DENVER, CO -- (Marketwired) -- 06/17/13 -- Eastern Resources, Inc. (OTCBB: ESRI), a Delaware corporation ("ESRI" or, the "Company"), announced today that the Board of Directors of the Company will post its current Corporate Presentation on its website www.easternresourcesinc.com, this week.
The Updated Corporate Presentation details the history and development of the Company's Golden Dream Mine, the Montana Tunnels Mine, and the Diamond Hill Mine. Through a reverse triangular merger completed on April 6, 2012, the Company acquired from Elkhorn Goldfields LLC ("EGLLC"), the two operating subsidiaries of EGLLC, Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc. ("EGI"), a Montana corporation and the owner of the Golden Dream Mine, and Montana Tunnels Mining Inc. ("MTMI"), a Delaware corporation and the owner of the Montana Tunnels Mine and Diamond Hill Mine(1).
Presented below is a brief review of the material information contained in the Corporate Presentation and not previously presented:
Summary of Opportunity Highlights: The Company owns three fully permitted mines in the Unites States; has an experienced management team; the existing permitted mines present favorable economics (~$498 per gold ounce at the Golden Dream Mine); at the Golden Dream Mine the Company expects 55,000 ounce(2) equivalents of steady-state gold production by Q4 2013 and approximately 150,000 ounce(2) equivalents of gold production annually at full production by Year 3; more than $300 Million of existing infrastructure; there are 2.5 million ounce equivalents of gold; and there is an additional exploration potential of 2.5 to 3.5 million ounces of gold(2).
Timeline: 1998 - EGI purchased the Elkhorn Project from Newmont Gold Corp.; July 2006 - EGI and Apollo Gold Corp. entered into a 50:50 joint venture to operate the Montana Tunnels Mine; July 21, 2008 - EGI was granted its Operating Permit -- subject to placement of a reclamation bond -- by the Montana Department of Environmental Quality ("MDEQ"); Oct. 27-Nov. 3, 2008 - MTMI received Favorable Records of Decision for the M-Pit expansion by the MDEQ and US Bureau of Land Management ("BLM"); February, 2010 - EGLLC acquired the remaining 50% of MTMI; November 30, 2011 - the MDEQ granted EGI a full operating permit; April 6, 2012 - ESRI acquired EGI and MTMI via reverse merger.
Current Development Plan Reserves:
•Elkhorn Goldfields: Golden Dream ("GD") Reserves(2) - 1.1 M tons; Initial GD Mine Life - 5 Years; GD Contained Metal - Gold 258,000 oz., Copper 8.5 M lbs.; Golden Dream Resource Extension - Additional 1.1 M Tons; Adds 250,000 to 300,000 oz. of gold production to GD; Extends GD mine life by 5+ years; Other known Resources - 1.4M oz; Additional exploration potential - 2-3M oz.
•Montana Tunnels Mine: Updated M-Pit Mine Reserves(3) - 40.2M tons; M-Pit Mine Life - 8.5+ Years; M-Pit Contained Metal - Gold 505,000 oz., Silver 8.7M oz., Lead 127M lbs., Zinc 362M lbs.; Additional Expansion 60M tons below M-pit; Mill and existing Infrastructure - $300M+ in replacement cost.
•Diamond Hill: ESRI's third fully permitted and bonded mine; Production to date (from 1998 to 2001) - 700,000 tons; produced 165,000 ounces of gold; Diamond Hill Reserves & Resources - Probable 13.7K oz.; Inferred(3) 34.4K oz.; 75 road miles to Montana Tunnels mill facility. Ore development program will target an additional 200K to 250K oz.
Montana Permitting: Montana Regulation - In 1998, Montana's voter initiative banned the use of cyanide in open pit cyanide-leach gold and silver mining for new operating permits. ESRI's Solution - Redesign mine plans utilizing underground mining methods and conventional milling scenarios. Permitting Results - ESRI has operating permits for Golden Dream Mine, the Montana Tunnels Mine, and the Diamond Hill Mine from the MDEQ and the BLM.
EGI - Elkhorn Property History: Located in Elkhorn Mining District, Jefferson County, Montana, the original Elkhorn mine discovered Silver, Lead & Gold in the 1870s; silver & lead mining ran sporadically through the 1940s; modern exploration techniques lead to the discovery of the Carmody gold mine in 1984 by Gold Fields Mining Corp., and concentrated exploration began; since the mid-1980s exploration including approximately 500,000 feet of drilling by mining majors, including Gold Fields Corp., Santa Fe Pacific, and Newmont Corp. have outlined a mineral resource of 1.653 million ounces(3) of gold contained in four mineralized deposits within the Elkhorn Property boundaries; in 1996, Santa Fe Pacific Gold completed a resource estimate for the Sourdough/Golden Dream Deposit; the initial mine target, the Golden Dream Mine, develops approximately 20% of the known Elkhorn gold resources; EGI purchased the Elkhorn Property from Newmont Corp. in 1998; East Butte, Carmody and Gold Hill expansion planned for after development of Golden Dream Mine; and on November 30, 2011, EGI received its operating permit for the Golden Dream Mine from the MDEQ.
The Golden Dream Mine: March 2006, EGI commenced work on the Golden Dream Mine Exploration Permit, which was granted by the MDEQ in May 2006; autumn 2006, EGI commenced work on the Golden Dream Mine plan, confirmation drilling and Full Operating Permit. The Permit was granted on July 18, 2008 by the MDEQ; November 2011, EGI put in place the $591,474 reclamation bond and commenced construction of the Golden Dream Mine; December 2011, Golden Dream Mine intercepted the ore body as targeted; and Golden Dream Mine estimated to be to reach full production within one year of production financing.
Golden Dream Mine Development Plan: EGI is implementing a staged expansion at the Golden Dream Mine: 1) Install water treatment system -- Originally, it was believed EGI could successfully mine the oxide zone prior to the installation of the water treatment system. However, water was encountered above the water table, but within the oxide zone. The water treatment system was completed in March 2012 and is now operational. 2) Beginning Q3 2013, extend primary access ramp at Golden Dream Mine to reach deeper ore zones (Drill intercepts suggest ore grade mineralization to depths of 1,200 feet below the surface (the current Golden Dream Plan extends to a depth of approximately 850 feet below the surface). 3) Diamond Hill mill will be fully refurbished and $5 million in bonding will be placed with the MDEQ before start up. 4) A "bore" raise will be completed from surface into the main access ramp as a secondary egress -- Full production expected to be achieved within one year of production financing, now anticipated to be in Q2 2014, six months from initial mining. 5) Re-commission the Mill Complex at Montana Tunnels to allow for the processing of ore shipments.
EGI Reserves and Resources:Deposit Classification Tons Gold Copper Gold Gold (opt) (%) Ounces Equivalent OuncesGolden Dream Mineable Reserve(1) 1,171,000 0.221 0.41% 258,000 287,000Gold Hill Not Probable 400,000 0.195 Assayed 75,000 75,000East Butte Not Probable 300,000 0.183 Assayed 55,000 55,000Carmody Not Probable 300,000 0.151 Assayed 45,000 45,000Subtotal 2,171,000 462,000Property Resources Inferred 1,191,000Property Total Proven, Ounces of Probable & 1,653,000 Gold Inferred(2) 1.Internal estimates, not SEC Guide 7 compliant proven & probable reserves. EGI has taken its geologic reserve of 1,183,484 tons grading 0.243 ounces of gold per ton and copper of 0.406% copper and applied an industry standard dilution and deletion percentage to achieve its Mineable Reserve. 2.Santa Fe Pacific determined Measured and Inferred gold ounces to be 1,653,000 within the four known Elkhorn Property deposits - Golden Dream, Gold Hill, East Butte and Carmody.
Montana Tunnels Mine Production History: Mine Startup - February 1986; Length of Operation - 24 Years; Total Ore Processed - 98 Million tons; Gold Recovered - 1.7 Million oz.; Silver Recovered - 30.8 Million oz.; Lead Recovered - 400 Million lbs.; Zinc Recovered - 1.1 Billion lbs. $4.85 billion at today's prices.
M-Pit Fully Permitted: July 2004 - MTMI applied for a Major Amendment for the M-Pit mine expansion. November 2008 - Following an Environmental Impact Statement process, MTMI received favorable Records of Decision from the MDEQ and the BLM. 2008 - 2009 - MTMI received authorization to construct compensatory wetlands for the M-Pit plan from the US Army Corps of Engineers. Wetland mitigation was completed. 2009 - Additional reclamation bond has been agreed to for the M-Pit mine expansion plan. Present posted bond amount is $18.7 million ($15.1 million cash and $3.6 million appraised real estate). An additional approximately $15.0 million bond posting is required to be funded in order fulfill the M-Pit bonding requirement of approximately $34 million. Today - All other permits and licenses required to operate the Montana Tunnels Mine are current subject to bonding.
M-Pit Mine Restart: The M-Pit expansion will "layback" or expand the perimeter of the current pit making it wider and allowing mining at the pit bottom. Gold extraction costs of ~$418 per gold and gold oz. equivalents are estimated. Upon financing, full-time hourly employees will be increased to approximately 160 to 190 individuals. The existing mining fleet at Montana Tunnels will be used and augmented with new equipment as it becomes available. Recommencement of the Mill Complex at Montana Tunnels is expected to be seamless; substantially all components of the concentrating facility are intact.
Exploration below the M-Pit An additional 60M tons of potential ore has been identified below the M-Pit. ESRI has developed a bulk underground mining approach that may allow for additional extraction with favorable economics. Additional pit expansion may be considered if future mineral prices justify the costs. Potential for gold "halo" based on the existing models.
M-Pit Reserves Tons Gold Silver Lead Zinc Gold Gold (opt) (opt) (%) (%) Ounces Equivalent OuncesProven 29,336,000 0.0130 .215 .159 .464 369,915 707,399Probable 10,949,000 0.0120 .215 .153 .408 136,005 253,834Proven & 40,285,000 505,920 961,233 ProbableM-Pit Zinc and lead Concentrates: M-Pit Zinc Concentrate Lead Concentrate Annual Projected Production ~46,000 tons ~16,000 tons Contained Zinc 52-56% 8-11% Contained Lead 1-2% 50-55% Contained Gold 0.1-0.3 oz/ton 2.0-3.5 oz/ton Contained Silver 5-20 oz/ton 20-50 oz/ton Contained Copper 1-1.5% 0.5-1% Contained Iron 6-8% 7-11% Impurities Very Low Very Low
Long-Term Growth Strategy: ESRI plans to grow aggressively within it capital funding capabilities utilizing its current asset profile, knowledge of Montana's precious metals landscape, and existing infrastructure. EGI and MTMI both have exploration potential outside of their currently defined resources. As further resources are proven, the amount of production and life of mine are expected to increase. Diamond Hill has been extensively mined, but surrounding drill results suggest additional mineralized structures. Diamond Hill can provide higher margin ore to process through the Montana Tunnels mill facility. ESRI has the capability to acquire and develop nearby projects in Montana that have already been identified through management's local knowledge and experience over the past 15 years. The milling facilities have excess capacity to process additional ore discovered at ESRI's current projects or deposits acquired nearby. ESRI's long term goal is to be a major gold producer with annual production of 500,000 ounces of gold and/or gold equivalents. There can be no assurances, however, that ESRI will achieve these goals.
•YEAR 1: Production 55,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine. Strategy - Begin operations at the Golden Dream Mine deposit.
•YEAR 2: Production 100,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine, Montana Tunnels Mine. Strategy - Full production at Golden Dream Mine and start up Montana Tunnels Mine.
•YEAR 3: Production 150,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine, Montana Tunnels Mine. Strategy - Full production at Golden Dream Mine and Montana Tunnels Mine.
•YEAR 4: Production 250,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine, Montana Tunnels Mine, East Butte. Strategy - Convert already identified resources at current projects into mineable reserves. Begin mining the East Butte deposit.
•YEAR 5: Production 325,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine, Montana Tunnels Mine, East Butte, Diamond Hill. Strategy - Begin sending ore from Diamond Hill deposit to Montana Tunnels mill. Identify and acquire nearby deposits.
•YEAR 6: Production 500,000 oz. Deposits mined - Golden Dream Mine, Montana Tunnels Mine, East Butte, Diamond Hill, Golden Hill. Strategy - Full production on all projects. Maximize capacity of Montana Tunnels mill with ore from nearby deposits.
About Eastern Resources, Inc.
Eastern Resources, Inc. is an early stage, U.S. public company currently pursuing a business strategy in the precious and base metals mining sector in the United States. On April 6, 2012, the Company completed the acquisition of Montana Tunnels Mining, Inc. and Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc., and these two companies are now wholly owned subsidiaries of the Company.
About Montana Tunnels Mining, Inc.
Montana Tunnels Mining, Inc., a Delaware corporation, owns the Montana Tunnels Mine which is a fully integrated, open-pit mining operation, which is seeking to recommence mining and milling operations. Currently, operations are limited to care and maintenance functions. Montana Tunnels Mine staff engineers, in association with outside, independent mining consultants, have designed a mine plan for the expansion of the existing mine. Montana Tunnels Mine has received favorable records of decisions to begin this pit expansion from the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and the Bureau of Land Management. This deposit incorporates a proven and probable mineral reserve of 40.3 million tons of ore containing 505,000 ounces of gold, 8.7 million ounces of silver, 362 million pounds of zinc and 127 million pounds of lead. Ore will be processed through Montana Tunnels Mine's 15,000 ton-per-day concentrating facilities.
About Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc.
Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc., a Montana corporation, owns the Elkhorn Property which is a property with four identified gold and gold-copper mineral deposits. At the time Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc. acquired the Elkhorn Property from Newmont Mining Corporation in 1998, a mineral resource of 1.6 million ounces of gold had been delineated on the property. Elkhorn Goldfields, Inc. has advanced the first of these four deposits -- the Golden Dream deposit -- to the point where it is fully permitted and underground development is underway. The Golden Dream mine deposit incorporates a probable mineral reserve of 1.17 million tons of ore containing 258,000 ounces of gold and 8.5 million pounds of copper. Ore Production from the Golden Dream operation will be trucked 35 road miles to the Montana Tunnels Mine for processing through a separate 1,000 ton-per-day mill located within the Montana Tunnels concentrating facility.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release of Eastern Resources, Inc. ("ESRI" or, the "Company") contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. securities laws. Such forward-looking statements may include, without limitation, statements regarding the business strategy, plans and goals of the Company, plans for the Montana Tunnels Mine and the Golden Dreams Mine (the "Mines") including anticipated scheduling and production estimates, and direction of production, as well as estimated capital and other costs; future gold, silver, zinc, lead and copper prices; reserve and resource estimates; estimated gold and silver and base metal potential for expansion of existing resources; timing and results of drilling programs; hedging practices; currency exchange rate fluctuations; government regulation of mining operations; environmental risks; unanticipated reclamation expenses; share valuation, including valuation relative to other resource companies and other statements that are not historical facts. Generally, these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends" "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or state that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved". Forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations and assumptions. The anticipated timing and cost of activation of the Mines as well as the expected production from the Mines are based on the following assumptions: Capital and operating cost estimates are based on recent cost estimates of construction and mining costs developed by independent consultants and ESRI personnel; production estimates are based upon the actual metal recovery achieved on the Golden Dream Mine and Montana Tunnels Mine ores; and ore tonnage estimates and precious and base metal grades are as indicated in the plans and production schedules for the Mines developed by Company personnel and outside consultants. Although ESRI management believes that its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove correct. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, among others; risks relating to the planned activation of the Mines including risks of delays in receipt of reclamation bond approval and delays in completion of construction, uncertainties relating to availability and timing of capital for financing the planned reactivation, risks relating to availability of outside contractors, risks of shortages of equipment or supplies, uncertainties relating to obtaining approvals and permits from government regulatory authorities, and risks of inability to achieve anticipated production volume or manage cost increases; risks that ESRI's acquisition, exploration and property advancement efforts will not be successful; risks relating to fluctuations in the price of precious and base metals, the inherently hazardous nature of mining-related activities and uncertainties concerning reserve and recourse estimates as well as those factors discussed in ESRI's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), including ESRI's latest annual report on Form 10-K (SEC File No. 000-54645) filed with the SEC on April 16, 2013, and its other SEC filings including. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company does not intend to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise except as may be required under applicable securities laws.
Cautionary Note to investors concerning estimates of Measured, Indicated and Inferred Resources: The terms "Mineable Reserve," "Measured", "Indicated" and "Inferred" Resources are used herein. Investors are advised and cautioned that such terms are not recognized by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. "Inferred Mineral Resources" have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an Inferred Mineral Resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. Investors are also cautioned not to assume that all or any part of Measured or Indicated Mineral Resources will ever be converted into Mineral Reserves and not to assume that all or any part of a Mineral Resource is economically or legally mineable.
(1) For more information about the merger, please refer to the Company's Current Report on Form 8-K (SEC File No. 000-54645) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 12, 2012, as amended.
(2) Internal estimates, not SEC Guide 7 compliant proven or probable reserves.
(3) Internal estimates, not SEC Guide 7 compliant proven or probable reserves.
For additional information, please contact:
Eastern Resources Inc.