mine in Bulgaria.
The technical report has been prepared pursuant to the Canadian Securities Administrator’s National Instrument 43-101. The technical report and the October 16, 2020 news release are both available for review on SEDAR and on the Company’s website.
Dundee Precious Metals enters investment agreement with Velocity Minerals Bulgaria
Velocity Minerals Ltd. is a gold exploration and development company focused on southeastern Bulgaria. Velocity has a 70% interest in the Tintyava prospecting licence, which includes the Rozino gold project, located approximately 40 kilometres by road from DPM’s Ada Tepe mine.
Dundee Precious Metals Inc. announced that it has entered into an investment agreement with Velocity to invest up to C$7 million in Velocity on a private placement basis. DPM is expected to purchase up to 14 million common shares of Velocity at a price of C$0.50 per share. Upon closing the transaction, DPM is expected to own approximately 9.99% of Velocity’s issued and outstanding common shares on a non-diluted basis.
Velocity’s 70% interest in Rozino is held through a joint venture arrangement with a local third party. On October 15, 2020, Velocity filed a pre-feasibility technical report on Rozino which contained a probable mineral reserve estimate at a 0.5 g/t gold cut-off grade of 11.8 Mt at 1.22 g/t gold for 465,000 ounces.1 Velocity also has option agreements to earn a 70% interest in the Obichnik and Makedontsi gold projects; and an option agreement to earn a 100% interest in the Iglika project.
“We are pleased to be investing in further gold exploration in southeastern Bulgaria through our equity financing in Velocity,” said David Rae, President and CEO of Dundee Precious Metals. “Given our strong presence and capabilities in the region, we believe that we are uniquely positioned to support Velocity as a strategic shareholder.”
The Agreement contains certain rights and restrictions customary for these types of transactions. Subject to approval of the TSX Venture Exchange and other closing conditions, the transaction is expected to close on or about November 24, 2020. All securities issued in connection with the transaction will be subject to a hold period of four months and one day in Canada.
Dundee Precious Metals’ Ada Tepe mine in Bulgaria – updated reserves and optimized mining plan
“We are very pleased with the updated mineral reserves and the optimized mine plan for Ada Tepe gold mine in Bulgaria,” said David Rae, President and CEO of Dundee Precious Metals. “We are proud of our operating team at Ada Tepe, which has continued to exceed our expectations since the start of operations last year. The optimized mine plan further supports Ada Tepe’s potential to drive strong operating results within our portfolio.”
Total proven and probable mineral reserves are 4.26 million tonnes (Mt) at 4.8 g/t gold and 3.0 g/t silver, for 658,000 ounces of gold and 414,000 ounces of silver, respectively.
The optimized life-of-mine – LOM plan has a higher grade and recovered gold ounce profile, compared with the original 2014 LOM plan.
There is an improved estimate based on detailed reconciliation data that supports previously issued 2020 guidance and three-year outlook for Ada Tepe.
The mineral resource and mineral reserve update for the Ada Tepe mine was initiated to account for detailed reconciliation studies conducted since the start-up of operations, grade control drilling and mining depletion to July 31, 2020.
Based on the final pit design, a strategic mine planning study was conducted to optimize net present value of mine cash flows, balanced against operational constraints that include mine production, process plant throughput rates, stockpiling capacity and mine life.
The chosen optimal scenario maintains production until 2026 and assumes a plant throughput of approximately 750,000 tonnes per annum. This scenario generated an improved and optimized recovered gold ounce profile when compared with the previous 2014 LOM plan.
On the Ada Tepe mine concession, approximately 8,000 metres of drilling are planned at the Surnak prospect and two other satellite deposits for the fourth quarter of 2020, with the goal of establishing mineral resources and extending Ada Tepe’s mine life.
Additional exploration activities in 2020 have focused on target delineation and resource definition drilling of epithermal veins on the Chiirite licence, located approximately 25 kilometres northeast of Ada Tepe, with approximately 6,000 metres of drilling completed this year.
For 2021, Dundee is planning approximately 32,000 metres of drilling at Ada Tepe, with a focus on delineation of additional resources within the mine licence and advancing other prospective targets on regional licences.