Geoff Stanley, CEO Commented:
“I am delighted to be able to report our first full year of results, following the formation of Panthera in September 2017 and the subsequent listing on the AIM market in December.
“With our Management’s considerable experience, network of connections and technical capabilities we were able to acquire and significantly advance three properties in West Africa during the period under review.
“Our joint ventures were further strengthened post the reporting period, when drilling at the Naton JV saw ore grade gold mineralisation encountered on four out of five structures tested. Meanwhile, exploration at the Bassala JV has yielded an excellent, extensive and highly encouraging gold in soil anomaly that is clearly worth drill testing.
“Meanwhile we continue to work to secure the mineral rights to the key properties we are legally entitled to in India. We are especially pleased that the US$5 million equity investment from Republic Investment Management of Singapore will provide initial funding for the Bhukia project drill-out once a PL has been granted. We look forward to updating the market of our progress and are hopeful that the next 12 months will be a transformational one for the company.”
Panthera Resources PLC (LON: PAT), the gold exploration and development company with assets in India and West Africa, today provided a summary of the Company’s audited financial results for the year ended 31 March 2018.
Highlights of the Year Ending 31 March 2018
· The consolidated loss of the Company for the financial period after providing for income tax and eliminating non-controlling interests amounted to $2,479,305 (2017: $293,666).
· The Company is not yet a minerals producer, hence derives no ongoing income from production. Thus, the reported loss was due primarily to expenditure on exploration activities and expenses related to the Company’s restructuring and AIM market listing.
Formation of Panthera
· Panthera was formed in September 2017 to be the holding company of the group.
· It then completed the acquisition of 100% of Indo Gold Limited via a one for one share offer.
· On 21 December 2017, Panthera listed on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange.
Board reorganisation, and appointment of Managing Director
· Following the successful acquisition of Indo Gold, the Board was reconstituted to include the Indo Gold Directors.
· Geoff Stanley was appointed Managing Director of the Company.
· After the year-end, Ms Catherine Apthorpe was appointed to the Board, bringing important independence, knowledge and skills relevant to the Company’s activities.
The Bhukia Joint Venture (“JV”) project in Rajasthan, India
· Targeted for a +6.0Moz resource drill-out
· Primary mineralisation occurs from near-surface, with potential to develop a large, bulk mineable open-pit gold-copper mining operation.
· A JORC-compliant resource of 1.74Moz exists, with a planned exploration programme that targets an increase to over 6.0Moz.
· The JV’s prospecting licence application reached key milestones during the year with various approval bodies.
· In August 2018 the Government of Rajasthan (“GoR”) rejected the prospecting licence application on what the Board considers to be spurious grounds. Therefore, the JV is moving to secure Stay Order protection from the High Court of Rajasthan, of its former reconnaissance permit areas.
· Following the rejected prospecting licence application, the Company’s JV partner, Metal Mining India Pvt. Ltd. (MMI) has filed an extensive Writ Petition with the High Court of Rajasthan, detailing the previous resolution of all the issues brought by the GoR, positive confirmation of MMI’s rights approved by a Joint Committee consisting of representatives of the Geological Survey of India (“GSI”), Indian Bureau of Mines and the GoR’s own representatives from the Department of Mines and Geology and the subsequent disregard for Indian Corporate law adopted by the GoR. The Board is confident that MMI will prevail in court and protect its shareholder’s interests.
· Whilst the Company and MMI will attempt to expedite the legal process and direct dialogue with the Government of India, the 2019 elections will extend timing for granting the prospecting licence, which may now extend into Q4 2019
High potential West Africa gold exploration portfolio with drill-ready targets
· The Naton JV project in southern Burkina Faso, West Africa, was acquired and significantly advanced towards first drill testing.
· Drilling at Naton after the period-end saw ore grade gold mineralisation encountered on four out of five structures tested.
· The Kalaka JV project in southern Mali, West Africa was acquired and significant gold in soil anomalies were identified.
· The Bassala JV was negotiated, the project area acquired, and exploration commenced. This has subsequently yielded an excellent, extensive and highly encouraging gold in soil anomaly that is clearly worth drill testing.
· Republic Investment Management (“Republic”) of Singapore agreed to provide a $5.0m funding package in three tranches:
o Tranche one of $1.5 million was drawn down in June 2017
o Tranche two of $1.5 million was drawn down following the successful December 2017 listing of the Company on the AIM market.
o Tranche three of $2.0 million is to be drawn down upon the grant of a prospecting license for the Bhukia project and receipt of the necessary approvals to recommence exploration drilling.
· The Company had a cash balance of $1,571,578 at the year end. Base on current expenditure levels and expected activity over the next 12 months, the Company will require further funding. The Company has a supportive shareholder base, but will also aim to expand its investor base in the capital markets both in London and Australia.
The Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 December 2017, along with an explanatory note for shareholders, will be available shortly to view and download from Panthera’s website (www.pantheraresources.com) in accordance with rule 26 of the AIM Rules for Companies along with a notice of Annual General Meeting and form of Proxy. The AGM is scheduled to take place at 2PM on 28 September 2018 at 2 Duke Street, Manchester Square London W1U 3EH.