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CopAur Minerals (TSX-V: CPAU)(OTC: COPAF) CEO Jeremy Yaseniuk on Deploying a Proven Mining Model to Advance Multiple Gold-Silver-Copper Drilling Projects in the USA & Canada
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the CEO of CopAur Minerals — Mr. Jeremy Yaseniuk. Jeremy, how are you today?
Jeremy Yaseniuk: Very good, sir.
Gerardo Del Real: It's great to have you on. I reached out to you and the team for a couple of reasons. One, you have what I believe will be your flagship in Kinsley Mountain, a property that I have followed and done very well with for many, many years. I'm talking over a decade.
And I know that, in speaking to Warren Stanyer, who is the CEO of Nevada Sunrise Gold — Nevada Sunrise, of course, having a 20% interest in the property and CopAur having an 80% interest — he was very impressed by the technical team and the group that you've put together and is excited about drilling later this year.
So I want to get into all of the multiple catalysts in the second half of this year for CopAur because I think there's a lot of value there. But before that, I would love for you to just give us a brief background on your very successful history. You've been busy. You've raised, I believe, close to half a billion dollars careerwise, and you're looking to repeat that success here with CopAur.
Jeremy Yaseniuk: Well, I'll give you a little bit of background, and then we'll dive into where we're sitting with Kinsley Mountain. And this is not an extensive background… this is just our recent history. So you're only as good as your recent projects. And our recent history of projects are that we took a project… before I get into CopAur, I just want to go back and talk about Benchmark Metals…
Gerardo Del Real: Absolutely.
Jeremy Yaseniuk: We took a project there. So Benchmark was a project that had been sitting around for 27 years in various companies with various people. And they were not able to advance that project along because they were missing a good technical team and they were also missing the capital markets guys that could raise money to move these projects along.
So we took a project that had been sitting there for 27 years. And from 2019 to now, we took the project and the company — so the company was only worth approximately C$6 million — we took this project, it's now worth approximately C$200 million, just under C$200 million. And the reason that we were able to generate that kind of shareholder value and so forth is because we just advanced the project.
The gold and silver had been in the ground. It's been in the ground for a billion years. The only difference is that we took our technical team, and our management that is able to raise capital, and advance that project. So that's one. The second one that we did, which was right beside it, is called Thesis Gold.
Again, that's an asset that had been sitting there. It was a known discovery. There was some production on it. It looked interesting. It had been sitting there, again, for approximately 30 years in private hands and in some public companies' hands and a bunch of different owners of it.
We took that project, again, in a very short length of time, from 2020 to now; approximately C$6 million market cap to now approximately C$150 million market cap. And so we have a history of taking projects, like you said, Kinsley Mountain has been around for a long time. I had been eyeing this asset for quite some time myself. My technical team loves it. We think it has the potential of being a Long Canyon. So just north of us, 90 kilometers north of us, is a beautiful project called Long Canyon. It was sold in 2011 to the Barrick-Newmont joint venture — now it's a joint venture — for US$2.3 billion.
And again, that gold and silver had been sitting there in the ground for millions of years. It just took a good technical team and a good capital markets team to be able to advance it. So we think that the project that CopAur has right now is one of those situations where we already have a resource; there's already good indication that there's a lot more there. Our technical team has had a look at it. We think that, by us rapidly advancing this project, we can generate a significant amount of shareholder value.
Gerardo Del Real: I couldn't agree with you more. You currently have a market cap of roughly C$42 million - C$43 million. I want to highlight and emphasize — for people that are listening that may be new to the CopAur story — your working capital right now. What does that look like because you're anchored by a robust treasury.
Jeremy Yaseniuk: So just before we did the transaction with New Placer Dome, to vend that project into CopAur, there was a raise of C$5 million done. And that went to make property payments, it went to do a big geophysical survey on the north end of Kinsley Mountain, it went to do a small drill program on Bolo. So it went to advance a lot of those projects.
Just before we closed the transaction, CopAur also closed a C$5 million financing as well. So we've got a good portion of that money still left. The company, I think, right now has a treasury of about C$4 million left after both of those transactions and the work that's been done. So we have an opportunity to do a decent sized drill program on Bolo and Kinsley this year without even going back to the market.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. And you just started drilling at Williams, if I'm not mistaken, correct?
Jeremy Yaseniuk: That's correct. So again, the Williams property… let's just go back a little bit. Benchmark Metals is up in northern British Columbia. We advanced that project from historical work. And again, a lot of times people try and make things more difficult than they need to be. This is actually a pretty simple story.
The story of Benchmark is simply that when we got to the property, we found that there were many, many meters… most of these drill holes that were drilled back in the 1980s and '90s were sitting there unassayed. All they assayed was the really, really high-grade material. And the rest of it sat in the box unassayed.
So we went and assayed this material for the first time and found that they had completely ignored the bulk tonnage-type material, which is now economic. Back in the 1980s and early '90s when gold was US$300 to US$400 an ounce, if you didn't have half-ounce to one-ounce material — you're not mining it.
And it was too remote back in the day: there was no power, there's no roads, there's no nothing back there. So if it wasn't just jewelry box stuff, they just ignored it. So that's the story of Benchmark. That's how we took Benchmark from being a C$6 million market cap to just under C$200 million is by developing out a large, big bulk tonnage, high-grade deposit on-surface of mineable gold. I think we're now at approximately 3.5 million ounces.
The same thing with Thesis. Thesis was right beside it. We did the same thing with Thesis. We took Thesis from C$6 million to C$150 million from 2020 to now. And again, it was big bulk tonnage and even high-grade material that was missed. Then, of course, we move along to CopAur [Williams]. And this was actually one of the more interesting projects because it showed, in the historical hole that we were looking at, approximately two meters of 15 grams per tonne.
When we went and assayed that entire drill hole, it came back 161 meters of 1.38 grams per tonne. That's a 60-story building of economic grade material that was completely missed. So that is some of the targets. We're drilling right now at CopAur [Williams] to try and prove up a resource there or at least demonstrate the fact that those bulk tonnage and high-grade zones exist.
And we're also drilling for a porphyry target that we've got up there, which is a completely different type of target, which is gold and copper target with, actually, some molybdenum in it as well — a critical element. So that's what we just started. And we should have some results on that in probably somewhere from 8 to 9 weeks from now we're hoping to get some results from that.
Gerardo Del Real: And so just to be clear, we're also expecting assays from Bolo, correct? So we have drilling at Kinsley later this year. We have geophysics, I believe, that are pending for Kinsley. We have the drilling at Williams. And we're waiting on assays from the Bolo project. Is that accurate?
Jeremy Yaseniuk: That's accurate. The drilling from Bolo is going to be a relatively small drill program. And the purpose of that… the drilling at Bolo, by the way, was to try and understand the orientation… we think that there is potential that, historically, where they drilled at Bolo and what they were drilling for at Bolo is not actually even oriented in the way that was historically thought.
So we think we've figured something out there. But anyway, the purpose isn't to get big drill intercepts or anything like that; the purpose is to try and figure out which direction that deposit is running.
Gerardo Del Real: I've been really, really encouraged — pivoting back to Kinsley Mountain here — with the geophysics and exploration work generating new targets that you've done there. What can you tell me about what you've seen, thus far, from the IP survey and some of the geochem work that you've done?
Jeremy Yaseniuk: Well, we hope to put out some news here shortly on that. So the northern part of the property, almost nine kilometers of strike length, or six miles of strike length, has not had any real modern geophysics done on it. And geophysics is really the way to identify the extension of these deposits. And so if we've got a little bit of smoke, that usually means that there's some fire. We'll be reporting on that shortly. I can't really speak to it right now but we will have a news release out very shortly.
And again, if we can prove out what we think is there… it's not far away that Long Canyon, like I said, was sold back when gold was US$1,300 an ounce. It's hovering around US$1,800 to US$1,900 an ounce for quite some time. But Long Canyon was sold for US$2.3 billion.
So the potential upside here is significant. And again, if you remember the companies that we've got in our portfolio — Benchmark (TSX-V: BNCH), Thesis (TSX-V: TAU) — those companies have got C$150 to C$200 million market caps. CopAur has four chances, four projects, that each one of them has similar potential of what we've been able to do in Thesis and Benchmark.
Gerardo Del Real: I think it's worth noting for everyone listening that you've been able to do what you did with Benchmark and Thesis in a bear market. And I actually think that we close out the year in a pretty strong upward trend in the gold space.
I'm excited for the assays from Bolo although I know that's more of a data gathering exercise. I'm looking forward to assays from Williams. And I'm really excited to see what the geophysics turns up in the targets for Kinsley here in the last part of the year. Anything to add to that, Jeremy?
Jeremy Yaseniuk: I think that the market's been beaten up here a little bit in the short-term but I'm always optimistic. We've been able to advance projects when other people haven't been able to. We don't mind fighting a bit of a trend in the market. And so I'm actually thinking that this is an opportunity rather than a challenge.
The company's got lots of money so we don't have to go back to the market in the short-term. We will eventually have to go back to the market but we can spend our treasury and advance our projects.
And I think that the other thing that's kind of exciting, too, that you might want to watch for is that, because we have good treasuries in all of our companies, that right now there's opportunities to make acquisitions when other companies are just beaten up and they're in really bad condition.
So we're able to make acquisitions. And that's actually how we got New Placer Dome is because we had a good treasury, and we’re able to advance projects when most people are not able to. And so there might be an opportunity for us to make some acquisitions here in the next little while as well.
Gerardo Del Real: Well, I love the approach. I'm excited to have you back on. You just added a little potential for M&A there… so that's always great to look forward to! And again, I just want to remind everybody, the difference between a C$42 million market cap and a US$2.3 billion sale of Long Canyon — there's quite a runway there, right, there's a lot of runway between those two. I'll just leave it there.
Jeremy, an absolute pleasure. Thank you so much for your time.
Jeremy Yaseniuk: Thank you. You take care.