General Base Metals
Vizsla Copper (TSX-V: VCU)(OTC: VCUFF) CEO Chris Donaldson on Transformational Acquisition Positioning for Copper Bull Market
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Digest Publishing. Joining me today is the CEO of Vizsla Copper, Mr. Chris Donaldson. Chris, how are you?
Chris Donaldson: I'm good, how are you?
Gerardo Del Real: Great. We're here at the 2022 Beaver Creek Precious Metals Summit, what's your take so far?
Chris Donaldson: Well it's busy, I think it's the most people they've had in a number of years, and obviously good to see people in person and not over Zoom calls.
Gerardo Del Real: I said Vizsla Copper and I think the name Vizsla is most closely associated with silver. That was a great success story and still is running frankly, that I missed right, I'll be honest I thought the widths were going to be not what we needed to mine. And look, the team blew it out the park, right? It's one of the best performing silver stocks of the last several years. So when you reached out about Vizsla Copper and I looked at the market cap and I looked at the group behind it and I saw that it was the same group and I saw that you were involved, I said let's have a conversation. So this is why we're having a conversation.
Chris Donaldson: Oh yeah. Fantastic. And Vizsla Silver just keeps hitting down of their project in Mexico and at Panuco there. And they had some copper assets in BC that they weren't doing much with, so wanted to monetize that. So there was a spin out I guess about 18 months ago and we're doing some exploration work on those properties. But really we've been looking for a bigger project for a better part of a year to sink into. And our corporate development team led by Keith Bodnarchuk was able to make a transaction last week and we acquired the Woodjam Project in Central BC just outside of Williams Lake, so Mount Polley mine. So yeah, fantastic and transformational really for the company.
Gerardo Del Real: It's a huge project with huge exploration upside. Tell me a little bit more about that.
Chris Donaldson: Yeah, no, the project's been around for quite a while. Unfortunately, the group that we acquired it from probably didn't get it out in the public and talk about what they were doing enough. And obviously there's been some challenges in the markets and they were under capitalized. But there's been a lot of drilling on the project and some recent drilling, and we saw one drill hole with a hundred plus meters at 2.5% gold and 0.5% copper. So we got pretty excited about that. Transaction itself, we were able to acquire 35% of it effectively once the whole transaction takes place so the consolidated Woodjam shareholders will own 65. But we got that for under $10 million. And so maybe this pull back in the market really helped us acquire a fantastic project that we didn't think we would be able to get.
Gerardo Del Real: You mentioned the prior owner of being under capitalized, and I think that's such an important point to make with your team and the capital group behind you.
Chris Donaldson: Yeah, Inventa Capital's done a very good job of assembling a team. We have a number of companies in the basket, but one of the real strengths is their ability to raise money. Craig Parry and Mike Konnert have investors who will follow them. They've had such success with NextGen and IsoEnergy and Vizsla Silver that guys kind of say, "Okay, what are they doing? And I'll put some money behind it." So we're going to have to do a little raise after the transaction. I think we'll have three and a half billion dollars, but we'll likely go to the market once it finalizes over the next few months. But yeah, we have ability to access capital, which is tough in these markets, and a fantastic team to advance the projects we have.
Gerardo Del Real: What's the market cap at right now?
Chris Donaldson: Oh geez...
Gerardo Del Real: Ballpark it for me.
Chris Donaldson: It's probably $8 million or $10 million. So very, very cheap.
Gerardo Del Real: Where's Vizsla Silver? Ballpark it.
Chris Donaldson: Well they're couple hundred million. Couple hundred million, and I think they peaked last year over $300 million. And that's going to continue to grow and grow. And that's another story on that. So in terms of Vizsla Copper, we're going to hit the ground running. There's a lot of information that we're mapping and digitizing right now, historical drilling and some of the more recent information. So we're trying to get a better understanding of the deposit. We're reinterpreting maybe the way they looked at it previously, but it's a prolific, porphyry copper district and in BC, which as we seeing troubles in other copper producing areas, BC is certainly becoming a focus right now for copper production.
Gerardo Del Real: How do you feel about copper here in the midterm?
Chris Donaldson: In the midterm, I come from my previous 10 years with a company called Western Copper and Gold and...
Gerardo Del Real: Another massive project.
Chris Donaldson: Massive project, porphyry project up in the Yukon. So I've been on the copper bull train for a long, long time. And everybody has this one graph for Wood Mackenzie talking about the supply and the demand. And for years and years we were talking about it, well, that deficit is finally here.
Gerardo Del Real: Right.
Chris Donaldson: We're having our challenges right now with the world economy and on the macro side, but it's not sustainable. You need to achieve any fraction of the goals that the world has for electrification. We need new projects and we need a lot of new projects. So I'm very bullish on copper. I think even if the global macro falls down, what happens is there'll be infrastructure projects, which will kickstart the copper run as well. And what are we at? Mid $3...
Gerardo Del Real: $3.60.
Chris Donaldson: 2 years ago I would've begged for that.
Gerardo Del Real: Sure.
Chris Donaldson: So we haven't hit the highs of four yet, but it won't be surprising to me to do four, five, six, up to 10 over the next five, 10 years.
Gerardo Del Real: And I think the word that you used to describe it was perfect. People need, the world needs copper. You can want gold, you can want a lot of things. I love gold.
Chris Donaldson: So do I.
Gerardo Del Real: We need copper.
Chris Donaldson: Yeah.
Gerardo Del Real: We need copper.
Chris Donaldson: For everything. Everything with electrification has an element of copper on it. You've seen the stats. So it's multiples of copper needed in electric vehicles, which get a lot of the headlines, but it's also the daily use for any kind of building and housing and so forth. So yeah, certainly bullish on that and happy to have a more advanced stage project. We'll look to restate the resource that's on it. It's already added about 2 billion tonnes of copper and a million pounds of gold. So it's already sizable, but we want to maybe focus in on some of the high grade zones.
Gerardo Del Real: That’s a heck of a head start, 2 billion pounds of copper, million ounces of gold, roughly for how much? $8 million?
Chris Donaldson: Just under 10. Yeah.
Gerardo Del Real: Pretty good deal. Chris, thank you so much.
Chris Donaldson: Hey, appreciate your time. Thanks.
Gerardo Del Real: Thank you.Click here to see more from Vizsla Copper