On October 25th, Pretivm Resources announced the discovery of a new high-grade gold zone about 3.5km from its current Brucejack Mine located in the Golden Triangle of British Columbia. There are a few things that immediately jumped out from this news. First of all, it is more proof that bringing in Jacques Perron and his team to lead Pretivm and move Brucejack forward was a great move.
For those that haven’t followed Pretivm, prior to 2011, it started with a modest but promising resource located near its West Zone that contained upwards of 1M oz of high grade gold. But in 2011, Pretivm made major headlines when it started releasing some truly monstrous drill results from its exploration of the Valley of the Kings Zone. And describing the results as monstrous is not mere hyperbole. Among broad intervals of 50+ meters, there were smaller intercepts with 18,754 g/t and 17,150 g/t of gold and 9,312 g/t and 7,780 g/t of silver respectively. There are veins of quartz, but these drill results had veins of visible gold. By the end of 2012, Pretivm was able to extend its delineated gold resource to more than 4 million oz. The hits just kept on rolling afterwards in the Valley of the Kings Zone. Pretivm caught my attention in May 2016 when it released results showing .5 meters of 37,117 g/t of gold and 21,301 g/t of silver. I would have loved to have seen the faces of the Pretivm team when they first pulled that piece of core out for inspection!
Pretivm immediately moved forward with bringing its Brucejack Project into production, with production commencing in 2017. While Pretivm continued exploration of its Brucejack claims and has expanded its resource significantly over the years, its share price has remained relatively flat for the past decade. In fact, PVG shares currently trade about 30% lower than its March 2012 highs. **As an initial note, Pretivm serves as a strong note of caution to the fans of various junior mining companies who are so eager to see junior exploration companies try to bring their claims into production themselves. There are untold challenges and perils of doing so without the resources and experience of established major players. On top of that, moving from exploration to production isn’t nearly as beneficial to shareholders as many would like to believe, as it takes a number of years for shareholders to begin to see real gains.** The failure to translate major discoveries at Brucejack into an increased share price has been a source of frustration for many of Pretivm’s earliest supporters.
Pretivm made some major management changes in mid-2020, including appointing a new CEO and COO. Since that time, Pretivm has been aggressively attempting to pay down its existing debt and restructuring the residue while also continuing to push for increased production and ongoing exploration near Brucejack.
This news release by Pretivm is yet another indication that its current management is finding success in pursuing a strong and sustainable long-term strategy for Brucejack. The discovery of the new Golden Marmot Zone (about 3.5 km from the zones Pretivm is currently developing) indicates a much broader gold resource on the property and a possible extended life at Brucejack. While the results at Golden Marmot are impressive in their own right (72.5 g/t of gold over 53.5m that includes an interval of .5m that contains 6,700 g/t of gold and 3,990 g/t of silver), even more impressive is that the new discovery at Golden Marmot strongly suggests the presence of a well-developed district level system. This gold system appears capable of covering a substantial portion of the Brucejack claims and even extending to adjacent properties. So, the results in this most recent release could have much broader implications for Pretivm. Further, Pretivm is awaiting on additional drill results that could extend the scope of Golden Marmot and other adjacent zones even beyond what has already been announced.
This is all big news and it is no surprise that Pretivm’s share price jumped over 6% the day of its news release. I am looking forward to seeing further drill results and the development of this district scale system.
Why This Discovery is Important for Goldspot Discoveries
Near the end of Pretivm’s news release, there was a paragraph discussing Pretivm’s retention of Goldspot Discoveries to perform prospectivity mapping and target prioritization using AI and Machine Learning. Most of us that closely follow Goldspot were completely unaware that Goldspot had even been previously retained by Pretivm. I was already a fan and shareholder of Pretivm, so I was pretty excited to learn that they were working with my favorite company.
Although its consulting work at Brucejack was previously undisclosed, the news release by Pretivm does have some major implications for Goldspot. For those arguing that Goldspot’s work in discovering New Found Gold’s Queensway claims was merely luck, these results stand in strong refutation. To quote the famed computer pioneer Grace Hopper, “If you do something once, they will call it an accident. If you do it twice, they will call it a coincidence. But do it a third time and you’ve just proven a natural law!” You can call Queensway luck, and you can even call this discovery at Brucejack a coincidence - but folks, we are not far from Goldspot’s model becoming a natural law and a convincing validation of the power of applying AI and Machine Learning to mineral exploration and discovery.
It is also worth noting that Goldspot’s involvement with Pretivm was not merely minor or perfunctory. It was of adequate value and importance to Pretivm that they affirmatively chose to mention Goldspot’s involvement in their big news release. This was Pretivm’s big news release and so including Goldspot is very telling.
So to those of us who follow Goldspot closely, don’t underestimate the importance of these results. It is just one more convincing evidence of the Goldspot thesis and its power to bring transformational changes to mining exploration.
But most of all, a big and hearty congratulations all around to Pretivm as well as its management and shareholders! It has been a long fight getting Brucejack to this point, and it makes these big discoveries all the more sweeter. And this IS a big discovery and hopefully another major indication of a long and successful future for the Brucejack Project.