Big Ridge Gold Corp. [BRAU-TSXV] on Wednesday announced the closing of a $5 million private placement and a strategic investment by financier Michael Gentile.
News that the offering has closed sent Big Ridge shares up 28% or $0.085 to 39 cents on active volume of 1.32 million. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of 39 cents and $0.09.
The brokered private placement consisted of 24.4 million flow-through units priced at 20.5 cents per unit. Net proceeds of the offering will be used to fund exploration at the past-producing Hope Brook Gold project in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Each unit consists of one flow-through common share of Big Ridge and one common share purchase warrant, each of which is exercisable into one common share of the company at 18 cents per share for two years following the closing date.
In conjunction with the offering, the company said Michael Gentile has acquired 9.15 million units of Big Ridge, leaving him with approximately 19.9% of the issued and outstanding shares of the company. Gentile is a former money manager and a strategic investor in the junior mining sector.
He is currently a strategic advisor to Arizona Metals Corp. [AMC-TSXV], and a director of Northern Superior Resources Inc. [SUP-TSXV], Roscan Gold Corp. [ROSI-TSXV], Radisson Mining Resources Inc. [RDS-TSXV, RMRDF-OTC], and Solstice Gold Corp. [SGC-TSXV].
Big Ridge Gold is an exploration and development company with a portfolio that includes a 100% interest in the highly prospective Oxford Gold Project in Manitoba, a 100% interest in the Destiny Gold project in Quebec where Clarity Gold Corp. [CSE-CLAR] is earning up to a 100% interest. The company is also engaged in exploration in the Beardmore-Geraldton gold belt in Ontario.
Big Ridge is now the operator of the Hope Brook Gold project, the site of a former gold mine that produced 752,163 ounces of gold between 1987 and 1997.
The company recently strengthened its team ahead of a summer exploration program at Hope Brook. The additions include Dr. Laurie Curtis, and Dr. Bill Pearson, who have joined the Big Ridge advisory team. Director Nick Tintor has been named Chairman of the board and Jeff Burke is now Project Manager for Hope Brook Gold.
“The addition of Jeff Burke, Laurie Curtis and Bill Pearson brings significant experience and knowledge of the Hope Brook Gold Project and they will be an integral part of the exploration program moving forward,’’ said Big Ridge President and CEO Mike Bandrowski.
Big Ridge is earning up to an 80% interest in the advanced stage Hope Brook project which consists of 1,056 mineral claims, covering 26,400 hectares. The property hosts the Hope Brook deposit which consists of the Mine Zone and 240 Zone.
According to a NI-43-101-compliant resource estimate, Hope Brook contains an indicated resource of 844,000 ounces of gold as well as 110,000 ounces in the inferred category. The property also hosts a 28-person camp, existing tailings storage capacity, a 1,100-metre airstrip and is connected to grid power.