Reunion Gold Corp. (TSX.V: RGD) (OTCQX: RGDFF)
Reunion Gold Corp. (TSX.V: RGD) (OTCQX: RGDFF) is a leading gold explorer in the Guiana Shield, South America. In early 2021, the Company announced an exciting new greenfield gold discovery at its Oko West project in Guyana, where, after 22 months of resource definition drilling, the Company has announced an initial Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) containing 2.475 Moz of gold in Indicated resources at 1.84 g/t and 1.762 Moz of gold in inferred resources at 2.02 g/t contained within a pit shell outline. Preliminary metallurgy results performed by the company, consisting of 8 bottle roll tests obtained strong results, averaging just under 90% recoveries on average. The Company is continuing with additional development activities at Oko West, including environmental base line studies and additional metallurgical work relating to the delivery of a PEA by year end 2023. In addition, Reunion Gold is currently exploring several priority targets in the Oko West project area on which the company feels there is good potential to add additional resource ounces. This includes the opportunity to grow the initial mineral resource estimate (MRE) released on June 13, 2023, and to discover additional gold ounces at Oko West outside of the resource area.
The Guiana Shield remains one of the most prospective exploration locations globally for the discovery of world class orogenic gold deposits. The shield, including both Guyana and Surinam, contain large relatively underexplored greenstone belts, from which Reunion Gold expects many more significant gold discoveries could emerge in the coming years.
Oko West Project
Reunion Gold's Oko West Project is a brand-new gold discovery in northwest Guyana located within the historical Oko gold district. Alluvial gold has been mined from the Oko district since the turn of the century, but very little primary gold has been mined or even explored for to the best of the company's knowledge. The project comprises a prospecting license with an area of approximately 44 square kilometers and is 100% held by Reunion's Guyanese subsidiary.
In 2020, Reunion Gold's geochemical survey, trenching and initial 1000 m drill program discovered and confirmed the presence of gold mineralization in this Orogenic gold system. The gold occurs in the eastern edge of the project area, along a 6km long sheared contact between a granitoid intrusion and a meta volcanic-meta sedimentary rock package. The MRE is located within the Kairuni zone, which represents the northern most 1.9 km of the 6 km long contact.
"We are advancing our Oko West project along two tracks. The first is to advance the exploration programs outside of the Kairuni zone, aimed at outlining and discovering additional gold mineralization within our Prospecting License. On this front, I am very excited by the results from the initial Scout RC Geochem drill program that is defining new targets west of our Kairuni zone," Rick Howes, President and CEO of Reunion Gold, stated in a recent news release. In addition to the targets west of the Kairuni zone, the company has also commenced exploration work on the southern ~ 4 km of the same sheared contact that hosts the Kairuni zone MRE. In addition, the company feels that the MRE marks the size of the Kairuni resource at a point in time and that there is good potential to continue to grow the resource. The MRE remains open at depth below the resource pit outline in the block 4 area and also to depth and along strike in the block 5 and 6 areas. In addition to the exploration programs, the second strategic track is to rapidly advance the Kairuni zone along the path to development. To that end the company is moving forward with the engineering and other studies, including more detailed metallurgical studies, that will support the release a PEA on the Kairuni zone by year end 2023 The company feels that the rapid advancement of development of Kairuni zone MRE, while in parallel continuing to explore for additional ounces on the project, is the best path to try and maximize shareholder value in the shortest period of time.
Guyana boasts a long history of mining gold, bauxite, diamonds and manganese. Still, the greenstone belts of the Guiana Shield remain relatively unexplored when compared to the analogous regions of the West African Shield (Birimian), which, according to geological evidence, was once connected to the Guiana Shield, forming a contiguous craton prior to the Mesozoic period.
Despite a historical lack of accessibility and low exploration intensity, several significant large-scale projects have emerged in the Guiana Shield, including Aurora, Oko West, Oko Main, Toroparu and Omai. Guyana is English speaking with a British based parliamentary and legal system and boasts the world's fastest growing economy on the back of significant offshore oil discoveries by Exxon and its partners. It is expected that a significant amount of the revenues from oil production will be invested in improving the infrastructure, education and health care and agriculture within the country.
The World Gold Council, an industry association representing gold producers with hundreds of mining operations in nearly 50 countries around the world, called 2022 the "strongest year for gold demand in over a decade." Annual gold demand jumped 18% YoY due to "colossal central bank purchases, aided by vigorous retail investor buying and slower ETF outflows."
Despite this spike in demand, total annual gold supply increased by just 2% in 2022, halting two years of successive declines but failing to challenge 2018 highs. This supply-demand imbalance could provide a favorable market environment as Reunion Gold continues to advance drilling programs at its 100%-owned Oko West Project.
Successful exploration and the discovery of significant deposits in any given region require immense amounts of local knowledge and experience. This is the principle around which Reunion Gold has built its management team. In total, the company's leadership boasts over 225 years of combined experience in the Guiana Shield.
David Fennell is the Executive Chairman of Reunion Gold, a position he has held since the company's inception in 2003. He has 40 years of experience in the mining industry. He received a law degree from the University of Alberta in 1979 and practiced law until he founded Golden Star Resources Ltd. in 1983. During his term as President and CEO, Golden Star became one of the largest and most successful exploration companies. While at Golden Star, he was instrumental in the discovery and development of the Omai Gold Mine in Guyana and the Gross Rosebel Mine in Suriname. In 1998, Mr. Fennell became Chairman and CEO of Hope Bay Gold Corporation. He held this position through the merger of Hope Bay and Miramar Mining Corporation and remained as Executive Vice-Chairman and Director for the combined entity until its takeover by Newmont Mining Corporation in 2008. Mr. Fennell is currently a member of the board of directors of G Mining Ventures Corp. and Sabina Gold & Silver Corp.
Rick Howes, P.Eng., is the company's President and CEO. He is a seasoned mining executive with over 39 years of experience in the mining industry, most recently as CEO of Dundee Precious Metals. Mr. Howes has extensive operating, technical and project development experience in both underground and open pit mines throughout Canada and internationally. In 2009, Mr. Howes joined Dundee Precious Metals, where, as VP and General Manager, he led the transformation of the Chelopech Mine in Bulgaria to reach world-class levels of performance. He became COO in 2011 and oversaw several significant growth capital development projects, including the expansion of the Chelopech Mine, the upgrade and expansion of the Tsumeb Smelter in Namibia and the development of the greenfield Ada Tepe open pit gold mine in Bulgaria. He was appointed CEO in April 2013, leading Dundee's transformation from a junior gold producer to a multi-asset mid-tier gold producer generating strong free cashflow and solid returns to shareholders. Mr. Howes has been recognized as a visionary leader in mining, organizational innovation and transformation and was recognized as the Outstanding Innovator of 2016 by the International Mining Technology Hall of Fame.
Alain Krushnisky is the CFO of Reunion Gold. He brings to the company years of experience in the mining sector, including 10 years with Cambior Inc. (now IAMGOLD) in capacities such as Vice-President and Controller. Since 2004, Mr. Krushnisky has been doing consulting work for various publicly listed exploration and mining companies. He graduated from the University of Ottawa in 1983 with a bachelor's degree in commerce and is a Chartered Professional Accountant.
Justin van der Toorn is the company's VP Exploration. He is an exploration geologist with 18 years' experience in the minerals industry, leading and managing exploration teams from grassroots activities through to discovery and resource definition drilling. Mr. van der Toorn's previous experience has been in a range of commodity and deposit styles, including extensive work in Carlin-style gold, low- and high-sulphidation epithermal, porphyry and orogenic gold systems. He holds an MSci degree in Geological Sciences from the Royal School of Mines, Imperial College London. He is registered as a Chartered Geologist (CGeol) of the Geological Society, and a European Geologist (EurGeol) by the European Federation of Geologists.
Doug Flegg is the company's business Development advisor. Doug has over 35 years' experience in mining and mining finance with senior positions in research, portfolio management and global equity sales. Previously, Mr. Flegg was Managing Director Global Mining Sales with BMO Capital Markets where he was involved in raising $35 billion in over 200 corporate financings. Since 2016 he has been providing business development, strategic, and financing advice to corporate mining clients. Mr. Flegg also has a B.Sc. in Geology, work experience as a geologist and an MBA from Queens University.