Copper Fox’s strategy of value creation through acquisition, exploration and development of potentially low cost, large polymetallic porphyry copper projects in Canada and the United States has resulted in the ownership of significant amounts of copper, gold and molybdenum, a portfolio of exploration and development stage projects and the ability to determine a Net Asset Value per share for the company based on independent National Instrument 43-101 Technical Reports. Copper Fox also has a controlling interest (24.4%) in a publicly listed company that holds a 100% ownership in an early stage polymetallic porphyry copper project located in northern British Columbia, Canada.
Our approach is conservative and guided by technical and economic factors that affect both the copper industry and the junior resource market. Our conservative approach has served the company well in the past and we will continue this approach in 2019.
With the potential of another positive copper cycle in the near future, Copper Fox plans to increase its level of activities to technically advance some assets and work with our joint venture partner to enhance the value of the Schaft Creek project.
Our primary and most advanced asset is the 25% carried interest in the Schaft Creek Joint Venture (“SCJV”). The Schaft Creek project hosts one of the largest undeveloped polymetallic porphyry copper deposits in North America. Following the resource modelling completed in 2017; a multi-path approach investigating various sizing scenarios that targeted potential capital, operating and sustaining cost reductions, a higher-grade initial starter pit and identify other infrastructure and access opportunities to improve project economics was commenced in 2018. The SCJV has increased expenditures at Schaft Creek for 2019 to complete geotechnical and environmental studies and assemble a project team dedicated to the Schaft Creek project. In February 2019 Teck, pursuant to their Satellite Assets - Mineral Reserves and Mineral Resources Disclosure, reported an updated Mineral Resources statement for the first time with an effective date of 31 December 2018 on the project.
In late 2018, Copper Fox recognized the potential of a large Laramide age porphyry copper-molybdenum system at Mineral Mountain. The 2018 work has advanced the project from a “raw” mineral prospect to an early stage exploration project with two, large porphyry targets hosted in Laramide age intrusives.
At the Van Dyke In-Situ copper project; following the recommendations in the 2015 Preliminary Economic Assessment all historical pulp samples and selected intervals of drill core have been submitted for re-analysis to provide updated analytical information that could be used in the event that Copper Fox should decide to complete an updated resource estimate for this project. An updated resource estimate would be the first step toward completing the pre-feasibility study on the Van Dyke project.
With the SCJV funded and operated by Teck and Copper Fox advancing its other projects, 2019 is shaping up to be a busy year. This positioning, while it may not yield immediate results, establishes a basis from which to take advantage of the next commodity cycle. Our priority in 2019 is to continue building value. If successful, this work is expected to lead to a more robust company valuation and shareholder returns.
Elmer B. Stewart, P.Geol. M.Sc.