Kinross Gold closing in on Great Bear resource estimate

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Great Bear Royalties Corp [GBRR-TSXV] on Friday announced changes to the composition of its board of directors and senior management team. The company also released an update on the Great Bear gold project in northwest Ontario, which was acquired in February, 2022, by Kinross Gold Corp. (K-TSX, KGC-NYSE) via the $1.8 billion acquisition of Great Bear Resources Ltd. [GBR-TSXV].

Great Bear’s principal asset is a 2.0% net smelter royalty interest in the Great Bear project, which is located in the Red Lake gold mining district. In a press release Friday, Great Bear said Kinross has disclosed plans to declare an initial inferred resource estimate on the Great Bear project as part of its 2022 year-end results and to launch a pre-feasibility study in 2023.

Kinross is expected to spend $75 million on the project this year, money that will be used to fund critical field work, including metallurgy, hydrology, geotechnical drilling and test work, plus permitting baseline studies. Utilizing eight drill rigs, Kinross is expected to complete 200,000 metres of drilling this year. The focus of drilling will be on the LP fault zone, the most significant and highest-grade portion of the Great Bear project.

“We are extremely encouraged by the pace of the project advancement under Kinross, and eagerly anticipate the disclosure of the initial mineral resource estimate in less than 10 months time,” said Great Bear President Calum Morrison, who has been handed the expanded role of CEO.

He is replacing John Robins, who has been named chair of the board, effective immediately.

When the acquisition of Great Bear was announced, Kinross said it is going ahead with the deal in the belief that the Great Bear project (known as Dixie) has significant potential to become a top tier deposit that could support a long-life mine complex and bolster Kinross’ long-term production outlook.

“In addition to the prospect of developing a quality, high-grade open pit mine, we also believe that a significant portion of the asset’s value is its longer-term potential, which includes the view of a sizeable underground operation,” said Kinross President and CEO J. Paul Rollinson.

“The Dixie project is ideally located in the renowned Red Lake mining district in Northern Ontario near established infrastructure and in a province with a low-carbon energy grid,” he said.

Kinross has recently disclosed drill results from 60 holes drilled in late 2021 and early 2022 in the LP fault. The results continue to confirm gold mineralization, which is open along strike and at depth.

On Friday, Great Bear Royalties shares eased 14.4% or 69 cents to $4.11 in light trading. The shares currently trade in a 52-week range of $8.24 and $3.31.


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