RNC advances on gold production update

A 76-kilogram high-grade gold specimen from the Beta Hunt Mine in Australia. Source: RNC Minerals Corp.

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RNC Minerals Corp. [RNX-TSX] shares were active Thursday after the company reported consolidated gold production of 9,485 ounces for the month of November 2019 from its Beta Hunt and Higginsville mines in Western Australia.

RNC’s key asset is a 100% interest in the producing Beta Hunt gold mine. RNC attracted international attention last year following news of a once-in-a lifetime gold strike in the Father’s Day Vein at Beta Hunt. The company said it had extracted 9,250 ounces of gold, worth $15 million, from a 130-tonne cut of rock about 500 metres underground at the mine.

The find included a single 95-kilogram chunk that contained 2,400 ounces of gold, worth about $3.8 million. A second 62-kilogram stone contained 1,620 ounces.

The Higginsville Gold Operations (HGO) are located 57 kilometres south of the Beta Hunt operation and 107 kilometres south of Kalgoorlie. HGO includes a 1.3 million tonne processing facility, a historical mineral resource of 1.9 million ounces, 370,000 ounces of gold reserves and 386 square kilometres of tenure with gold mineralization potential.

“The production results for November were strong and once again demonstrate the consistent and reliable production RNC has achieved since the acquisition of the Higginsville Gold Mine and Mill,” said RNC Chairman and CEO Paul Andre Huet.

RNC shares advanced on the news, rising 1.2% or $0.005 to 42 cents on active volume of 1.2 million. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of 34 cents and 80 cents.

“With December off to a good start, the strong combined October, November and third quarter 2019 production total of 41,470 ounces positions us very well with respect to meeting or exceeding our previously announced second half 2019 guidance of 42,000 to 49,000 ounces,” he said.

RNC said it will be transitioning to quarterly reporting of production results beginning in January 2020. In line with industry standards, the company will also provide annual production and cost guidance for 2020 during the first quarter of 2020.

RNC recently said it had begun mining at its Baloo stage 1 open pit, a project that is expected to supply feed to the mill at Higginsville (HGO).

RNC said the Baloo Stage 1 open pit (which is located on the HGO property) is the first of a series of open pits that the company is looking to put into production in a bid to maximize owned source feed for the HGO mill, which will also be used to process material from the company’s Beta Hunt mine.

RNC’s other key asset is a 28% interest in a nickel joint venture that owns the Dumont Nickel-Cobalt Project in the Abitibi region of Quebec. This property contains the second largest nickel reserve and ninth largest cobalt reserve in the world.

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