• Money harder to come by for explorers the in the post-COVID era
  • Disconnect between commodity prices and ASX share prices
  • Still deep value in precious metals, uranium stocks


The COVID investment bubble is over. IPOs have virtually dried up and raising cash in 2023 is tougher than it’s been for a couple of years.

Good cap-raises will get away, “but they must be good ones,” Austex Resource Opportunities principal consultant Rob Murdoch says.

By volume, the dominant gold sector naturally stands out as the biggest attractor of investor cash in Q1 2023, Murdoch told RIU Sydney conference attendees yesterday morning.

“$300m was raised for gold companies, about $170m for lithium, $75m for rare earths, and around $60m for oil and gas, and copper,” he says.

At the bottom is uranium with ~$10m raised – which is strange – because the uranium price also went up 4.9% in the quarter.

Meanwhile, when looking at share prices by commodity uranium stocks dropped the most.

The star commodity in Q1 was gold but again, the price of shares were down 9.5%, on average.

Is there value there?

“Must be,” Murdoch says.


Day 2 RIU Small Cap Wrap: Let’s look at some of the presenting gold stocks

The veteran ex-Cassini Resources team is back at it again with Killi Resources (ASX:KLI), which own four belt scale projects: West Tanami and Balfour (WA) and Ravenswood North and Mt Rawdon West (QLD).

First results from a “high impact” drilling program at Ravenswood North are due in the next 6-8 weeks.

The Rocky prospect has two targets with a similar ‘signature’ to big gold deposits 43km along strike (Mt Wright and Ravenswood).

To keep momentum up KLI is also raising $1.4m via entitlement offer at 5.5c/sh, fully underwritten by Canaccord Genuity and sub-underwritten by the explorer’s directors and CEO.


Greenstone Resources (ASX:GSR)  is focused on the wholly owned Burbanks gold project and Mt Thirsty JV (50-50) with Conico Resources (ASX:CNJ), both in WA.

“There are 755 ASX listed mining companies, of which 175 are gold explorers or gold developers,” GSR MD Chris Hansen told RIU attendees.

“But only 11 have undeveloped high-grade resources greater than 250,000oz, and only one is located within the epicentre of the Australian gold industry.”

He is talking about GSR’s historic 278,000oz Burbanks gold project, ~100km from Kalgoorlie, where an ongoing drilling program will hopefully lead to an updated resource in June.


Black Cat Syndicate (ASX:BC8)  recently announced two of the highest grade gold resources in Australia at its Paulsens and Coyote Central deposits, the latter part of the Western Tanami gold project.

With its lower grade but larger scale 1.3Moz Kalgoorlie East gold project also in the Black Cat portfolio, the explorer-cum-developer has over 2Moz of gold in resource as well as two unused processing plants.

One, Paulsens, is in such good nick the company could make a decision to restart the mine, which contains a high-grade underground resource of 258,000oz at 10.8g/t, by the middle of this year.


With 10.6Moz of gold under its belt at its Mallina project, De Grey (ASX:DEG) is not your average explorer.

“We had 2.2Moz before we found Hemi, but Hemi has grown it over the past 3 years by 8.5Moz,” DEG technical director Andy Beckwith told RIU attendees.

“It is a very large gold resource, and it’s of a different scale and a different beast to most gold deposits.

“It is a tier gold deposit in a tier 1 area.”

The mid-year should see completion of a definitive feasibility study (DFS) into what is set to become one of Australia’s biggest gold mines.

Completion of project funding should not be too far behind the DFS, and then it will all systems go.


Listed last year, Sarama Resources (ASX:SRR) ambition is to capitalise on what it believes will be Burkina Faso’s next great gold district.

At its flagship Sanutura project, Sarama has 582,000oz gold in the indicated category of its resource, with a further 2.35Moz inferred.

At the Karankasso project, in which Sarama holds an 18% stake, a 709,000oz inferred resource has been defined.

Those are big numbers, which the company believes could grow further.


In February Legacy Minerals (ASX:LGM) was up on volume after reporting a “remarkable discovery” at its Bauloora gold project in NSW.

Maiden drilling has consistently hit low-sulphidation epithermal veins along 1.5km strike at the Mee Mar prospect, including 16m (estimated true width ~12m) of veins parallel to the main Mee Mar prospect.

The discovery was validated when, in April, LGM inked a A$15 million farm-in and joint venture agreement with Newmont (NYSE:NEM, TSX:NGT) at Bauloora.

~US$36.37 billion capped Newmont is the world’s leading gold company with a combined global mineral reserve of 96.1Moz.

Already an excellent outcome for LGM shareholders.

“We pegged this ground 2 years ago, so it cost us zero dollars to acquire it,” LGM boss Chris Byrne told RIU attendees.

“And in 2 years we have adding significant value to the point we attracted the attention of Newmont.

Importantly at the back end of the [JV] agreement is this carry through to production, so there is a financing option there which would see us poentially owning 20% of a Newmont-sized mine.”

At Stockhead we tell it like it is. While Killi, Greenstone, De Grey, and Black Cat are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.