Harte Gold announces plans to strengthen operations through management additions as gold production increases
Interim CEO Stephen G. Roman of Harte Gold told InvestorIntel: “We are currently ramping up mining operations to 800 tonnes per day and as part of this transition from exploration company to operating company……The plan is to bring in a professional mine operations team to optimize production and continue the growth profile to 1,200 tonnes per day which will put us in the 100,000 (gold) ounces per year production category.”
On both accounts this is good news for shareholders. A “professional mine operations team” at Harte Gold is a good move as the gold developer has now transitioned to a gold producer. Stephen G. Roman will oversee this transition and build a team capable of growing Harte Gold into a profitable enterprise and continue an aggressive exploration program to build ounces on the Sugar Zone property. He will continue to serve the Company as non-executive Chairman of the Board. He will also serve as Interim CEO pending the appointment of a new President and CEO, expected to occur by October 28, 2019.
Harte Gold Corp. (TSX: HRT) is Ontario’s newest gold producer through its Sugar Zone Mine in White River Ontario. The transition from an exploration company to an operating company will still be overseen by Stephen G. Roman, as he will continue to serve the Company as a non-executive Chairman of the Board. Harte Gold will also continue their aggressive exploration program building ounces on their 79,335 hectare Sugar Zone property. The current resource estimate is 1,108,000 contained gold ounces @8.12g/t Indicated and 558,00 contained gold ounces @5.88g/t Inferred, all at a 3g/t Au cut-off.
Harte Gold’s 79,335 hectare Sugar Zone property and Sugar Zone mine
Harte Gold reports Q2 production increase of 42% over Q1
Harte Gold recently reported a second Quarter production of 7,754 gold ounces, an increase of 42% over Q1. The Company is continuing to ramp up to 800 tonnes per day of processed ore. Net revenue was $11.8 million, a 50% increase quarter over quarter that was attributed to increased gold production that averaged a realized price for the quarter of US $1,305 per payable ounce. The mill processed 53,216 tonnes of ore on a 591 tpd average. Note this will improve as average head grade processed was 4.89 g/t resulting from the blended grade of mine production and the lower grade surface stockpiles. Average head grade for mined ore was 6.01 g/t, so this will be the guide going forward as the surface stockpiles are now depleted.
Sugar Zone South continues to expand
The Company’s high grade Sugar Zone South continues to expand with current mineralization extended 300 meters along strike and 200 meters down dip remaining open in both directions. In the upper areas of the Sugar Zone South mineralized intersections have returned up to 23.59 g/t over 2.02 meters. As the high grade Sugar Zone South discovery continues to expand the Company expects to incorporate this new zone in an updated mineral resource estimate by the end of 2019. Combined, the Flat Lake and TNT Zones represent a previously unknown altered and mineralized horizon with anomalous gold and base metal values which occur along a strike length in excess of 10 km.
Harte Gold’s TNT and Flat Lake combined strike length is now in excess of 10 km
Costs to reduce as scale takes effect
Harte Gold stated: “At a stable 800 tpd run-rate, cash costs are expected to reduce to US$551 per ounce (AISC of US$957 per ounce) for 2020 and US$580 per ounce (AISC of $891 per ounce) over the life of mine.” This should mean 2020 will be a very good year for Harte, even better if the gold price holds above US$1,500/oz.
Appian Natural resources Fund is granted more warrants
Harte has agreed to issue Appian 3,950,000 warrants to purchase common shares of the Company at an exercise price of $0.35 per common share, expiring on August 28, 2022. Following the issuance of the new warrants, assuming the exercise of all of its warrants, Appian would own an aggregate of 180,447,991 common shares of Harte (representing a further increase of approximately 1.7% to 27.0% of the outstanding common shares of Harte).
The new management changes will be a good thing as Harte Gold will benefit from having the right team to match the new producer stage of mining. Underground mining is fraught with challenges and requires significant ongoing capital expenditure. Investors took a short term hit on the recent news (including the warrants), but really in the near term, the management bolster is a good move for Harte Gold.
Headquartered in Toronto Ontario Canada, Harte Gold Corp. has a market cap of C$ 173.3 million.