Australia

Great Southern Mining raises A$3.5mln for brownfield exploration at Coxs Find and potentially company-making assets at Edinburgh Park

“The focus is on gold,” says Mark Major, the chief operating officer of Great Southern Mining Ltd (ASX:GSN).

“Its the commodity of choice.”

Hard to argue with that statement when gold has outperformed almost every asset class over the past year, putting in a solid 30% gain in US dollar terms since May 2019, and an even more encouraging 40% or so in Aussie dollar terms.

The Great Southern Mining share price beats both of those however, having risen by more than 60% over the past 12 months. At one point at the end of last year it was trading at nearly four times the value it was trading at in May.

So, even if volumes are light, this is a stock that the market clearly likes. The choice of commodity, as Mark Major mentions, is one reason.

But there are others too, in particular, the quality of the companys assets in Western Australia and Queensland, and the quality of the companys management team.

The companys executive chairman is John Terpu, the man behind Conquest Mining, one of the two companies that merged in 2011 to form one of Australias most prominent mid-tier companies, Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN).

Major himself has 25 years of experience in the junior and mid-tier resources spaces, and has operated both in Australia and internationally. Whats more, it seems likely that he will eventually graduate from his current position as chief operating officer into a fully-fledged chief executive role, becoming thereby one of the main driving forces of the company in the years ahead.

Hes already exuding a palpable sense of enthusiasm for the projects on offer inside the Great Southern Mining portfolio, in particular Coxs Find in the Laverton district of Western Australia, where historic production that ran till the late 1940s delivered ore at a head grade of 21 grams per tonne.

That material was in itself mined at a 12 gram per tonne cut-off so it comes as no surprise to discover that theres considerable potential at Coxs Find from waste dumps and secondary ore thats still sitting at surface and remnant in the ground.

Major is firmly of the view that serious exploration at Coxs Find could pay big dividends, and in the near term. The company thinking is that the five targets that have so far been generated could each yield up to 150,000 ounces of gold. And theres also the potential to go deeper into the original mine itself, where production only ever went down to 150 metres.

Accordingly, the rigs are now being lined up.

“Were about to embark on the first major drilling campaign for over 30 years,” says Major.

“Well drill 9,000 metres, or maybe even close to 10,000 metres, where the old timers developed, targeting the extension of the orebody as it plunges down near the mine.”

The drilling will also confirm if the structural model the company has put together is correct and, if an attractive zone of mineralisation is intersected, it will be drilled out as a matter of course.

“The opportunitys there,” says Major.

“Its got high grade ounces, and you can go anywhere with high grade ounces – we wouldnt have to build our own mill. Our neighbours will be crying out for high grade ore.”

And investors meanwhile, will be sitting back in satisfaction and watching as Great Southern embarks on the next stage of its journey.

First will be the nearby Mon Ami project, just to the south of Coxs Find. This project already boasts a resource of 59,000 ounces grading 1.7 grams per tonne.

“That prospect has the potential to be mined tomorrow,” says Major.

“It has free digging at surface and is open in all directions. The north extension has targets and to the south there are old historical adits and shafts. The oxide layer goes to 120 metres, and well be looking at trying to get it to 200,000 and 300,000 ounces inferred, of which significant measured and indicated resource would make us ready to go mining.”

The plan would be to start mining at Mon Ami with contract miners and toll treat the ore, although its altogether possible that the project might have been sold on to an interested party before Great Southern actually gets to that stage. An outcome like that wouldnt just be wishful thinking – when he was putting the company together John Terpu deliberately selected assets that were close to other major projects and companies.

But, when all is said and done, says Major, neither Coxs Find nor Mon Ami is going to be a multi-million Read More – Source