Gold Digger: Old phones gathering dust? You’re sitting on a gold mine
Link copied to
Our Gold Digger column wraps all the news driving ASX stocks with exposure to precious metals.
Gold’s nature is uniquely twofold – it acts both as a safe haven asset (via gold bar and coin purchases) and in practical applications, mostly jewellery and technology.
In 2021, the use of gold in the tech sector increased 9% to reach a three-year high of 330 tonnes (11.6Moz).
While technology demand is smaller than other sectors, its uses are far reaching and prevalent in a variety of electronics, from mobile devices, medical equipment, and cleantech.
1 gram of gold can be recovered from about 41 recycled mobile phones, says Sandra Wilson, ‘urban miner’ and Professor of Ecological Metal Design at University of Dundee.
With the price of gold currently around A$2,600 per ounce — roughly $84 per gram — there’s about $2 worth of gold in every junked device.
MobileMuster reckons there is about 23.5 million mobiles still stored in our homes around the country.
If our loose grasp on the dark arts of mathematics is correct, that’s about 20,200oz of gold worth $52,520,000, just sitting there.
Companies are popping up all over the joint to take advantage of the recycling thematic.
Like Mint Innovation, which reckons it can recover $US12,000 worth of gold from one tonne of old circuit boards.
And it’s not just gold, either. Electronics also contain silver, PGEs, glass, and aluminium, while their batteries contain graphene, nickel, cobalt, and lithium.
Here’s how ASX-listed gold & silver stocks are performing:
Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort. Best viewed on a laptop
> Stocks missing from this list? Email [email protected]
+1Mozpa miner B2Gold will acquire neighbouring 668,000oz Mali gold explorer OKU for an implied 17.25c per share.
That’s a 127% premium to OKU’s last closing price, and premium to any closing share price over the past 12 months.
The implied consideration breaks down into 0.0206 B2Gold shares and A$0.0525 cash per Oklo share.
While long term shareholders would be taking a haircut on the deal, post-coup Mali is a fairly risky jurisdiction for a junior to be operating in. The OKU board – which unanimously recommends the transaction – says the deal is “mutually beneficial”.
“The B2Gold proposal was welcomed by the Oklo directors and comes at an opportune time for Oklo shareholders to crystallise value and de-risk their investment in the company,” OKU Simon Taylor says.
“Whilst the Oklo team continues to see significant potential in the Dandoko Project and the region generally, Dandoko is at an inflection point and this transaction removes the risks associated with project development, future capital raisings and other risks faced by a junior gold explorer in a foreign jurisdiction.
“Considering B2Gold’s compelling offer along with the risks involved in Oklo pursuing a ‘go it alone’ strategy, the board has resolved that the opportunity to combine with a well-funded, substantial multi-asset gold producer represents a highly attractive outcome for Oklo shareholders.”
Gold explorer BEZ mooned last week on no news, before being placed in a trading halt by the ASX police.
In response to a Price and Volume Query, BEZ maintains that the results on ongoing drilling have not been leaked.
“All computers at the Bau office are password locked to prevent unauthorised access,” it says as part of a very detailed response.
“Only the QA/QC geologist and geologists working on the specific cores have access to the computer system, and all staff and consultants are subject to confidentiality agreements.”
BEZ’s substantial 3.3Moz ‘Bau’ gold project in Malaysia also includes an additional 4.9Moz – 9.3Moz exploration target.
Eight holes have now been successfully completed at the ‘Jugan’ prospect with assays for seven holes reported to date and a further 11 holes pending release.
These were anticipated to be received progressively from the end of last week, BEZ says, but are now overdue because of lab backlogs.
Drilling has now moved to the 644,000oz ‘Bekajang’ prospect to grow that resource.