Canada-based explorer Lion One Metals (ASX:LLO) has recruited gold expert Quinton Hennigh to help it with its Tuvatu project in Fiji.

Mr Hennigh is well-known internationally and in Australia, claiming more of the spotlight in 2017 after he revved up excitement for Pilbara conglomerate gold with a live video stunt at the Denver Gold Forum showing prospectors digging nuggets out of the ground.

He did that in his role as chairman of Canada-listed Novo Resources, a company he helped start in 2010.

Novo was the first company — along with partner Artemis Resources (ASX:ARV) — to take the conglomerate gold story public.

But long before the conglomerate gold hype, Mr Hennigh was very familiar with the type of big gold discoveries you can turn into a mine with a bit less hassle.

He spent over 25 years with big gold players like Homestake Mining, Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM) and Newmont Mining.

Mr Hennigh also made a number of significant gold discoveries for Canadian exploration companies, such as the 5-million-ounce Springpole gold deposit in Ontario and the Rattlesnake Hills gold project in Wyoming.

Lion One has now appointed Mr Hennigh as technical advisor.

The company is working to bring the mine into production, and mid-last year secured a $US40m loan to fund construction.

“Quinton is the ideal person to direct our Fiji exploration activities in conjunction with Lion One Managing Director Stephen Mann, and VP Exploration Darren Holden,” said Lion One Chairman and CEO Walter Berukoff.

“He clearly shares our thesis that Tuvatu is a gold system of similar potential scale to the world-class Vatukoula gold deposit 40km away, where 7 million ounces of gold have been produced.”

Mr Hennigh said Tuvatu has similarities not only to Vatukoula and other large alkaline systems in the South Pacific, but also to several multi-million-ounce alkaline gold systems he is familiar with in North America.

“Given that only a very small volume of the overall system has been explored, I see excellent potential for growth at Tuvatu,” he said.