Geopacific Resources Releases Quarterly Report

by PNG Business News - July 31, 2022

Photo credit: Geopacific Resources

Geopacific Resources Limited is pleased to provide an update on its activities and cashflow for the quarter ended 30 June 2022.


  • Trading recommenced on the ASX on 31 May 2022 following the implementation of an intensive business transformation program in response to the previously identified material capital cost increases at the Woodlark Gold Project (‘Woodlark’ or ‘the Project’). 
  • The Company advanced a number of concurrent work programs to progress the Project and optimise its future development pathway including: 
  1. an ongoing drill campaign aimed at growing the existing Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve; 
  2. commencing studies to assess the implications of the potential Mineral Resource growth on the design and economics of a future project development; and  
  3. a Strategic Review to assess alternative options to maximise shareholder value, including potential corporate and asset-level transactions. 
  • Positive results were received from the ongoing drilling campaign at the Project, highlighting upside potential within the existing pit shells and the broader exploration potential across the Mining Lease. 
  • Assays were received from: 
  1. 25 grade control holes, including several significant high-grade intercepts (all within 60 metres of surface); and  
  2. 46 resource extension holes from Kulumadau, Kulumadau East (new zone) and Busai which reinforced the potential for pit extension. 
  • Geopacific remains committed to engagement with the local communities on Woodlark Island and activity on the village relocation works and other important community initiatives continued. 
  • The Company held $20.6m of cash at 30 June 2022, no debt and $21m materials cost of Project long lead equipment assets, which are potentially available for sale.
Post Quarter End 
  • The process of board renewal was completed, with Ian Murray and Colin Gilligan resigning as directors and Mike Brook, Richard Clayton and Hansjoerg Plaggemars appointed as directors on 7 July 2022. 
  • Encouraging results returned from drilling at Talpos and Watou, including the identification of a new mineralised zone at Talpos.
Chief Executive Officer, Tim Richards commented “Along with completing the intensive commercial and corporate program to achieve reinstatement of ASX trading by 31 May 2022, we continued to progress our exploration and project review work streams. Our focus remains on maximising the value of the Project. The grade control drilling campaign has increased our understanding of the geology that exists within the existing pit shells. The broader resource extension drilling campaign continues to identify encouraging prospective targets outside the current pits, such as Talpos and Kulumadau East, which demonstrate the exploration potential that exists on Woodlark Island. With a second drill rig now mobilised to site, exploration activity will continue to provide valuable knowledge for our studies aimed at re-assessing the Project design and seeking to identify and capitalise on targeted economies of scale.”
Full press release can be found HERE

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PNG Business News - July 08, 2021

Geopacific Receives K257.5M Funding

Geopacific Resources Ltd has received funding of AU$100 million (K257.5 million) for the construction of its gold and silver mine on Woodlark Island in Milne Bay, Papua New Guinea. Chairman Ian Clyne stated that the money will come from a loan facility. He expressed gratitude to the Mineral Resources Authority for assisting in the successful development of the Woodlark Island gold mine. He said that it allowed Geopacific Resources to obtain "complete finance" to begin development, with the goal of pouring the first gold next year. According to Clyne, the Kula Gold legacy of huge losses for international investors meant that there was less demand for the Woodlark Project in particular. Despite substantial marketing efforts to banks and speciality industry lenders, loan demand remained severely restricted. The international worry about PNG's political danger was a key issue. The effective and timely implementation of an agreement, according to Clyne, is a key confidence builder for foreign investors. “The professionalism of the PNG Government teams was a major factor,” he said. “This was an extremely difficult project to get funded, especially given the PNG/BSP perspective of historic international investor and lender appetite.” Jerry Garry, MRA's managing director, praised Geopacific for securing finance for the project's development. This, he added, indicated that investors have faith in the country's extractive industry. Following MRA's intervention, Garry noticed that Geopacific Resources had upgraded its dwelling plans for the relocation exercise. “To raise AU$140 million (K54.3mil) in new equity in Dec/Jan and to recently close out the AU$100 million (K257.7mil) debt facility was the result of a massive amount of extremely professional work by Tim Richards (Geopacific Resources Ltd chief executive officer) and his team and with the board’s backing, in building international financial market’s confidence,” Garry said.   Reference: Pacific Mining Watch. “Geopacific secures K257 million for Gold and Silver mine project in PNG”.


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Woodlark Gold Project Delayed

Photo credit: Geopacific Resources The developer stated that work on the Woodlark Gold Project is now delayed and behind schedule. In an update, Geopacific Resources Limited reported that the company has decided to postpone the project until Q1/Q2 2022. The impact of unseasonal inclement weather, according to the firm, has resulted in a short-term worsening in ground conditions, reducing the capacity to undertake the civil works program in preparation for the CIL plant's construction. COVID-19 cases have continued to climb across Papua New Guinea, with a flow-on impact to the rest of the country, due to a lack of project construction on the island at the level necessary to guarantee work streams were performed cost effectively and efficiently. Geopacific remains dedicated to assisting in the implementation of this essential health program as quickly as feasible. The corporation has also opted to revisit the original wharf design and consider a potential improvement of the current wharf facilities in order to minimize costs and construction complexity while increasing community involvement in the project. According to the firm, design and engineering work for the offshore component of the tailings pipeline is behind schedule, which is delaying the issuance of construction tenders required to finalize capital estimates. Chief executive officer, Tim Richards said, “Whilst the delays in the Project are disappointing, they should not take away from the quality of the underlying asset base. Woodlark is a compelling project, with a goal of producing over 1 million ounces of gold at an all-in sustaining cost of A$1,239 per ounce during the asset's life. “We are doing everything we can to minimise the impact of the delays on the Project schedule, and post the completion of the Project review we will update the market to the extent of the impacts on the Project Execution Plan. “Importantly, we continue to progress exploration, with these activities continuing. There remains significant exploration potential at the Project, which we expect will result in additional value creation at Woodlark.”   Reference: Post-Courier (17 November 2021). “Woodlark Gold Project Faces Delay”.


PNG Business News - January 17, 2022

Geopacific Resources Appoints Andrew Bantock as Chairman

Photo credit: Geopacific Resources The Board of Geopacific Resources Limited is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Andrew Bantock as Chairman and director of Geopacific, and the retirement of Mr. Ian Clyne as Chairman and director of the Company. Mr. Bantock has significant experience leading listed and private businesses, both in Australia and offshore, with an acknowledged track record in corporate finance and commercial leadership. Throughout his career, Mr. Bantock has established a track record for successfully building and improving businesses’ operations and financial structures, developing and communicating their vision and strategy and building and leading high performing teams. Mr. Bantock will work with Geopacific’s Management, the Board and the Company’s consultants to assess the optimal operational model, development plan and funding requirements for the Woodlark Gold Project under the review announced to the market on 15 December 2021, as well as the long-term strategy for the Company. Geopacific Nomination and Remuneration Committee Chair, Mr. Ian Murray said: “Andrew brings a fresh perspective, relevant expertise and the ability to thoroughly assess the Company’s requirements and path forward. His proven leadership, financial and business improvement skills will be invaluable both for the Company’s short-term imperatives and the implementation of its long-term strategy. On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Mr. Ian Clyne for his dedicated service as Chairman of Geopacific and the achievements during his tenure. We wish Ian all the best in his future endeavours. ” Mr. Bantock said: “It is an important time for Geopacific and I look forward to applying my experience and skills, with the support of the executive management and Board of Geopacific and its consultants, to assess, develop and implement the path forward for the Company. With A$50.9 million of unrestricted net cash reserves and no debt at 31 December 2021, the Company is positioned with a number of strategic options to grow shareholder value”. Background information regarding Mr. Bantock and key terms of appointment Mr. Bantock’s role will be as Non-Executive Chairman of Geopacific, however he has committed in the short-term to a greater involvement in the oversight of the review workstreams currently underway at the Company. Details of the material terms of the arrangements for the provision of Mr. Bantock’s services are set out in an appendix to this announcement. After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant with a leading global firm, working in Australia and the UK, Mr. Bantock commenced his commercial career with ASX/NZSE listed GRD Group, owner of New Zealand’s largest gold producer, Macraes Mining (later Oceana Gold), and well-known resource project design and construction engineer, GRD Minproc. Mr. Bantock later become Finance Director of GRD, also serving six years as a Non- Executive Director of Western Australia’s water utility, Water Corporation, where he chaired the Audit and Compliance Committee. Mr. Bantock subsequently helped to establish and co-lead an ASX listed exploration group, in various roles, including as founding Executive Chairman of Chalice Gold Mines Ltd and founding Managing Director of Liontown Resources Ltd, before being recruited back to a senior finance role, as CFO of Glencore’s Australian nickel business. Mr Bantock is currently a Senior Managing Director of FTI Consulting (FTI Consulting), an independent global business advisory firm where he leads the Perth Business Transformation practice and co-leads the national mining advisory practice, assisting clients to develop and implement business improvement and growth strategies, supported by detailed business case analysis, financing strategies and hands-on execution. Andrew is also Chairman of Elevate Uranium Limited (ASX: EL8). FTI Consulting is providing the services of Mr. Bantock as director and non-executive Chairman of Geopacific under a consultancy agreement. Separately, FTI Consulting has been engaged to assist the Company and work alongside the existing independent technical advisors appointed by the Company over the next three months (subject to any extension) to perform a detailed diagnostic review, make recommendations to the Board on the strategy for the Company and assist with the implementation of key action items, whether through the provision of advice or by providing senior management support and resources. This arrangement has been agreed on normal ‘arms length’ terms and includes appropriate conflict measures.   Article courtesy of Geopacific Resources

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