As gold notched a 0.4 per cent gain last night to sit at $2,160 per ounce, we bid a final farewell to Echo Resources after Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) completed its takeover of the junior gold explorer.

Northern Star launched its $193m takeover bid in late August, offering Echo shareholders 33c for every share they held to secure control of the Yandal gold project, which is about 400km north of Kalgoorlie and, more importantly, close to Northern Star’s Jundee operation.

Yandal covers 1,600sqkm and comes with a current resource of 1.8 million ounces of gold, along with the mothballed 1.8 million-ounce-per-annum Bronzewing processing plant.

Meanwhile, gold major Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM) acquired just under 11 million shares in Lundin Gold from Kinross Gold Corporation for $C79.6m ($88.4m), taking its stake in the owner of Fruta del Norte – a high-grade, underground gold-silver mine in Ecuador – up to 32 per cent.

The merger and acquisition activity continues with Dreadnought Resources (ASX:DRE) concluding transactions with two unrelated parties to acquire three key tenements over the Illaara Greenstone Belt about 160km northwest of Kalgoorlie.

Of these tenements, the northmost Metzke’s Find project stands out with historical workings over about 700m of strike and shallow drilling that returned results of up to 2m at 15.7 grams per tonne (g/t) from 19m and 5m at 4g/t gold from 11m.

These acquisitions add to the company’s existing four tenements in the Illaara.

“This strategic consolidation further demonstrates Illaara’s gold and base metal potential,” managing director Dean Tuck said.

“We have acquired a number of walk up drill targets at Metzke’s Find as well as clear targets around Reindler’s Gossans and NWA.

“Drilling on Metzke’s Find will commence in the March 2020 quarter. Work on the other new projects will be incorporated into existing, planned programs.”


In other ASX gold news today:

Matador Mining (ASX:MZZ) had identified three priority targets at its Cape Ray project in Canada. It follows a review of all historical data at the Window Glass Hill deposit that was then combined with data from Matador’s 2019 exploration program. The company will test these targets in 2020.