• Major Alliance Resources shareholder Ian Gandel tables an off-market takeover bid
  • Peel Mining’s $23m cap raise to be cornerstoned by wealthy mine finder/company builder Josh Pitt
  • Castle Minerals uncovers several lithium anomalies

Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Wednesday February 23.

 

ALLIANCE RESOURCES (ASX:AGS)

Yesterday evening AGS reported that major shareholder (72%) Ian Gandel had tabled an off-market takeover bid at 18c per share – a ~35% premium on the last closing price.

Gandel is a rich guy who built and leased shopping centres and was previously involved in the Priceline retail chain.

He is also big into mining, having been an investor in the industry since 1994.

Gandel is currently also non-executive chair of gold miner Alkane Resources (ASX:ALK) and rare earths play Australian Strategic Materials (ASX:ASM).

Alliance’s main project is the ‘Wilcherry’ gold-iron ore project in South Australia, which has resources of 152,000oz (at a solid ore grade of 4.3g/t) and 1.15Mt grading 59.4% iron.

The deposit could get bigger: 83% of the resources occurs within 120m of surface because Alliance hasn’t really drilled any deeper.

A 2019 scoping study envisaged a 250,000 tpa gold processing plant costing ~$44m to build.

AGS says the board (excluding Gandel) is considering the takeover proposal and will update shareholders with a formal recommendation once a bidder’s statement is received outlining the full offer.

It also decided to extend the closing date for the entitlement offer announced on 2 February, in which shareholders can subscribe for one new share for every eight shares held on 7 February at an issue price of $0.13 per share to raise ~ $3.38m.

Seems like a bargain at this point.


 

CASTLE MINERALS (ASX:CDT)

Fresh analysis of historical gold sampling has uncovered several lithium anomalies at CDT’s ‘Woodcutters’ project in the Norseman region of WA.

Woodcutters encompasses some 10km of the “Western Australia Lithium Corridor” which hosts the nearby Bald Hill, Buldania, and Mt Marion deposits:

Subject to grant of the exploration licences, CDT will do a mapping and rock chip sampling program of its own, focussing initially on these “high priority”­ anomalies.

“If the results of the sampling indicates the presence of lithium in the form of spodumene, then an RC drilling program would most likely be the next stage to determine the full extent of mineralisation,” it says.

CDT – which now calls itself a “project incubator” — blazed an acquisition trail in 2021, making a timely ground grab around Rumble Resources’ (ASX:RTR) significant lead-zinc discovery at Earaheedy in WA, adding lithium to its portfolio, and bolstering its graphite exposure.

The $50m market cap stock is up 27% year-to-date. It had $2.3m in the bank at the end of the September quarter. It had $6m in the bank following a $3.6m cap raise in January.


 

THOR MINING (ASX:THR)

The 177,000t copper, 71,500oz gold ‘Alford East’ project could get bigger and higher grade, THR said yesterday arvo.

Previously reported drilling – including a highlight 18.2m @ 2.0% Cu and 0.34g/t Au from 15.8m – has been used to generate a 3D geological model, which highlights key structural and lithological controls on mineralisation and potential high-grade targets.

A phase two diamond drilling program is being designed.

“The success of our first phase of drilling, with significant uplift in copper and gold grade adjacent to the Netherleigh Fault, is very exciting and suggests the potential for extended zones of higher-grade copper and gold along strike and at depth,” THR MD Nicole Galloway Warland says.

Met test work trialling an environmentally friendly recovery process has also returned positive initial results.

“These favourable initial hydrometallurgical results for the metal recovery for both copper and gold using a socially and environmentally friendly solution ’glycine’ rather than conventional acid in-situ recovery (ISR) is significant, as Thor strives towards the in-situ assessment of the Alford East Project,” Warland says.

$10m market cap THR is up 30% year-to-date. It had $2.9m in the bank at the end of December.


 

PEEL MINING (ASX:PEX)

PEX will raise $23m to grow the ‘South Cobar’ copper project – “with the ultimate aim to advance towards development of a 10-year copper operation”.

The cash will be raised at 18c per share – a very reasonable 10% discount to the last closing price — with the placement to be cornerstoned by one Josh Pitt.

Pitt is a geologist with long history in mining, having discovered the tier 1 Golden Grove zinc-copper mine.

He is also the founder and major shareholder in Red Hill Limited (ASX:RHI) which recently sold its Red Hill Iron Ore JV interest to Mineral Resources Limited (ASX:MRL) for >$400m in cash milestone payments and royalties.

Immediately after the placement Jim Simpson, who has been executive director of mining at PEX since September 2019, will move to a full-time role as CEO and managing director.

Simpson was the CEO and managing director of Aurelia Metals from 2016 to 2019, during which time Aurelia acquired the Peak gold mine and made the ‘Federation’ and ‘Dominion’ discoveries.

Earlier roles included COO of Peak Gold Limited, director of Goldcorp Asia Pacific, general manager Mining Lead and Zinc at MIM Holdings and mine manager at Golden Grove for Normandy Mining.

The South Cobar project is underpinned by the combined Wirlong and Mallee Bull copper resources of 9.2Mt @ 2% copper and 25 g/t silver. Both offer significant growth potential, the company says.


 

ANSON RESOURCES (ASX:ASN)

(Up on no news)

ASN’s main game is the ‘Paradox’ lithium-bromine brines project in southern Utah, which is nearing a development decision.

In early Feb ASN expanded the project once again, acquiring an additional 8.1sqkm of lithium rich ground right next door.

A major JORC Resource expansion program is now underway to expand and upgrade the resource base at Paradox.

ASN has a project-wide Exploration Target of 1,300 million tonnes to 1,800Mt grading 80 to 140ppm (parts per million) lithium and 2,000 to 3,000ppm bromine.

An 18-hole drilling program is also due to kick off at the explorer’s ‘Bull’ nickel-copper-PGE project in the Julimar district of WA.

The $122m market cap stock is down 14% year-to-date. It had $9.6m in the bank at the end of December.