SolGold are an emerging copper-gold major with a huge focus on Ecuador. Ecuador is the most under-explored area along the highly rich Andean Copper Belt. The Andean Copper Belt covers 25% of the worlds global copper. The reason Ecuador has been under-explored historically compared to similar regions in Latin America is because of weather conditions, vegetation cover, and restriction in technology. Copper demand and prices are ever increasing so exploration in this mineral rich region is key.
SolGold is the largest tenement holder in Ecuador with the most geologists on the ground. They have a 450-strong workforce with 97% of the workforce being local and Ecuadorian. 87 of the 450-strong workforce are on the ground geologists, 30% of which is female. This emphasises SolGold’s support for local, regional and federal amenities, as well as their support for women in mining.
The company is well funded with endorsement from major mines and institutions which includes BHP and Newcrest as major stakeholders. They have up to US $104 million in the bank. In addition, SolGold has a highly skilled and experienced management team which all have their own investment in this project which will add to the future success of the company.
SolGold has identified up to 12 tier 1 copper projects within their tenement along the spine of Ecuador’s 3 highly metallogenic belts based on 156km worth of drilling. These tenements are located along the Carnegie ridge, Northern Ecuador. The porphyry system that is present in this region, formed as a result of low-angled plate collisions along the Carnegie ridge (made up of thick buoyant oceanic slabs). This then promotes uplift fracturing and chokes volcanoes. The porphyry’s stew in their own volatiles. Oxygen scavenges iron into magnetite and leaves copper and gold to concentrate in the sulphide phase.
SolGold’s flagship project is it’s Alpala project. The Alpala project is based in the Carnegie ridge, Northern Ecuador. The Alpala project is the most significant copper-porphyry discovery in the last 10 years and will only continue to get bigger and richer. SolGold has an 85% stake at Alpala alongside Cornerstone. Logistically the Alpala project is excellent, with no need for additional development. There is nearby accessible power 5-6km away, there are ports located 100km away, and there is excellent road access to the project. Alpala had a mineral resource of 23.2Mt of Gold and 10Mt of Copper at 0.9% in a high-grade core. This high-grade core means the orebody can be developed independently.
Written by Calvin Hayre