Maritime closes purchase of Nugget Pond gold circuit

Hammerdown project. Credit: Maritime Resources

As Maritime Resources (TSXV: MAE) completes a feasibility study for the past-producing Hammerdown gold project in Newfoundland and Labrador, the company has closed the purchase of the Nugget Pond gold circuit from Rambler Metals and Mining (AIM: RMM). This mill facility includes a carbon-in-pulp circuit, also lies in the Baie Verte district and is 140 km by highway from Hammerdown. Nugget Pond was built by Richmont Mines in 1995, last operated as a gold plant in 2012 and previously processed Hammerdown ore.

Maritime and Rambler originally entered into a letter of intent in December 2020, which outlined the terms of Maritime’s acquisition of the Nugget Pond facility, as well as Canadian exploration properties and royalties. Consideration includes Maritime assuming liabilities associated with the assets purchased, a US$2-million cash payment and the issue of 3.6 million Maritime shares, which are worth $500,000.

In the feasibility, the company plans to include an assessment of the optimal configuration for concurrent operation of the Nugget Pond circuit and Rambler’s copper concentrator.

With the closing of the Rambler deal, the Toronto-based junior now also holds the Lac Pelletier gold property in Rouyn-Noranda, 5 km south of Glencore’s (LON: GLEN) Horne smelter and a portfolio of mineral exploration properties and non-producing royalty interests in Canada.

Maritime has also announced that it has closed a $4-million investment by mining private equity fund Tembo Capital, which gives the fund a 7.7% stake in Maritime.

“The closing of the asset purchase agreement with Rambler and the equity investment from Tembo Capital places the company in a strong financial position to continue advancing the Hammerdown gold project towards a development decision,” Garett Macdonald, president and CEO of Maritime, said in a release. “The addition of the Nugget Pond gold circuit is a key component in de-risking the project, and a collaborative approach to utilize an existing asset within the province which minimizes the environmental footprint of a future new development such as Hammerdown.”

According to Rambler’s website, the Nugget Pond gold hydrometallurgical facility has a capacity of 500 t/d. Maritime is planning to pre-concentrate (sort) material mined at Hammerdown before trucking this upgraded material to Nugget Pond.

Maritime’s 98-sq.-km Green Bay property includes the historic Hammerdown mine and Orion project. Between 2000 and 2004, Hammerdown produced 143,000 gold oz. from open pit and underground operations.

In February 2020, Maritime published the results of a preliminary economic assessment on open pit and underground mining at the Hammerdown and Orion deposits. Over a nine-year life, the mine would produce an average of 57,900 gold oz. annually at all-in sustaining costs of US$939 per oz. with a preproduction capital cost estimate of $57 million.

The developer is working to deliver the feasibility in the fourth quarter.

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