Artemis Resources emerges as a multi-commodity producer

By Trevor Hoey. Published at Mar 30, 2017, in Small Caps

While much of the recent focus has been on Artemis Resources’ (ASX:ARV) entry into the cobalt space via the acquisition of the Carlow Castle cobalt-copper-gold project near Karratha, the attention turned to the negotiation of a copper supply agreement with Blackrock Metals on Wednesday.

This is extremely significant, reflected in the substantial share price rerating, given the company is on the verge of commencing gold production from its Nickol River project. ARV’s chairman, David Lenigas, said today that production is likely to start next week.

Moving from exploration to production on one project normally prompts a significant share price rerating, suggesting the prospect of bringing two projects into production while having the benefits of diversified exposure to both base metals and precious metals will really bring the company under the spotlight.

Indeed, ARV’s shares were up nearly 10% in the first hour of trading, but there could be more upside to come as investors digest today’s news regarding the company’s copper interests.

Of course it should be noted that share trading patterns should not be used as the basis for an investment as they may or may not be replicated. Those considering this stock should seek independent financial advice.

Sale of 50,000 tonnes of stockpiled ore at Whundo Mine gate to be followed by exploration program with a view to reopening copper oxide mine before year-end

Under the terms of the copper supply deal, ARV will sell 50,000 tonnes of copper oxide ore grading 1.5% to Blackrock Metals Pty Ltd, the operators of the Whim Creek copper heap leach SX-EW recovery operations.

The ore is currently located in surface stockpiles SP1 and SP2 at the Whundo copper mine, 30 kilometres South of Karratha in Western Australia and about 12 kilometres from the Radio Hill mine and sulphide treatment plant which ARV recently agreed to purchase from Fox Resources.

Delivery of the ore to Blackrock is expected to commence in early April with Blackrock responsible for the payment of all applicable royalties, loading, transportation, processing and sales costs of the copper. ARV will receive a net price of $6 per tonne at the mine gate.

All revenue received from ARV, including income expected to be generated from future sales, will be deducted from the $2 million cash payment made by ARV to Fox Resources under the terms of the Radio Hill asset sale transaction.

There is the potential for ARV to generate a higher dollar per tonne sale price from future sales which could be from a 30,000 tonne stockpile grading 3.9% copper. The higher grade should attract a better price providing the potential heap leach recoveries are sound.

Extensive drilling campaign plan for Whundo and Whundo West could lead to a reopening in 2017

All oxide ores overlying the sulphide mineralisation at Whundo were either mined and stockpiled at surface or remained unmined within the open pit. This oxide material is now readily available for a new aggressive push into a copper oxide mining and processing strategy.

Lenigas said a Program of Works (POW) has been submitted to the DMP for an extensive drilling campaign at both the Whundo and Whundo West pits to expand the open pit oxide resource, and drilling is expected to commence shortly after the approval of the POW.

Management noted that initial assessments of the Whundo mine data base show the potential to link the two pits in the oxide and supergene zones which occur from surface to depths ranging between 25 metres and 30 metres from surface.

Drill intercepts from this unmined area have included 25 metres grading 2.2% copper, 23 metres grading 2.9% copper and 9 metres grading 3.6% copper.

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