Aldebaran advances on Argentina copper update

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Aldebaran Resources Inc. [ALDE-TSXV] shares advanced Monday after the company said it has completed the US$30 million in expenditures required to earn a 60% in the Altar copper-gold project in Argentina pursuant to a joint venture agreement with Sibanye-Stillwater [SBSW-NYSE, SSW-JSE]

Aldebaran shares rallied on the news, rising 4.4% or $0.04 to 95 cents. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of $1.04 and 61 cents.

“Altar represents one of the largest undeveloped copper projects in the world, and we are excited to continue to unlock its potential to help supply necessary copper resources to fuel the worldwide green energy revolution,’’ said Aldebaran CEO John Black.  “When we picked up this project in 2018, we understood that it had immense potential, however, it has exceeded our expectations on several fronts,’’ he said.

Aldebaran said it has notified Sibanye-Stillwater that it plans to acquire an additional 20% in Altar by exercising a second option to spend US$25 million over three years, raising its stake to 80%, leaving Sibanye-Stillwater with the remaining 20%. As of June, 30, 2023, Aldebaran said it has spent US$38 million on the project.

Aldebaran is a Canadian exploration company led by former management of Antares Minerals Inc. and current management of Regulus Resources Inc. [REG-TSXV]. Aldebaran was spun out of Regulus in 2018. The management team has a proven track record with Antares, drilling out the giant Haquira-copper-molybdenum-gold deposit in Peru, which they sold to First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM-TSX) in 2010 for approximately $650 million.

Aldebaran also acquired the Rio Grande copper-gold project in Salta Province, Argentina from Regulus, along with several other early-stage projects in Argentina.

In March, 2021, the company announced an updated mineral resource estimate for Altar.

The resource estimate was defined by three distinct deposits, Altar Central, Altar East and QDM Gold. The QDM Gold deposit is categorized as a separate resource as it is located approximately 3.0 kilometres west from Altar Central and is primarily a gold-silver deposit.

Measured and indicated resources at Altar Central and Altar East stand 1,198.2 million tonnes, grading 0.43% copper, 0.09 g/t gold and 1.00 g/t silver.  On top of that is an inferred resource of 189.2 million tonnes of grade 0.42% copper, 0.06 g/t gold and 0.80 g/t silver.

QDM gold contains a measured and indicated resource of 20 million tonnes, grading 0.78 g/t gold, 3.62 g/t silver and 0.06% copper. On top of that is an inferred resource of 1.2 million tonnes, grading 0.58 g/t gold, 5.34 g/t silver and 0.03% copper.

Altara forms part of a cluster of world-class porphyry copper deposits which includes Los Pelambres (Antofagasta Minerals), El Pachon (Glencore) and Los Azules (McEwen Mining Inc. [MUX-TSX, NYSE]).

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