With a promising gold project in Nicaragua and a strong management team, Oro Verde Ltd, is beginning to emerge on the radar of the investment community, both locally and in North America. Since focusing its attention on Central America in late 2014, Oro Verde has been diligently going about its business, and achieving its stated objectives.
At a weak point in the gold cycle, Oro Verde opportunistically got its hands on the advanced Topacio gold project in Nicaragua, which contains a 340,000 oz inferred gold resource, estimated under Canada’s equivalent of JORC standards (NI 43-101). The company signed an attractive option agreement in February 2015 whereby it can acquire 100% of the project by spending just US$2 million on exploration over three years and then exercising the option by payment of US$1.5 million to the local vendor, along with a 2% royalty.
Oro Verde sees even greater potential for Topacio. The resource is located within less than 5% of the 93sq km area of the granted concession, with the remainder significantly under-explored. The gold is found within high grade quartz veins, many outcropping at surface, forming part of a low sulphidation epithermal system with similarities to the successful Pajingo (recently sold by Evolution) and Cracow (Evolution) gold deposits in Queensland and the rich Gosowong deposit (Newcrest) in Indonesia.
Reconnaissance exploration by Oro Verde has confirmed that the Topacio epithermal system has a large footprint, comparable with the mines mentioned above. During 2015, Oro Verde demonstrated the size potential of Topacio by identifying new targets outside the existing resource. Mapping and rock chip sampling highlighted numerous high grade gold targets with results including 92.9g/t gold at the Dispute vein, 52.4g/t at the Topacio NE Extension and 23.8g/t gold at the West Mico vein. To date, 35km of quartz veins have been mapped on the concession but only four km of veins are included in the existing resource, leaving plenty of scope for an upgrade to the resource inventory.
Enter Newcrest. In late 2015, the Australian gold giant was attracted by Oro Verde’s exploration potential and success at Topacio, signing a US$7.9 million farm-in agreement to earn up to 75% of the Topacio project.
Newcrest knows first-hand how successful epithermal gold deposits can be with its involvement in both the Gosowong and Cracow mines.
Newcrest has signed a US$7.9 million farm-in agreement to earn up to 75% of the Topacio project.
With the aim of identifying a “Newcrest-sized” multimillion ounce gold resource, the partners commenced a measured exploration program in January 2016, to cover the entire concession. Managed by Oro Verde’s experienced team, detailed geological mapping focusing on vein textures, combined with multielement soil geochemistry and an airborne geophysical survey, have led to generation of numerous new targets, in addition to those identified by Oro Verde in the previous year.
“With the financial backing and technical expertise of Newcrest, we have undertaken an extensive high quality, preparatory exploration program during 2016, accelerating our understanding of the gold system to the point where we are now prioritising targets for drill testing in early 2017,” Oro Verde managing director, Trevor Woolfe said.
After a recent placement enticed investors from both Australia and North America, Oro Verde is now well positioned to push forward with drilling to test its priority targets and expand the high grade Topacio gold resource towards its stated multi-million ounce objective.