I’ve easily had more than 100 CEOs of publicly traded junior mining companies pitch me their company’s story and i’ve never heard a CEO as enthusiastic and detailed in his presentation as Oceanus Resources’ (TSX-V: OCN, Market Cap: C$26 million) CEO Glenn Jessome. I was so impressed with both the quality of Oceanus management and the potential for exploration upside at its flagship El Tigre Gold & Silver project in Sonora, Mexico that I became a shareholder shortly after Mr. Jessome and I concluded our call.
Sonora is by far the best province for mining in Mexico and El Tigre is the site of a historic underground high-grade gold & silver mine which operated from 1903 to 1938, producing 353,000 ounces of gold and 67.4 million ounces of silver over that time. The historic mining was focused on chasing high grade veins underground with grades averaging 1308g/t Ag and 7.54g/t Au.
The El Tigre project was acquired by Oceanus from its former owner El Tigre Silver in an all-stock deal at the end of 2015
. The El Tigre property consists of 9 mining concessions comprising a total of 215 square kilometres. El Tigre is 100% owned by Oceanus and the concessions are royalty-free with no Ejido lands.
Oceanus hit the ground running at El Tigre after determining that its previous owners had probably been too narrow in terms of the scope of what they were looking for; El Tigre Silver had completed more than 9,000 meters of drilling on the property between 2011 and 2013 comprising 59 core holes. Curiously, El Tigre Silver sent less than 20% of these cores to the lab to be assayed. Upon taking over the project Oceanus assayed all of the El Tigre legacy cores which had not been sent to the lab. This resulted in several truly impressive intersects including…
Oceanus then proceeded to conduct its own infill drilling which resulted in additional impressive intercepts including…
Oceanus is in the midst of a 10,000 meter drill program which will be completed by the end of Q1 2017. Investors can expect a steady flow of drill results over the next couple of months as the current drill program progresses. A maiden resource estimate can also be expected by the end of Q1 2017, while investors can expect a PEA by the end of 2017.
What really stood out to me in talking to Mr. Jessome is the sheer amount of exploration potential that exists at El Tigre. Several of the holes which have been drilled end in mineralization which means that there is potential for the width of the deposit to be expanded; Oceanus is working towards expanding the width of the project; The main zone at El Tigre is at least 100 meters wide with considerable potential to expand beyond that up to 200 meters.
The current drill program is focused on both infill drilling of existing gaps and extending the width of the deposit; several legacy holes ended in mineralization which offers promising potential for expanding the size of the deposit.
As the main zone at El Tigre is filled in and the zone is widened with drilling at where previous legacy drill holes ended in mineralization it could mean that the size of the El Tigre deposit is expanded. While cautious in his language I was able to deduce that Mr. Jessome is confident that Oceanus is sitting on over 1,000,000 of ounces of gold that can be mined with open pit heap-leach mining techniques. The economics of such a deposit are likely to be compelling and investors can expect a PEA during the first half of 2017.
There is another aspect to the Oceanus story that offers shareholders a great deal of blue sky potential; the El Tigre Project boasts 7 high-grade gold/silver veins stretched across more than 5 kilometers:
The northern and southern ends of Oceanus’ main El Tigre Project areas have seen minimal drilling and offer ample greenfield targets . This gives El Tigre district potential and the Oceanus CEO was very optimistic regarding drilling targets in these underexplored areas of OCN’s concessions; Jessome said that OCN plans to begin drilling in these areas in Q2 2017.
Oceanus has caught the attention of the Mexican mining community in the last year with its progress at El Tigre. As the company continues with its 10,000 meter drill program into the new year 2017 is shaping up to be a very exciting year for Oceanus with the potential to progress El Tigre from an exploration stage project to a substantial and growing resource with compelling economics. We look forward to following Oceanus closely and updating readers with key developments over the coming months.
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