Caledonia Mining Corp takes over Bilboes gold project
Bilboes is a large, high grade gold deposit located approximately 75 km north of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. Historically, it has been subject to a limited amount of open pit mining.
The Project has NI43-101 compliant proven and probable mineral reserves of 1.96 million ounces of gold in 26.64 million tonnes at a grade of 2.29 g/t and measured and indicated mineral resources of 2.56 million ounces of gold in 35.18 million tonnes at a grade of 2.26 g/t and inferred mineral resources of 577,000 ounces of gold in 9.48 million tonnes at a grade of 1.89 g/t1. The Project has produced approximately 288,000 ounces of gold since 1989.
A feasibility study prepared by the vendors (the "DRA Feasibility Study") indicates the potential for an open-pit gold mine producing an average of 168,000 ounces per year over a 10-year life of mine.
Caledonia will conduct its own feasibility study to identify the most judicious way to commercialise the Project to optimize shareholder returns. One approach that will be considered is a phased development which would minimise the initial capital investment and reduce the need for third party funding.
Caledonia entered into a tribute arrangement with Bilboes Holdings when it entered into the share purchase agreement so that oxide operations could re-start. The tribute agreement is now unnecessary due to completion of the Transaction and oxide operations are anticipated to start from February 2023 with the expectation that Bilboes Holdings will return to profitable operations shortly thereafter. This also has the benefit of an element of pre-stripping for the main development of the Project.