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Group Ten Metals: Heritage Mining Acquisition Is a ‘Great Deal for Both Parties’

Source: Maurice Jackson for Streetwise Reports   09/03/2021

Maurice Jackson spoke with Michael Rowley, CEO of Group Ten Metals, about Heritage…

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This article was originally published by Streetwise Reports

Source: Maurice Jackson for Streetwise Reports   09/03/2021

Maurice Jackson spoke with Michael Rowley, CEO of Group Ten Metals, about Heritage Mining Ltd.'s deal to acquire up to a 90% interest in Group Ten's Black Lake-Drayton gold project in Ontario, Canada. According to the details, Heritage is poised to make payments of 7.2 million shares and CA$320,000 to Group Ten Metals, complete the exploration & development work, and grant Group Ten a 10% carried interest in the project through completion of a feasibility study.

Maurice Jackson: Joining us for a conversation is Michael Rowley, the CEO of Group Ten Metals Inc. (PGE:TSX.V; PGEZF:OTCQB; 5D32:FSE). Glad to be speaking with you today, as you have a big announcement for shareholders regarding the Black Lake–Drayton gold project. Before we begin, Mr. Rowley, please introduce us to Group Ten Metals and the opportunity the company presents to shareholders.     

Michael Rowley: Group Ten is focused on advancing our Stillwater West project as a premier source of low-carbon ‘green metals’ in Montana’s Stillwater district, beside Sibanye-Stillwater Ltd. (SBSW:NYSE)’s mine complex. Within the next few weeks, we expect to debut our maiden resource estimates of nickel, copper, palladium, platinum, rhodium, gold, and cobalt, on that project which we expect will compare favorably with our peers and position us for growth based on this years drill campaign.

Along with owning half of the iconic Stillwater district in Montana, Group Ten also has two other district-scale land positions, the Black Lake Drayton gold project in Ontario that you mentioned a minute ago, and the Kluane PGE-Ni-Cu-Co project in the Yukon.  All three of these are big brownfield land positions in great districts, and they are 100% owned by Group Ten because we were acquiring them strategically during the bear market when great assets were available inexpensively. We are focused more than ever on Stillwater, and with that our non-core assets are effectively up for sale or spin-out in the first in a series in that regard.

Maurice Jackson: Well, let's begin today in Ontario is Group Ten Metals has just announced a letter of intent with Heritage Mining on the sale of the Black Lake–Drayton gold project. Congratulations, sir.

Michael Rowley: Thank you, we are excited about the potential we see there. Heritage Mining is a new listing with an excellent team, and they are well equipped to focus on Black Lake and give it the attention it deserves while granting excellent exposure to that success.

Black Lake is a rare asset that is hard to find in this current, improving market with increasing activity in junior exploration. It checks all the boxes. It is a big land position that shares an emerging district with a 3Moz development-stage high-grade gold project, yet is underexplored. So there is lots of smoke, someone just needs to find the fire. 

Treasury Metals Inc. (TML:TSX: TSRMF:OTCQB) has done great work to the west of us consolidating the rest of the district, and Rainy River, farther to the west is now in production with New Gold Inc. (NGD:TSX; NGD:NYSE.MKT). This whole belt was late to the game because of limited access and shallow ground cover, but developments at Rainy River in the 1990s changed that, and now there is over 14Moz in the belt, and growing.

Maurice Jackson: All right, let's get into the exciting stuff, sir. Please share the terms of the agreement with us and in particular, the cash and share compensation that Group 10 Metals will be receiving along with the carried interest in the potential for discovery payments.

Michael Rowley: It's a great deal for both parties. Group Ten will gain a major share position in a newly listed company that's focused on precious metals and focused on developing tier one assets, developing resources. And we get that 10% free carried interest through to feasibility study. So we can be at the table at a later stage to negotiate the sale of that during a possible broader consolidation play in the district.

We received $320,000 in cash payments in the first two years of the deal as well. And we receive bonus payments of $1 for every ounce of gold that is formerly brought on the books in any category at any time and even in multiple stages. That has a $10 million cap on that, the district already hosts more than 10 million ounces. So that figure is certainly possible given the area.

Maurice Jackson: So that we better appreciate the terms, would you please provide us with a quick bio on Heritage Mining and what they bring to the table?   

Michael Rowley: Heritage Mining is a very experienced team with an excellent track record of raising cash and advancing projects, especially in Ontario and Quebec. Heritage is familiar with this geology. They're keen to hit the ground, which is very pleasing to us because the point of this deal is that we want someone else to raise the $5 million and advance this asset the way we think it can be advanced. So they certainly appear to be capable of that. They have an excellent record of proving ounces, developing mines, operating companies, and marketing, raising capital.

Maurice Jackson: Where will this transaction put Group Ten Metals in terms of ownership, percentage on the share structure for Heritage Mining?

Michael Rowley: Well, we'll have to see what their first placement looks like once they're trading and that's a couple of months out from now. But we expect to be about 10% of the company initially, and then maintain between the 5% and 10% level from there. A key point on that note also is that we have that bonus structure having a carried interest. Therefore, we are not relying solely on our share position for value. We've got several avenues here to be exposed to that success that we expect them to have.

Maurice Jackson: And when does Group Ten Metals expect the transaction will close?

Michael Rowley: We look good to close around the 60-day mark around mid-October.

Maurice Jackson: Leaving Ontario and onto the Yukon where Group Ten Metals has another non-core asset within his property bank that is equally has been receiving a lot of interest from prospective buyers. And I'm speaking of the Kluane PGE, nickel, copper project in the Yukon. Sir, any updates for us?

Michael Rowley: The Kluane is another explored project. We have over 250 square kilometers in the under-explored Kluane Belt, which is a fantastic belt of deposits. Another ultramafic system like Stillwater reaching from BC through into Alaska. The most advanced one. There is Nickel Creek Platinum Corp. (NCPCF:OTC), formerly Wellgreen. And the news there is that they've been increasingly active in the past year. And that's good to see. They've been drilling, they've been doing geophysics and they've been doing it up on the northwest end of the system towards us, which is music to our ears. We'll be seeing them at Beaver Creek and we're looking forward to further activity from them.

You're correct that we're getting more interested in those projects and that they like Black Lake are effectively for sale. We just have low carrying costs. Then we're taking our time looking for the right deals.

Maurice Jackson: Leaving the Yukon less visit Montana, which hosts your flagship Stillwater West project. But before we get into the latest news on the Stillwater West, would you please remind us about the unique value proposition before us on your flagship project?

Michael Rowley: The Stillwater West is fantastic.  In 2017, the opportunity was presented to us to own half of the iconic Stillwater District, which sounds too good to be true in a way. But thanks to several factors that came together at the right time. Most of all, a local vendor who had spotted a bankruptcy that left these claims available, and he was quick, he bought the data from the past operators and he tied up the claims.

We've since tripled land position. We now own half the district we've built a terrific database, predictive geologic model. The point is that we are well on our way to proving ourselves as a primary source of green metals, battery-grade nickel, copper, cobalt, with platinum group elements, palladium, platinum, rhodium, and also gold.

In a U.S. district beside three mines and a smelter complex. These are big disseminated, sulfide deposits. They convert easily and cleanly to nickel sulfate. And we are weeks away from our first resources on the project, which is a very exciting moment for any junior exploration company. This will be a solid debut, it'll position us nicely among our peers. And we see terrific room to grow from there. If you've seen our news release back in April, where we related the 3D models from our IP survey, the emerging images of our Resource models, and the potential we have for expansion.

Maurice Jackson: The Stillwater West is currently undergoing its largest exploration program to date, which is a 10,000-meter drill program there recently added a second drill rig. Sir, take us on-site and get us up to speed on the program.

Michael Rowley: We have two rigs turning, which is music to our ears. We're hitting sulfide very nicely in both, massive sulfide in places, net texture, and disseminated in others. The predictive model that we've been working up the past few years is working beautifully. And that's a key point. We're now hitting with a high degree of predictability, which is what geologists want to see. The district is well mineralized.  Our neighbor has 87 million ounces in current resources, reserves, and 14 million ounces in past production of the highest-grade palladium-platinum in the world.

That's a single magmatic pulse laid down across 40 kilometers. These things are staggering in scale, and it's also a nickel-copper-sulfide deposit that is worth noting. We are just below them in that stratigraphy. And we're seeing similar continuity of these horizons. We are hitting new ones all the time, they seem to run for great lengths and it's easy to add ounces and pounds.

The program that you mentioned that's underway now should do very nicely for expanding the inaugural resources as fast as we can in 2022. So we'll debut numbers here in summer 2021, and then look to expand them as fast as possible in 2022.

Maurice Jackson: All right, you have two truth machines drilling away. Do you already have some core in the lab and any timeframe on when we may receive some assays?

Michael Rowley: The first one and a half holes are in the labs, include some nice-looking core. The labs are saying six weeks though: Give me into October to get those into a news release.

Maurice Jackson: Now we won't hold you to that, but we will hold the labs to that. All right, switching gears, let's look at some numbers. Sir, please provide the capital structure for Group Ten Metals.

Michael Rowley: Group Ten Metals has 163 million shares outstanding at today's price. That puts us around a $50 million market cap. We feel that is significantly below where we could be based on our peers. I think a good peer might be Canada Nickel Company (CNIKF:OTCMKTS), for example. Noting of course that they don't have the platinum group element component that we have. However, they are four or five times our market cap with a similar, large, lower-grade nickel project. And we think that makes it a compelling comparison.

We have $6 million cash in the bank, and we have $13 million in the money options and warrants. Those are priced between .21 and .30 cents. No placements are planned for the foreseeable future and [we're] fully funded, fully permitted for this year's program. And even into next year at this point.

Maurice Jackson: Speaking of those warrants. Expect for me to go ahead and exercise mine. Speaking of the shares, Group Ten Metals recently upgraded its DTC eligibility. What does that mean for shareholders? 

Michael Rowley: I had to look into it myself to be reminded. DTC is an electronic clearing service. This simplifies the process of trading and enhances liquidity for American traders, which we have a really good U.S. shareholder base. So this is meaningful in terms of fast and efficient settling of those trades.

Maurice Jackson: Before we close, Mr. Rowley, what would you like to say to shareholders?

Michael Rowley: This is an exciting time for Group Ten Metals! If you're familiar with the Lassonde Curve value creation in junior miners were at that just prediscovery phase where you get that rapid increase in value. And it's quite a privilege to be here. It's exciting to be systematically exploring the Stillwater Complex, which is famously metal-rich, and yet also under-explored. And it's remarkable, but the 215 drill holes to date across 32 kilometers of claims, 61 square kilometers. That's not a lot.

And we're testing things all the time that have never been drilled, and we're finding nice-looking sulfides there. So to be the ones systematically adding value and looking like, in terms of the market, that we're on the left end of the Lassonde Curve, but knowing that we're much farther along in terms of having comfort about some size and grade here...Pretty exciting.

Maurice Jackson: Last question. What did I forget to ask?

Michael Rowley: Well, it's probably a good point to touch on the broader commodity markets, and you know metal markets are going sideways at the moment. But the fundamentals are in place perhaps more than ever for a really good steady increase. We're looking for all the metals in our suite of commodity baskets to resume their upward momentum likely this fall.

We've got the FED meeting behind us today. Things look positive: The fundamentals are there, and we're looking forward to increased value for all our commodities, especially, in nickel. We're hearing increasingly of the coming shortfall in nickel sulfide, in particular clean nickel that's good for batteries or rather makes nickel sulfate in the most environmentally friendly manner.

We're excited to be part of that and we're looking forward to that renewed momentum. This is a good buying opportunity to buy shares in Group Ten Metals. 

Maurice Jackson: Sir, for readers that want to get more information on Group Ten Metals, please share the website address.

Michael Rowley:

Maurice Jackson: Mr. Rowley, it’s been a pleasure speaking with you today, wishing you and Group Ten Metals the absolute best, sir.

And as a reminder, I am a licensed representative to buy and sell precious metals through Miles Franklin Precious Metals Investments, where we have several options to expand your precious metals portfolio, from physical delivery of gold, silver, platinum, palladium, and rhodium, to offshore depositories, and precious metals IRA’s. Give me a call at 855.505.1900 or you may email:  Finally, please subscribe to, where we provide: Mining Insights and Bullion Sales, subscription is free.

Maurice Jackson is the founder of Proven and Probable, a site that aims to enrich its subscribers through education in precious metals and junior mining companies that will enrich the world.

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4) This article does not constitute investment advice. Each reader is encouraged to consult with his or her individual financial professional and any action a reader takes as a result of information presented here is his or her own responsibility. By opening this page, each reader accepts and agrees to Streetwise Reports' terms of use and full legal disclaimer. This article is not a solicitation for investment. Streetwise Reports does not render general or specific investment advice and the information on Streetwise Reports should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Streetwise Reports does not endorse or recommend the business, products, services or securities of any company mentioned on Streetwise Reports.

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Bryah nabs strategic exploration ground around namesake project

Special Report: Bryah Resources has expanded its footprint in WA, securing three exploration licences covering 50 km2 around its existing … Read More

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Bryah Resources has expanded its footprint in WA, securing three exploration licences covering 50 km2 around its existing land holding in the Bryah and Padbury Basins.

The Bryah Basin hosts the high-grade copper-gold mines at DeGrussa, discovered by Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) in 2009, and at Horseshoe Lights, which was mined until 1994.

It also hosts several historical and current manganese mines including the company’s Horseshoe South mine.

Bryah Resources’ (ASX:BYH) is confident that the new tenements – E52/3848, E52/3898 and E52/3963 – cover prospective and under-explored areas which have gold, copper-gold and manganese exploration potential.

The tenements were acquired for 4 million ordinary shares at an issue price of $0.055/share.

Tenure right next to historic gold mine

The largest tenement (E52/3898) covers exploration ground adjacent to the historic Wilthorpe shallow open cut gold mine.

The mine straddles the boundary of new tenement E52/3898 and an adjacent E52/2059, held by Westgold Resources (ASX:WGX).

It was mined by Dominion Mining from 1993-94, producing 4,650 ounces of gold from 72,817 tonnes of ore grading 2.0 g/t gold.

And there has been limited gold exploration since.

Based on the reported mineral occurrences, Bryah considers the tenement package highly prospective for copper, gold, and manganese.

Pic: Tenement location plan

Exploration planning underway

The company will shortly commence a thorough desktop review of all historical exploration reports as well as its own extensive database.

The data review will support a detailed phase of exploration planning, ahead of ground exploration activities.

In the meantime, reverse circulation drilling is underway at Bryah’s manganese JV, in a 2000m program fully funded by partner OM Holdings.




This article was developed in collaboration with Bryah Resources, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.


The post Bryah nabs strategic exploration ground around namesake project appeared first on Stockhead.

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Mining battery metals from the sea floor – could it soon be a low-impact reality?

Low-impact sea mining could become a reality for one ambitious company with the arrival of a 228m ship in Rotterdam … Read More
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Low-impact sea floor mining could finally become a reality for one ambitious company with the arrival of a 228-metre ship in Rotterdam earlier this week, heralding a critical milestone in its plans to become a producer of battery metals sourced from the deep ocean.

Named the Hidden Gem, the vessel is the key to The Metal Company’s (NASDAQ:TMC) vision of developing the world’s largest source of battery metals from the ocean floor with commercial production plans targeted for 2024.

TMC’s strategic partner, Allseas, will be converting a former deep-sea drilling vessel into a subsea mining vessel, retrofitting the ship with equipment to gather polymetallic nodules on the seafloor within contract areas held by TMC in the Pacific Ocean’s Clarion Clipperton Zone (CCZ).

The Hidden Gem. Pic: Business Wire

These potato-sized polymetallic nodules contain high grades of critical minerals such as nickel, manganese, copper and cobalt, which are integral to the manufacturing of electric vehicle batteries and other renewable energy technologies.

Enough to power 250 million EVs

Back in April 2020, TMC acquired its third seabed contract area to explore for polymetallic nodules from Tonga Offshore Mining Limited (TOML), which opened it up to a further 74,713km square block of exploration rights.

The third contract area comprises an inferred resource of 756 wet tonnes of polymetallic nodules, meaning its expanded footprint now contains enough nickel, copper, cobalt and manganese to build more than 250 million electric vehicle batteries.

Speaking to the TOML acquisition, TMC’s chairman and CEO Gerard Barron said the project will enable The Metal Company to bring more critical minerals to market to break through the bottleneck and shift away from fossil fuels.

“Our research shows that ocean polymetallic nodules can provide society with these metals at a fraction of the environmental and social impacts associated with land-based extraction.”

Pic: Supplied


Environmental concerns about sea floor mining

The environmental concerns which surround mining of the ocean’s floors are well documented, with several jurisdictions and regulatory bodies imposing bans and strict regulations on subsea mining due to the lack of understanding around the environmental impacts and growing fears about the irreversible effects these practices may have on the fragile ecosystems that we know very little about.

Many scientists believe that far more resources have been spent researching ways to mine the ocean floor rather than studying the impact this type of mining might have on the underwater environment.

TMC, however, believes that the Hidden Gem subsea vessel, which will deploy a 4.5km riser to collect the nodules off the seafloor without drilling, blasting or digging, can avoid much of the environmental disturbance associated with traditional sea floor mining methods.

Past failures

Planning to mine the oceanic crust’s wealth of mineral resources is a well-trodden path that’s seen many companies fail to deliver on their promises of production due to regulatory and financial hurdles.

Companies such as Nautilius and its high-grade Solwara 1 copper-gold project off the PNG coast is one recent example.

Nautilius had plans to turn its Solwara 1 project into the world’s first underwater copper-gold mining operation but wound up delisting from the TSX and going bankrupt in 2019.

The Canadian company had developed three undersea robots to mine hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor before funding issues became a problem midway through construction.

On the road to meeting deep-sea battery metals goal

There are examples of successful mining ventures in the ocean such as in Indonesia’s tin industry, diamond extraction in Namibia, and gold mining off Alaska’s coast, however these ventures are often heavily scrutinised by environmental lobby groups and constantly face the risk of being shut down due to increasing global environmental awareness and a trend towards greener policies from the governments who licence them.

While there is still plenty of obstacles and work to be done, TMC, with the help of Allseas and their new vessel, which is expected to be the first ship classified as a sub-sea mining vessel under American Bureau of Shipping, are much closer than many of their peers to realising the goal of supplying the market with battery metals from the seafloor.

The post Mining battery metals from the sea floor – could it soon be a low-impact reality? appeared first on Stockhead.

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Energy & Critical Metals

Pilbara Minerals’ Ken Brinsden on that record-breaking lithium auction and why high pricing is ‘expected to persist’

Pilbara Minerals sold an 8,000t spodumene cargo on the spot market for a record $US2,240/t. Where do prices go from here? … Read More
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Last week, the share price of Aussie hard rock lithium miner Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) hit an all-time high off the back of its second Battery Material Exchange (BMX) auction.

The miner sold an 8,000t spodumene cargo on the spot market for an extraordinary $US2,240/t, essentially doubling the $US1,250/tonne received via the inaugural auction held late July.

This is a record price for spodumene concentrate — far above the peak at the last price cycle in 2017/18, where the highest spodumene price reached $US1,000/tonne.

The first PLS auction price (green cross below) was so far outside the trendline it caused the average price to spike in July.

BMX #2 will have an even bigger impact.

While the super high price can be partially attributed to the relatively unique and competitive form of sale (open auction), it also verified what has long been suspected – there is not enough lithium being produced to meet current demand.

Good news for miners.

Pilbara Minerals managing director Ken Brinsden says significant participation in the first round of the BMX auction, combined with lithium chemicals pricing continuing to accelerate, meant the company was always confident of strong response in the second auction.

“We were optimistic it would be a healthy price and well bid. That was certainly the case,” Brinsden told Stockhead.

“As to the final price – look, we were probably a little surprised as to where it landed.”

While a date has yet to be set, Brinsden expects at least one more BMX auction before the end of the year.

“We would say the lot size would not be much different – 8,000 to 10,000t, up to a maximum of 15,000t,” he says.

“What it boils down to is the restart of the Ngungaju operation because that’s where the volumes for the spot market will come from.”

The restart of the ‘Ngungaju’ facility at Pilgangoora — or the former Altura operation – is a very important part of the business.

At full capacity that plant should be about 200,000t of uncontracted spodumene concentrate by about the middle of next year.

“It will be about 30% of our underlying production from Pilgangoora,” he says.

“Those tonnes are well positioned to feed the emerging spot market.”


A maturing lithium market

Brinsden says the Pilbara Minerals would consider having other lithium companies use the BMX platform “because we advocate for greater transparency in pricing”.

The contract market — where most tonnes are sold — has traditionally been very opaque, with prices determined behind closed doors.

This, amongst other things, makes it harder for aspiring miners to get finance.

“Greater volumes in the spot market makes sense because it represents a step toward the maturity of lithium markets,” Brinsden says.

“Greater transparency is going to translate to greater, more definitive pricing outcomes, the potential for futures markets, hedging instruments – all the financial tools being built around the industry that support the flow of capital.

“That is very natural, and it happens in the growth of just about every commodities market.

“Lithium raw materials won’t be any different.”


The lithium price boom ‘expected to persist’

This high pricing is fundamental, Brinsden says.

“It’s all about the next round of incentive pricing to attract capital to lithium raw materials supply,” he says.

“That is what is going to be required to grow the pool of producers to support this pretty significant global demand.”

Solving the lithium shortage isn’t as easy as turning on production.

“In the hard rock space – at least as it relates to merchant spodumene supply – the next available [production] uplift besides us is probably late next year at the earliest, I would say,” Brinsden says.

Australia’s next miner is shaping up to be Core Lithium’s (ASX:CXO) ‘Finniss’ project in the NT, which is targeting first production in the second half of 2022.


That is why tightness in the market is expected to continue.

And while one cannot say that the market price for spodumene is now ~$US2,000/t — when the majority of spodumene supply is currently being shipped for between $700/tonne and $1,100/tonne – it does demonstrate that more is needed, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence analyst George Miller says.

“Spodumene prices such as this indicate that converter margins are being passed upstream to where the tightness is in that market — spodumene supply,” he says.

“Feedstock inventory with many spodumene converters is either non-existent or quickly dwindling.

“Meanwhile, very little additional tonnage [will] come online in the near-term as a result of underinvestment and low prices within the lithium industry over the past three years.”


The post Pilbara Minerals’ Ken Brinsden on that record-breaking lithium auction and why high pricing is ‘expected to persist’ appeared first on Stockhead.

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