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Aguila Copper Corp. (TSX-V: AGL)(OTCQB: AGLAF) CEO Mark Saxon on Acquiring Multiple Copper-Zinc-Gold Resources in the Sherridon District, Manitoba
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the CEO of Aguila Copper Corporation, Mr. Mark Saxon. Mark, heck of a day in the market today. How are you?
Mark Saxon: Gerardo, yes. Great to talk and great to see the market's up again. And I think we're having the next round of post-COVID bounce, which is great to see, and for Aguila in particular. Thanks.
Gerardo Del Real: Well, let's talk Aguila. You wasted no time, right after the name change to Aguila Copper, acquiring yourself a copper-zinc-gold, I mean, I shouldn't say resource, resources in Manitoba. I want you to provide the context there. The market clearly likes the fact that you've signed a binding option agreement. Can you provide some context there?
Mark Saxon: Yeah, most certainly, Gerardo. And I guess you know we've been looking for projects for quite a long time now and perhaps even 12 months. And so the first half of last year, we started the process and the market, I guess, was a little bit hot at that stage. And we looked at plenty of deals and looked at lots of good ideas, but we really wanted something with a strong technical upside. We wanted something with a development upside, let's say, where we're sitting in a jurisdiction where things really can develop in a sensible time frame.
So Aguila, and you've noticed the name change there to Aguila Copper now and reflecting what we're doing in the future. I guess the history of Aguila was about gold, and that was about gold in South America, where it really began. But I guess my passion and my recent history has been in battery metals and energy transition metals. And as you know, I've been involved with some partners on great rare earth discoveries in graphite and lithium. And so it really felt time to come into copper now, because the energy transition that's happening around us is not going to happen without copper. So that's been our near-term focus and that's really delivered some really exciting projects, both in the US and Canada.
Gerardo Del Real: Let's talk about the project that you just signed the option agreement on. Obviously there's some history there. There's an all-weather, 78-kilometer road. There is power. There's a community that has experience with mining. It seems like it checks a lot of boxes, Mark.
Mark Saxon: Yeah, it really does, Gerardo. And I guess when we've been looking for projects, we were looking for the deposit styles that turn into mines. And when you think about that, there's one style called volcanic-hosted massive sulfide deposits. And so we really like those deposits because as you say, they're copper, they're zinc, they're gold, they're silver. They're high grades. They support underground mining, fairly low environmental impact and footprints because of that.
And so we began to accumulate ideas on VHMS deposits across North America. And in that process there's obviously two very major camps that sit within Manitoba and overlap into Saskatchewan, which is, it's a belt of rocks that we call the Trans-Hudson orogeny, and that's a north-south belt. It's bit like the Andes, I guess, or the Himalayas, but an old version of that. And so sitting in that belt, we've got the Flin Flon camp and we've got the Snow Lake camp, which are major mining districts. Between them and between the region, there's more than 60 deposits. There's more than a hundred years of mining, so you know you're in the right kind of jurisdiction of where you want to be in.
So we looked at that jurisdiction and sitting out in between those big camps is another camp called the Sherridon District. And Sherridon has had a pretty good history of work. It's had some major mining. However, when we did the accumulation of data, we saw, okay, there's been no press releases from this district for about 10 years. And that was a bit of a head scratcher when you've got great deposits and historic mines. Why has it been forgotten? And so we dug into that history and we managed to put back together the ownership and start that process with the private owner, and managed to do a really great deal and acquire that district really in its entirety.
Gerardo Del Real: This is just a binding option agreement. I understand there's still some due diligence to be had, so it's important that we qualify that aspect of the deal and the negotiations. But I also know that you're never one to just option a project just to be busy. Right? I know you look through hundreds of these things before you can actually identify one or two that are worth pursuing. What was it about this project in particular that really stuck out to you?
Mark Saxon: You know, I guess the experience that we've had in other jurisdictions has taught us that to be in a district where you really can develop a mine is important. And so we're certainly in that in Manitoba. Manitoba is a great mining jurisdiction, lots of active mines. And we cross over into Saskatchewan as well and we see the same thing of lots of mine development. The thing that really caught our eye, I suppose, in this asset and as you say, we do have due diligence to do. However, we have certainly run through the big list of boxes and we've ticked most of them. There's only a few left to tick and it was time to go public with the transaction, I guess, because of it.
So when you look at the past mining in the district, there's been one major mine and that's in two different, separate ore bodies, and that's called Sherritt Gordon, which was the mining company that mined it. And so that was production of 7.7 million tonnes, an average grade of about 2.5 copper, 2.8 zinc about half a gram of gold and about 30 g/t of silver. So that was in two separate ore bodies, and the area in between those two ore bodies really hasn't been explored. And that mine was closed in 1955, and you can only imagine the difference in processing technologies, in discovery technologies, in cutoff grades over that period.
So going back and looking at that obviously is an amazing opportunity, but then these VHMS deposits, they occur in camps. And so there's a whole range of other targets, some of which have been drilled and some of which are resources across the district. And so we're now looking at each of those and finding ways to bring those forward as well into the company. And subject to due diligence, I think it's an amazingly good package that, better than what we hope to get, I guess, when we're out there looking for ideas.
Gerardo Del Real: Advanced stage, great infrastructure, you understand the deposit type. It seems like a no brainer on the surface. The market certainly has a responded well. Congratulations! I suspect you're still looking, Mark, as always?
Mark Saxon: Thanks, Gerardo. Yes. We're still looking. We've got someone sitting at the conference now in Reno looking at ideas. And yeah, we're always out there and we're putting together a really strong portfolio in the company now and the coming year looks really strong.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. Thank you for the update. Looking forward to having you back on to provide further updates on this and, obviously, other projects that you're looking at. Thank you again.
Mark Saxon: Thanks Gerardo. Chat soon.Click here to see more from Aguila Copper Corp.