Will silver offer you the same protection as gold? Some analysts say silver can protect you in times of global turmoil. It's widely considered a safe way to store value, similar to gold. In addition, silver typically has volatile prices, which can benefit investors.
Yet, silver is more than a precious metal used to hedge against inflation and uncertainty. It also has industrial uses that create a steady demand. For example, in 2021, approximately 508.2 million ounces of silver were used in industrial fabrication, such as for producing solar panels and automotive electrical systems. In addition, investors have options; they can invest in silver bullion, commodities markets, or silver mining companies to capitalize on the precious metal. So how will you profit from silver?
Southern Silver Exploration (TSXV:SSV
,OTCQX:SSVFF) is an exploration mining company focused on creating value for shareholders from its unique silver assets. The company’s projects are located throughout North America, strategically positioned in politically safe mining jurisdictions
. Its flagship project, Cerro Las Minitas, is located in Durango, Mexico, and is one of the top high-grade, undeveloped, silver projects in the world. Mexico is known for containing high-grade silver
deposits, and Southern Silver Exploration’s flagship project is an undeveloped asset with excellent upside potential.
Durango has attracted several mining companies due to its largely untapped potential. Fresnillo (OTCMKTS:FNLPF), SSR Mining (NASDAQ:SSRM), Coeur (NYSE:CDE) and Avino (TSX:ASM) are some of the mining companies with good assets in the area. These projects, along with the region's political stability and rich geological formations provide confidence in the area’s viability for further development.
The 100-percent-owned Cerro Las Minitas Project is a silver-lead-zinc property covering 340 square kilometers, with the potential to become one of the top high-grade silver mines in the world. The 2021 resource update, at a US$60 per ton NSR cut-off, features an indicated mineral resource equating to 137 million ounces of silver equivalent,or 2.3 billion pounds of zinc equivalent, consisting of 42.1 million ounces of silver, 28 thousand ounces of gold, 44 million pounds of copper, 358 million pounds of lead, and 895 million pounds of zinc.
An inferred mineral resource equates to 198 million ounces of silver equivalent or 3.3 billion pounds of zinc equivalent, consisting of 73.6 million ounces of silver, 78 thousand ounces of gold, 98 million pounds of copper, 500 million pounds of lead, and 1,009 million pounds of zinc.
These estimates place the asset in the world’s top five silver mines.
Southern Silver Exploration has created a mine life of over 15 years, which will create enduring value for a third-party that may acquire the mine in the future. In addition, to date, the company’s cost of exploration per ounce of silver is C$0.09, which is much lower than its competition. The company has two additional, 100-percent-owned assets, the Oro Copper-Gold Project and the Hermanas Silver Gold-Silver project. These assets expose shareholders to additional markets beyond silver. These two assets are located in New Mexico, USA.
An experienced management team is leading Southern Silver Exploration toward its goals. Lawrence Page, president and director, has decades of experience working with precious metals and other natural resource companies, and now leads Southern Silver Exploration. Robert W.J. Macdonald, vice president of exploration, has overseen silver and gold projects throughout North America. The management team includes additional specialists and experts who help advance Southern Silver Exploration’s goals.
Multiple members of the management team have experience leading projects within Mexico. These leaders have an established network of relationships with Mexican nationals who work with the company in all aspects of exploration and development. Southern Silver Exploration is proud of its positive relationship with the local government.
- Southern Silver Exploration is a silver-focused exploration company with three, 100-percent-owned projects in North America, including an undeveloped asset that’s poised to become one of the world’s top silver mines.
- The company’s flagship project, Cerro Las Minitas in Durango, Mexico, has an indicated resource of 42.1 million ounces of silver and an inferred resource of 73.6 million ounces of silver, placing it firmly in the top five silver assets on the planet.
- Cerro Las Minitas is located in a safe jurisdiction that has attracted other mining companies hoping to discover prolific deposits.
- Two additional 100-percent-owned assets expose investors to copper and gold markets.
- Southern Silver Exploration is led by a team of experienced mining professionals, who bring their specific expertise and established relationships with local governments to help the company achieve its goals.
Cerro Las Minitas Silver-Lead-Zinc Project
The company’s flagship project is set to become one of the world’s most productive, high-grade silver mines. A resource estimate completed in 2021 indicates the presence of an indicated resource of 42.1 million ounces of silver and an inferred resource of 73.6 million ounces of silver.
The company filed an NI 43-101 technical report featuring the highlights of its preliminary economic assessment for the project as follows:
- Robust Project Economics: an after-tax NPV of 8 percent of US$220 million (C$302 million); after-tax NPV of 5 percent of US$349 million (C$480 million) and project IRR of 17.9 percent (using base-case metal pricing for silver at $21.95/oz, copper at $3.78/lb, lead at $0.94/lb and zinc at $1.33/lb);
- Large-scale Underground Mining Operation with a 15-year Mine life with an annual average plant feed of 14.2 million ounces silver equivalent (inc. 5.8 million ounces silver);
- High-Revenue Project: Base-case gross revenues total US$3.7 billion with silver representing 42 percent of revenues, and zinc representing 39 percent of revenues. The project has an initial capex of US$341 million;
- Well-located Project: In a mining-friendly jurisdiction with excellent infrastructure in southeast Durango state, Mexico; and
- Further Exploration Upside: Drilling through to August 2022 has confirmed mineralized extensions to the Mina La Bocona and Skarn Front deposits that have not been incorporated into the current resource model. Other deposits remain open laterally and to depth and remain to be explored.
- Fully Permitted and Licensed Operation: The company has all the necessary environmental permits, including social license initiatives with the local Ejido.
- Significant Exploration Completed: Southern Silver Exploration has spent US$30 million in exploration to date, which has resulted in over 178 drill holes, covering 80,000 meters throughout the property.
- Adjacent Properties Acquired: The company has acquired nearby properties to expand the available resources by exploring areas that have received little to no exploration.
- Millions of Ounces of Ore: The project has an indicated 42.1 million ounces of silver with an indicated grade reaching 347 g/t silver equivalents. The project also contains an indicated 895 million pounds of zinc and 358 million pounds of lead.
Oro Copper-Gold Project
The 100-percent-owned asset is located in New Mexico, United States, and contains multiple identified targets that provide investors with exposure to copper. The project covers 22.4 square kilometers, comprising eight mineral patents and two state leases. An exploration program is underway, and airborne survey results have defined potential copper-gold porphyry targets.
- Current Exploration Program: The company has completed a four-hole, 4,000-meter core hole program to explore suspected copper-gold deposits further.
- Assay Results: Assays from the first two holes returned broad intervals of anomalous copper and molybdenum mineralization. Assays are pending for the two final holes
- Favorable Geography: The Oro Project has the potential to lead to an extensive porphyry discovery and contains near-surface gold targets.
- Historic Drill Holes Inadequate: The area has received limited exploration, and it’s believed that historical drilling programs terminated too early or were drilled too widely to discover the copper-gold mineralization that has been identified through modern exploration techniques.
Hermanas Gold-Silver Project
The newly acquired project has favorable geology that may contain an extensive epithermal gold-silver vein system. However, limited historic drilling leaves the project area largely unexplored. The asset has been optioned by Southern Silver Exploration to acquire 100 percent of the project.
- Exploration Programs Planned: The project area has received limited exploration, creating exciting potential.
- Assays Indicate Potential at Depth: Completed surveys indicated high-level textures that suggest great potential at depth. In addition, multiple occurrences of anomalous silver and gold metals will help identify drill targets.
Lawrence Page - President and Director
Lawrence Page obtained his law degree from the University of British Columbia in 1964. He was called to the bar of British Columbia in 1965, where he has continued practicing in natural resource law and corporate and securities law. Through his experience with natural resource companies; and, in particular, precious metals development, Page has established a unique relationship with financiers, geologists, and consultants. He has been counsel for public companies which have discovered and developed producing mines in North America. Specifically, he has been a director and officer of companies that have discovered and brought to fruition the David Bell and Page Williams mines in Ontario, the Snip, Eskay Creek, and Mascot Gold Mines in British Columbia, as well as the discovery of the Penasquito Mine in Mexico. Page is the principal of the Manex Resource Group of Vancouver, which provides administrative, financial, corporate, corporate finance, and geological services to several public companies in the mineral resource sector. He currently serves as a director of four public companies, including Bravada Gold, Southern Silver Exploration, Equity Metals, and Valterra Resource.
Robert W.J. Macdonald - Vice-president of Exploration
Robert Macdonald is currently the vice-president of geological services for the Manex Resource Group; and, in such capacity, has been an executive for several publicly listed companies, including Equity Metals, Homestake Resource, formerly Bravo Gold, and Southern Silver Exploration. Macdonald served as exploration manager for Valterra Resource, Duncastle Gold, and Fortune River Resource. He has overseen the exploration of many projects throughout North America including the discovery and delineation of the high-grade 1.2 million ounces Homestake Ridge gold-silver deposit in Northern British Columbia. Macdonald is currently advancing Southern Silver’s Cerro Las Minitas silver-lead-zinc project in Durango State, Mexico. Macdonald graduated with a bachelor of science degree, with honors, from Memorial University of Newfoundland in 1990, after which he earned a master of science degree from the University of British Columbia in 1999. Over his career in geosciences, Macdonald’s work has focused on vein and intrusion-related gold systems, volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS), and epithermal environments. Before joining Manex, Macdonald worked as a geologist with the British Columbia Geological Survey and Teck Exploration on Alaska, Peru and British Columbia projects.
Graham Thatcher - Chief Financial Officer
Graham Thatcher moved from London, England, to Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2006. Specializing in financial reporting and auditing across a breadth of business sectors in the UK and Canada, he brings extensive experience operating with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and paperless systems. He is also a senior accountant at Manex Resource Group, which provides administrative, financial, corporate, corporate finance and geological services to several public companies in the mineral resource sector. Before this, he worked in public practice at Smythe Ratcliffe, focusing on companies in the mining and exploration sector. Thatcher obtained a bachelor of arts in economics, with honors, from Lancaster University in 1995, which included a one-year program at the University of British Columbia. He is also a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and a volunteer board member and treasurer at Heritage Hall Preservation Society, a non-profit charitable organization whose mandate is to restore and manage Heritage Hall, a landmark building located in Vancouver.
Arie Page - Corporate Secretary
Arie Page obtained her law degree in 2004 and was called to the bar of British Columbia in 2005. Page has worked with public resource companies in the minerals sector for over 14 years. Currently, she serves as corporate secretary to several reporting issuers, including Bravada Gold, Pacific Ridge Exploration, Southern Silver Exploration., Equity Metals, Valterra Resource and Velocity Minerals.
Roger Scammel - Director
Roger Scammell has 40 years of experience in the mining and exploration industry in North America, México and Guatemala, principally with epithermal gold-silver, polymetallic base metal, and nickel and coal deposits. He was the country manager of México for Teck and its Mexican subsidiary, Minera Teck, from 1992 to 2002. Under his direction, Minera Teck discovered the 72-million-tonne San Nicolas volcanogenic massive sulfide deposit in Zacatecas, México and the El Limon gold skarn in Guerrero, México. From 2004 until December 2010, he was initially the vice-president of exploration and later president of Scorpio Mining and its Mexican subsidiary Minera Cosalá. During this time, he was responsible for the administration and execution of the exploration, development and initial production of the Nuestra Señora polymetallic silver mine in Sonora, México, supervising the construction of the 1,400-tonnes-per-day flotation mill.
Eugene Spiering - Director
Eugene Spiering is an exploration geologist with over 30 years of international experience in mineral exploration and senior-level project management in the Western United States, South America and Europe. As vice-president of exploration with Rio Narcea Gold Mines, he participated in every aspect of the mining industry, from discovery through project development and production of the El Valle gold and Aguablanca nickel mines in Spain. He was previously vice-president of exploration for Quaterra Resources and Duncastle Gold. Spiering is a registered member of the Society of Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration and a fellow member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Nigel Bunting - Director
Nigel Bunting is based in London and is an active participant in several public and private resource ventures. He is a director of Bravada Gold and Southern Silver Exploration, both companies quoted on the TSXV exchange. Bunting identifies early-stage opportunities in the resource sector and arranges financings to advance projects to the public market. He is a director of Anglia Registrars, trading as Inform Direct, one of the UK’s leading cloud-based technology companies relating to company formation, administration and secretarial services. Bunting is also a director of MFB Corporate Member, an insurance underwriter at Lloyds of London.
Peter Cheesbrough- Director
Peter Cheesbrough is president of the exploration division of The Electrum Group. He has over 30 years of experience as a senior financial executive of public and private companies in various industries, including mining. He was the chief financial officer of Echo Bay Mines. Most recently, Cheesbrough was chief financial officer of ZeaChem, and the executive vice-president and chief financial officer for CIBER, a global information technology consulting, services and outsourcing company listed on the NYSE. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta.
Gina Jones - Director
Gina Jones is the chief financial officer and chief compliance officer of PenderFund Capital Management. Previously, Jones was the chief operating officer and chief financial officer of an independent brokerage firm in Vancouver, also serving as CFO for its US subsidiary. Before that, Jones was CFO at two Vancouver investment dealers. She holds a bachelor’s of commerce degree from UBC, articled with PricewaterhouseCoopers, and is a chartered professional accountant, chartered accountant and has a corporate finance specialty designation. In addition, she holds an ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors.
Russell Ball - Director
Russell Ball is the former chief executive officer and executive chair of Calibre Mining. Previously, Ball was executive vice-president and chief financial officer of Goldcorp, a role he assumed in March 2016 after initially joining Goldcorp in 2013 and serving as executive vice-president of capital projects, strategy and corporate development, including oversight of their primary growth projects. Before his role with Goldcorp, he served in varying capacities at Newmont Mining for almost 20 years, culminating in his appointment as executive vice-president and chief financial officer. He currently serves on the Trevali Mining and CopperBank Resources boards.