The company went public in 2007 as "Investissements St-Pierre" and changed its name later that year to Cartier Resources. One (1) million seed shares were sold in 2006 for $0.125 and another 5.2 million insider shares were sold in 2006 for $0.25 per share. In the first years the company acquired a number of projects and completed a number of private placements (such as the ones at $0.50 in 2007, at $0.22 in 2009, at $0.44 in 2010, at $0.38 in 2011).
2012 and 2013 were important years for Cartier when it started strategically deploying their cash position. Cartier acquired four (4) high potential projects in the most difficult years of the gold equities bear market and that is why Cartier is currently in a very strong position.
MARCH 22, 2012: Cartier to acquire 50% interest in Fenton project (by issuing 50,000 common shares to Soquem upon receipt of regulatory approvals and incurring exploration expenditures of $1.5-million)
MAY 23, 2013: Cartier has agreed to acquire immediately a 100-per-cent interest in the Benoist project in consideration for the payment of a sum of $250,000 in cash and the issuance of 650,000 common shares.
JULY 11, 2013: Cartier Resources offer submitted to PWC (trustee for Blue Note Mining under Bankruptcy) for acquisition of Chimo Mine accepted. The agreed purchase price is $261,000.
MAY 18, 2016: Cartier has agreed to acquire the Wilson project in consideration of an aggregate purchase price of $72,000
Chimo Mine Project
• The Chimo Mine produced 379,012 ounces of gold (MERN DV 85-05 to DV-97-01).
• Cartier owns 100% interests of the property (1% NSR IAMGOLD)
• Year-round access by road, proximal to 6 custom mills.
• Gold mineralized material was mined intermittently from 14 zones by 3 different producers.
• Mine infrastructure consists of a network of drifts distributed on 19 levels, connected by a 3-compartment shaft 965 m deep. The headframe and surface facilities were dismantled in 2008 but the electrical line and the sand pit are still present.
Current Phase III drilling is focused on expanding the dimensions of gold-bearing Zones 5NE, 5M4 and 6N1 as they are proximal to existing mine infrastructures.
There is no resource estimate yet, but Cartier is targeting at least 1 million ounces of gold. We will probably find out later this year if that target is realistic as Cartier is planning to issue a maiden resource estimate this year to show the market that Cartier and Chimo are undervalued.
Considering that there are several gold mines in the area, it is likely that the Chimo material will one day be processed by one of the bigger companies in the region, for example:
- Doyon-Mouska (Iamgold) – 127 km from Chimo
- LaRonde (Agnico Eagle) – 100 km from Chimo
- Goldex (Agnico Eagle) – 58 km from Chimo
- Lamaque (Eldorado) – 49 km from Chimo
- Lebel Sur Quevillon (Osisko to be built) – 144 km from Chimo
I was reading some paragraphs of the Osisko Windfall PEA to understand why Osisko chooses to have the processing plant so far from the Windfall deposit.
QUOTE “At steady state, it is forecast that a total of approximately 3,200 tpd of mineralized material will be transported from the Windfall Lake (2,600 tpd) and Osborne Bell (600 tpd) mines to the process plant over a distance of 115 km and 35 km respectively.“ UNQUOTE
And about costs:
QUOTE “The annual operating costs for mineralized material transport (truck loading, transport, dumping and administration) was calculated to be $15.5M or $14.26 per tonne milled.“ UNQUOTE
Osisko prefers to move the material from the mine to the process plant "in town", instead of moving all the workers from the town to the mining camp. I assume that Agnico would have similar or lower costs per tonne if they would ever mine Cartier’s Chimo deposit and process it at LaRonde (approx 100 km from Chimo). Agnico is planning to put Akasaba West in production which they took over from Alexandria Minerals. That material will also be trucked over a similar distance and processed at LaRonde.
Lapa comparison to Chimo Mine
Agnico Eagle and Breakwater Resources had an option agreement on the relatively small Lapa mine in the early 2000's. When Agnico earned into 80%, it acquired the remaining 20% for $8.925 million in 2003 when gold was priced at $350. It also granted a 1% royalty to Breakwater which Agnico purchased in 2008 for $6.25 million. In 2003 Lapa had a resource estimation of 814k ounces gold. This means Agnico Eagle paid $15.2 million for the 20% ($76 million for 100% valuation incl royalty). Chimo has no N43-101 compliant resource statement yet, but if it has between 800,000 and 1,200,000 high grade ounces, I suspect that $80 per ounce is the absolute minimum a company would have to pay. to acquire it
In 1993, the historical estimate calculated by Minnova for the Pusticamica Gold Deposit is 481 851 tm grading 5.52 g/t Au, 12.10 g/t Ag et 0.27 % Cu inside of 4.63 millions of metric tons of rock grading 1,89 g/t Au (Murgor Resources Inc. press release dated January 17th, 2012).
- Pusticamica Gold Deposit drilled over first 300 m depth;
- Pusticamica Gold Deposit defined as 500 m length by nearly 50 m wide with a sub-vertical dip and a plunge 50° SW;
- Gold is associated with network of pyrite-chalcopyrite-chlorite within rhyolitic lavas;
- Gold grades are found in contact with chalcopyrite near pyrite and to a lesser quantity of sphalerite. All these minerals are present in rhyolitic lavas altered in chlorite;
- In March 2015, 94 drill holes had been drilled on the Benoist property for a total of 32,355 m.
- Best historic drill intercepts:
- 5.3 g/t Au over 56.1m incl 10.5 g/t Au over 7.8m
- 5.6 g/t Au over 53.6m incl 11.6 g/t Au over 9.3m
- 6.5 g/t Au over 37.0m incl 12.9 g/t Au over 15.6m
- Best intersections by Cartier (2012 – 2014)
- 2.4 g/t Au over 53.0m incl 10.3 g/t Au over 5m
- 1.7 g/t Au over 65.0m incl 24.5 g/t Au over 3m
- 1.1 g/t Au over 27.0m incl 12.3 g/t Au over 1m
Cartier Resources decided not to re-drill the Pusticamica Gold Deposit, but instead to drill 700 meter below the deposit to demonstrate that the system continues at depth. Wide intersections of gold were intersected as shown by the drill highlights shown above.
After the 2014 Benoist drill program Cartier was on a conference when an Agnico Eagle geologist finishing a PhD thesis at depth on LaRonde came by the booth to review the core. After 45 minutes the geologist came back with Agnico Eagle leadership because apparently they believed that certain aspects of Benoist are comparable to LaRonde. In 2016 Agnico Eagle made a 19.9% investment in Cartier Resources.
In 2015 a geophysical survey was performed that can read up to 500 meters deep. It provides a geophysical signature that is quite unique. Since there is a lot of drill data this geophysical data can be better interpreted and therefore the likelihood of “false calls/artefacts” is much lower. Not only is the known deposit very clearly visible in the data, there are a couple of other major anomalies as well. This survey was performed after the drill campaign and therefore Cartier only later found out that they drilled the weakest part of the anomaly. Therefore Benoist has drill ready targets and a major drill campaign shall be planned to test these anomalies. For the time being the focus will only be on the Chimo mine.
Cartier Resources drill costs
There are not many companies the size of Cartier that are sole funding aggressive drill campaigns like Cartier.
Cartier drilled a total of 67,862 meters between October 2016 and March 2019.
- Chimo: 47,588 meters
- Caddilac Extension Property: 3,410 meters
- Fenton: 7,814 meters
- Wilson: 9,050 meters
On Sep 30, 2016 Cartier's working capital was -/-C$525K. In between Sep 30 2016 - March 2019 Cartier raised C$19.3m by private placements. In March 2019 Cartier's working capital was approximately C$6m. Cash out in that period: C$ 13.8m
"Cash out" divided by total number of meters drilled = C$203 per meter drilled (all-in)
All-in means in this case that really ALL other costs are included.
Not many companies can keep G&A so low that the all in drill costs per meter are at C203 per meter - not even in the Abitibi Greenstone Belt.
Wilson and Fenton
This article does not include information about Wilson and Fenton. This will be covered in an article at a later stage. Both Wilson and Fenton are also high potential projects in my view and should certainly not be forgotten by the market. The projects are located in the "Osisko Mining district" and luckily for Cartier - Osisko was just too late with their staking rush in 2014 to get their hands on Benoist, Wilson, and Fenton.
(does not include all information but provides a good impression of Cartier history)