Newest mining explorer to trade on TSX venture worth watching
Aztec Minerals Inc. (AZT:TSX.V) begins trading on the TSX Venture Exchange on May 4. The company has completed a CA$4.025 million initial public offering. Haywood Securities was the exclusive agent for the IPO, and 11.5 million units were issued, including 1.5 million units exercised through the over-allotment option.
Coeur Mining Inc. has subscribed for 1,919,876 units, according to Aztec, representing "9.99% of the issued shares on a partially diluted basis upon completion of the IPO and Over-Allotment Option."
The proceeds will be used primarily to explore the Cervantes property in Sonora, Mexico. The property sits at the intersection of two trends, a porphyry copper trend that heads northwest into Arizona and a gold sulphide epithermal trend running east west. The copper trend hosts one of the five largest copper mines in the world, Buenavista del Cobre, run by Grupo Mexico, and the gold trend is home to Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd.'s (AEM:TSX; AEM:NYSE) La India mine, as well as Alamos Gold Inc.'s (AGI:TSX; AGI:NYSE) Mulatos mine.
Cervantes, which is road accessible, is a porphyry gold-copper prospect. According to Aztec, the company has "identified one main porphyry gold-copper target and several peripheral targets on the Cervantes Property. The first target, named the "California" zone, is a 900m long by 600m wide, outcropping oxide gold prospect in a near surface "supergene" zone, underlain by a larger sulfide gold-copper target at depth in the "hypogene" zone, both zones typical of porphyry gold-copper deposits."
Aztec plans to initiate a CA$540,000 drill program in late summer, after the rainy season ends. Before that, the company plans to "apply for the drill permits, prepare a camp on the property, repair and upgrade certain roads for drill access, and complete additional mapping and sampling to refine the drill sites. Aztec also has plans to expand its land position in Sonora, evaluate additional mineral properties for acquisition and grow its management team."
The company has an option agreement to purchase Cervantes from Kootenay Silver in two stages. It can earn up to a 65% interest over four years "by making certain exploration expenditures, cash payments, and share issuances to Kootenay over a four year period. Stage 2 gives Aztec the right to purchase the additional 35% interest by preparing a scoping study and resource estimate and paying Kootenay US$5.00 per gold equivalent ounce for their 35% share of the resource ounces. Kootenay will retain a 2.5% NSR, 0.5% of which Aztec can purchase for US$500,000. Aztec will be commencing year 3 of the Stage 1 option exercise requirements this year."
Aztec features an experienced team. President and CEO Joey Wilkins, in his 20 years with Kennecott, ran exploration projects for porphyry copper-gold deposits in northern Mexico and South America. Brad Cooke, the founder of Aztec and a director, is the CEO of Endeavour Silver Corp. (EDR:TSX; EXK:NYSE; EJD:FSE). Director Mark Rebagliati is the executive vice president for exploration for Hunter Dickinson and is a recipient of PDAC's Bill Dennis Award for a Canadian Discovery and Prospecting Success. And director Patricio Varas was the exploration manager of Far West Mining, which was acquired by Capstone Mining Corp. (CS:TSX) for $725 million in 2011 for its Santo Domingo copper-iron-gold project in Chile.
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