Lode Resources has raised ~$750k in oversubscribed pre-IPO funding and mandated Novus Capital as lead manager to a proposed ASX IPO, securing 100 per cent ownership of silver, gold and copper projects in the highly prospective New England Fold Belt in NSW.

With the backing of some well-known names in the junior resources space, Lode Resources has raised funding to complete pre-drilling exploration activities at the company’s six precious and base metal projects in the New England FB. Lode’s assets include three attractive gold projects: Uralla Gold, Thor Gold and Tea Tree Gold, as well as Webbs Consol silverp roject, and the Fender and Elsinor copper projects.

The New England FB is highly prospective but underexplored, with current in situ resource value estimated to be just 2 per cent of the entire state due a lack of exploration.

The “forgotten mineral province” in NSW is just starting to get noticed by the big majors. Despite historical production of gold, silver and base metals it has seen very modest drilling compared to the well picked-over Lachlan Fold Belt to the south

The potential of the New England FB has attracted some notable resource sector identities to Lode’s fund-raising. Well-known junior resources investor, David Hannon, the owner and operator of private investment bank, Chifley Investor Group, has backed the company.

Joining him are resources sector entrepreneurs and mining executives including Marty Holland (current executive chairman of Cobre Limited and non-executive director of newly-listed OzAurum Resources), Lorry Hughes (current MD of Yandal Resources Ltd and former MD and CEO of South Boulder Mines Ltd), Mike Ruane (chairman of Reward Minerals) and Sean Richardson (MD of Empire Resources Ltd ). Former Oxiana senior executive John Nitschke, who managed the development of the Prominent Hill copper gold project, the Golden Grove underground zinc operation and the Sepon copper expansion project, is also an investor.

Newmont next door

In particular, one of Lode’s strategic gold projects sits adjacent to the gold tenements newly acquired by Newmont Gold (NYSE:NEM; TSX:NGT) in the same geology where major structures such as the Plagyan fault have the potential to tap deep crustal fault systems providing a suitable environment for epizonal orogenic gold deposition.

This is significant given Newmont currently has the largest gold reserve base in the industry, and specifically pride themselves on investing in top tier jurisdictions. Other notable miners in the area include Red River Resources (ASX:RVR) who recently acquired and restarted production at their Hillgrove Gold Mine in NSW late last year.

The company’s flagship project, the Uralla gold project, is a significant goldfield, targeting two mineralisation styles of Intrusive Related Gold System (IRGS): high grade vein/fault structures and high tonnage mineralisation associated with cupola structures. The Tea Tree gold project is also an underexplored goldfield, and Thor Gold has a large gold anomaly potentially associated with high level intrusions or major regional fault structures.

Lode’s copper assets include the Fender copper project which has four known copper deposits – of which the Trough Gully Mine is drill ready.

In addition, the company has identified two significant copper anomalies which present large tonnage targets. The Elsinor copper project consists of a large regional magnetic and IP anomalies with anomalous base and precious metals identified in geochemical sampling.

With the silver price performing extremely strongly in recent times Lode’s Webbs Consol silver project is expected to rank highly in the company’s exploration planning. Webb’s Console comprises high grade silver bearing lodes with three attractive targets described by Lode as “drill ready”.

Experience is everything

Lode Resources was founded by experienced geologist and resources analyst, Ted Leschke and veteran banker Andrew van Heyst. Leschke has over 30 years’ experience in the resources industry including being MD of ASX-listed Equus Mining. Leschke has been appointed the MD of Lode. Former Merrill Lynch and ABN AMRO executive and current Bridge Street Capital executive director, Andrew Van Heyst, is the executive chairman of the company.

Lode Resources plans to use the pre-IPO funds to fast-track an ASX IPO targeted for Q2 this year, with Novus Capital appointed as the company’s lead manager.

This article was developed in collaboration with Lode Resources Ltd, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.