Mammoth Resources CEO Thomas Atkins provides insight into the struggling gold market and shares the company’s progress at its Tenoriba project in Mexico’s Sierra Madre gold belt.
In the interview below, Atkins talks about the Sierra Madre’s unique geological features and the discovery potential it holds. He also discusses the struggles gold companies have faced over the past five years and why he believes the market is ready to turn around.
Below is a transcript of our interview with Mammoth Resources CEO Thomas Atkins. It has been edited for clarity and brevity.
Investing News Network: Please give our investor audience an overview of Mammoth Resources and its Tenoriba gold-silver project in Mexico.
Mammoth Resources CEO Thomas Atkins: Mammoth Resources is a gold-silver mineral exploration company operating out of the prolific Sierra Madre gold belt in Mexico. The Sierra Madre has been an area of interest since colonial times and in some remote locations in the mountains you can can see evidence of artisanal mining from that time.
INN: What attracted you to Tenoriba?
TA: It has all the hallmarks of a prolific mineralizing geological system known as a high-sulfidation system. In this area particularly, this type of system is known to host 4.5 million-ounce deposits. When we walked the property, we noticed a lot of vuggy silica, a type of hydrothermal replacement of the host rock with a pitted appearance, throughout the area.
INN: What has been done on the property to date?
TA: In June 2008, the previous operator completed a drill program and 10 out of the 15 holes returned good results. However, the global financial crisis hit and the previous operator couldn’t fulfill its commitments and dropped the project. Then, in 2012, the owners owed US$45,000 in back taxes and were looking for a partner. We walked the property, took some samples and went over all the data. Everything looked good, we struck a deal and have been partners since.
Between 2017 and 2018, we completed 2,500 meters of drilling over a four-kilometer strike length and recovered some potentially economical grades in eight of 11 holes. Our best intersection, length-wise, was 125 metres of 0.5 g/t gold, which is economical in this type of deposit. We also had some rich intercepts grading up to 4.0 g/t gold.
The property is huge, and some of these deposits could contain up to 4 million ounces over a two-square-kilometer area, all within 15 square kilometers of mineralization. To date, we’ve only tested four kilometers out of a six-kilometer trend, and we’re getting results. I don’t want to say it’s like shooting fish in a barrel, as our geophysics and other surface features played a key role in the success of our drill program.
INN: Where is Tenoriba located?
TA: Tenoriba is located in the south-western portion of Chihuahua State in the Sierra Madre gold belt at an elevation of approximately 1,600 meters. Many people think that it’s hot in Mexico year-round, but at this time of the year, temperatures can drop to below freezing at night in the mountains.
INN: Is the jurisdiction politically stable? Have you run into any issues with permitting?
TA: We’ve been successful in getting permitting without any issue and have good relations with the locals. We treat everyone with respect and give back to the community when we can. For example, we’ve bought backpacks and school supplies for the local school.
INN: What’s next for Mammoth Resources and how does that fit into the company’s long-term goals?
TA: We’ve signed an option agreement with Centerra Gold (TSX:CG) and will be working with them on the project. They have our technical information and data and will be providing their expertise and money to help move the property forward. We met them at the conference to plan the next stages of the program and will be announcing those plans soon.
INN: Gold has been struggling for the past five years, why is now a good time to invest?
TA: To put things into context, Mammoth was dormant for two and a half years. No one in the company took a salary for 28 months and any money raised went to maintaining the property.
Over the past five years, the price of gold briefly reached $1,400 per ounce, but until it goes over that, there’s no immediacy to invest. In 2018, the US Federal Reserve (FED) said that they were going to raise interest rates on five occasions. However, you could buy an ETF in the S&P 500 and make a wonderful return, but towards the end of the year, the market was starting to correct itself.
I think we’re at a point in the economic cycle where people are uncertain about the returns the stock market will bring. Maybe earnings are peaking for a lot of companies and now that we’re 10 years into the economic growth cycle, we’re not able to sustain that growth. Traditionally, the FED would reduce interest rates to stimulate the economy and gold typically does well when this happens. Either way, some stimulus needs to be applied to the economy.
INN: Will we be seeing a rise in gold prices?
TA: Absolutely. Central banks and investors have been buying gold because they’re looking for insurance. Money managers are also talking about coming back into gold, and that wasn’t the case last year.
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