General Base Metals
Aguila American Gold (TSX-V: AGL) CEO Mark Saxon on New Copper Project in Arizona
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the president and CEO of Aguila American Gold, Mr. Mark Saxon. Mark, it should be called Aguila American Gold and Copper, it looks like. How are you?
Mark Saxon: Good. Good comment, Gerardo. Good afternoon. Great to talk to you. And thanks for your time today.
Gerardo Del Real: Oh, listen, it's great to have you back on. You announced this morning the acquisition of the Cora Copper Project in Southern Arizona, 100% ownership. The market reacted very, very favorably. The stock was up some 47%. We've talked at length in the past about you being on the M & A trail, and you looking over hundreds of projects. Why Cora?
Mark Saxon: Thanks very much Gerardo and yes, you're correct. We were out this morning and well-received, and that's always great to see the people paying attention to the stock even for Aguila, which has been, let's call it a market cap, a very small market cap. So we had plenty of room to move. So I guess there's a range of parts to that question. So let's break it down, I suppose.
So first of all, a pivot from gold into a copper focus, and really we're quite happy to be in either metal, but I guess we've been seeing that the fundamentals for copper are just stunningly good. We're looking both on the demand side with the electrification of everything is pulling through an enormous amount of metal into demand. And there's some fairly substantial wobbles coming through, I guess, from the supply side, from South American countries that are looking at nationalization and looking at, I guess, increasing revenues back to governments. And no shock, that's understandable, but it creates a great opportunity for copper in, let's say it's Australia and US and Canada as well.
So I guess with that thinking, we took a bit of a step back and we said, "All right, where do we really want to be? Where do we really want to be focused for major copper systems, and in good quality jurisdictions where we can get work done?" And so we didn't just go back to the same prospects and talk to existing owners. We took a clean slate approach and did some really good project generation. And we identified the real clear trends where we wanted to be working, and Cora sits within one of those trends. And so we then went into some historic data held by the Arizona Geological Survey and progressively worked through ideas and thoughts, and Cora really stood out as being a exceptional property.
Gerardo Del Real: You mentioned the jurisdiction. Obviously Arizona is a great jurisdiction to explore in. This also happens to be one of the world's premier copper-producing regions. Is this the only asset that you're looking at? Or are you still looking in this part of the country?
Mark Saxon: No, certainly not. We're not limited by this one and really, I guess the great opportunity here is that what we've done is we've gone out and we've put the pegs in the ground on something that hadn't been claimed for a very long time. So the drilling that we're talking about that was press released today, so one of the highlights there, 220 meters at 0.29 copper below shallow cover, that was drilled in the 1950s. Some exploration work was done in the district over '60s and '70s and then no follow up since 1960. So it sat there probably without ownership for almost all of that period and no one's been doing any work.
So what we've done is get back into archives and take a look at projects of that nature. I think that's exceptionally good, but there's many drill prospects out there from a generation ago that really haven't been followed up because the grade was a bit lower than some of the other areas or the companies that found them was working multiple projects. So Miami Copper Co., for example, and Asarco, some of the biggest companies in the world at the time were doing some of this work. And so they were juggling 10, 20 different prospects. And so these projects are now the opportunity to really get back and invest in modern technologies and really find something of note. But yeah looking at similar kinds of thinking throughout the Western US and elsewhere as well to build up a really strong portfolio.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. And I was going to ask, how is the infrastructure? As far as power and access, I've got to believe if it's in Arizona, it's probably pretty darn good. Right?
Mark Saxon: Yeah, absolutely. There's railway lines. There's roads. There's a small copper mine quite a close by called North Star, and North Star has good infrastructure close to it or nearby really, so we're not lacking anything. And so if you take a look at the map then, we're in the middle of all the giants, I suppose, in terms of porphyry copper deposits, and so some developed, some undeveloped. And so that means we've got every single skill and service that we need within 30, 40 kilometers, I'd say.
Gerardo Del Real: When do you anticipate commencing the exploration process?
Mark Saxon: We're working towards that now. We've got the people identified, which has been extremely hard to put together a team at the moment, as it's been busy. But we've got the team identified now and that'll be measured in weeks, not months, so we're pretty good to go. By the look of it, it's been a pretty hot period over there at the moment and so getting people out immediately, let's give them a little bit of a break, but within a couple of weeks I think we'll be set.
Gerardo Del Real: Fantastic. Mark, congrats on a quality acquisition. You still have a tiny market cap of just over CA$6 million, a lot, a lot of runway. But this is a big step forward, so congratulations. Anything else to add to that?
Mark Saxon: No. That's great, Gerardo. We look forward to developing some real news flow and introducing a whole range of other projects.
Gerardo Del Real: I look forward to visiting the project the next time you're out. I know that you're currently under a five-day lockdown, if I'm not mistaken?
Mark Saxon: Another five days, yes. So we just sort of suck it up and get on with it and look out the windows for the moment.
Gerardo Del Real: All right. Well, there's plenty to do. Thanks a lot, Mark.
Mark Saxon: Thanks, Gerardo. Chat soon. Bye.
Gerardo Del Real: Bye now.Click here to see more from Aguila Copper Corp.