TORONTO, March 25, 2019 /CNW/ - Rubicon Minerals Corporation (TSX: RMX | OTCQX: RBYCF) ("Rubicon" or the "Company") announces that it has filed its Financial Statements and Management's Discussion and Analysis ("MD&A") for the year ended December 31, 2018. The Company confirms that copies of these interim filings can be obtained at www.rubiconminerals.com or www.sedar.com.
Financial Highlights from the year ended December 31, 2018
- Cash position: As of December 31, 2018, the Company had cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments of approximately $15.4 million.
- Exploration and evaluation expenditures: For the year ended December 31, 2018, the Company spent approximately $24.2 million in expenditures related to underground development, drilling, maintenance and technical consulting fees which were offset by $7.4 million in proceeds recognized from the sale of precious metals. Expenditures were up $11.5 million compared to prior year as the Company ramped up spending on the mill facility for the duration of the bulk sample processing program.
- Raised $16.6 million in financing proceeds: On February 26, 2018 and December 24, 2018, the Company closed a public flow-through share offering of for aggregate gross proceeds of $10.9 million and $5.7 million respectively to fund ongoing operations.
- General and administrative expenses (including salaries and benefits, and consulting and professional fees): The Company spent approximately $5.1 million on expenditures related to general and administrative, salaries and benefits, and consulting and professional fees in 2018. Expenditures were up $0.9 million compared to 2017 primarily related to consulting and professional fees as well as higher overhead and compensation expenses.
Rubicon had a successful 2018 campaign, achieving several significant milestones to de-risk the Phoenix Gold Project. Some of the key milestones achieved include:
- Developed a new structural interpretation and geological model of the F2 Gold Deposit, showing more continuity of gold mineralization within the HiTi Basalt Units and potential amenability of bulk mining methods.
- Delivered the new 2018 Mineral Resource Estimate, showing material increases in tonnes ("t"), grade, and ounces on all mineral resource categories.
- Completed test trial mining of more than 35,000 t of mineralized material and demonstrated the amenability of the sublevel longhole bulk mining method resulting in $7.4 million in net proceeds realized from the sale of precious metals.
- Successful re-start of the Project mill, achieving peak throughput rates of approximately 1,540 tonnes per day (based on a 22-hour mill availability) and gold recoveries of 95.1%, with 43.2% of gold recovered via gravity circuit, during the bulk sample processing program.
- Positive bulk sample reconciliation results compared to the resource block model estimates of the planned stopes, validating the new geological model and 2018 Mineral Resource Estimate.
- Completed 20,000 metres ("m") of orientated infill drilling to improve the mineral resource categories of the 2018 Mineral Resource Estimate.
- CPPIB Credit Investments Inc. ("CPPIB Credit"), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board agreed to transfer its $12.0 million existing secured loan facility with Rubicon ("Loan Facility") to Sprott Private Resource Lending (Collector), L.P. ("Sprott"). In addition, Sprott has amended the Loan Facility to adjust the minimum cash requirement from $5.0 million to $1.0 million in exchange for warrants, improving the Company's financial flexibility.
- During the year ended December 31, 2018 the Company commissioned a metal effluent treatment plant for the purposes of discharging water from the tailings management facility ("TMF") and was able to discharge water from the TMF under existing permits as it continued to comply with all environmental discharge requirements.
The Company believes its 2018 achievements have significantly advanced the Project and provides management with a solid foundation to continue advancing the Project towards a potential commercially viable operation. As of March 22, 2019, the Company had cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments of approximately $11.0 million. In management's view, the Company has sufficient financial resources to the Company's 2019 planned activities as follows:
- Produce an updated NI 43-101 Mineral Resource Estimate in the first half of 2019, based on the 20,000 m of orientated diamond drill information from the 2018 Exploration Program;
- Release a Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA"), at a minimum, for the Phoenix Gold Project in second half of 2019, based on the updated NI 43-101 Mineral Resource Estimate. The PEA will include a preliminary life of mine plan, updated Project economics and a preliminary production profile. The PEA will build upon the results of the 2018 bulk sample program and the Company's mine and mill performance during the test trial mining.
- Continue exploration throughout 2019 with up to 20,000 m of orientated diamond drilling, predominantly focused on growing mineral resources and advancing the Company's understanding of the high-grade mineralization potential at depth.
- Within the Phoenix Gold Property claim boundary, the Company has identified exploration targets within 2 kilometres from the Phoenix Gold Project shaft and surface infrastructure, which the Company intends to explore in 2019. Rubicon believes these targets have strong mineral potential based on historical mining and exploration.
Please refer to our Financial Statements and MD&A for the year ended December 31, 2018 for further details.
About Rubicon Minerals Corporation
Rubicon Minerals Corporation is an advanced gold exploration company that owns the Phoenix Gold Project, located in the prolific Red Lake gold district in northwestern Ontario, Canada. Additionally, Rubicon controls over 285 square kilometres of prime exploration ground in Red Lake and more than 900 square kilometres of mineral property interests in the emerging Long Canyon gold district that straddles the Nevada-Utah border in the United States. Rubicon's shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (RMX) and the OTCQX markets (RBYCF). For more information, please visit our website at www.rubiconminerals.com.
RUBICON MINERALS CORPORATION
George Ogilvie, P.Eng.
President, CEO, and Director
Cautionary Statement regarding Forward-Looking Statements and other Cautionary Notes
This news release contains statements that constitute "forward-looking statements" and "forward looking information" (collectively, "forward-looking statements") within the meaning of applicable Canadian and United States securities legislation. Generally, these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "believes", "intends", "may", "will", "should", "plans", "anticipates", "potential", "expects", "estimates", "forecasts", "budget", "likely", "goal" and similar expressions or statements that certain actions, events or results may or may not be achieved or occur in the future. In some cases, forward-looking information may be stated in the present tense, such as in respect of current matters that may be continuing, or that may have a future impact or effect. Forward-looking statements reflect our current expectations and assumptions, and are subject to a number of known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any anticipated future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to statements regarding the results of the new geological and structural models and test trial mining and the potential amenability of certain mining methods, the anticipated contents of the PEA, the mineral potential and exploration accessibility of identified exploration targets, the planned exploration of such exploration targets, and the implications of the results of the bulk sample program in respect of the 2018 Mineral Resource Estimate.
Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made and represent management's best judgment based on facts and assumptions that management considers reasonable. If such opinions and estimates prove to be incorrect, actual and future results may be materially different than expressed in the forward-looking statements.
Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Rubicon to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such factors include, among others: possible variations in mineralization, grade or recovery or throughput rates; uncertainty of mineral resources, inability to realize exploration potential, mineral grades and mineral recovery estimates; actual results of current exploration activities; actual results of reclamation activities; uncertainty of future operations, delays in completion of exploration plans for any reason including insufficient capital, delays in permitting, and labour issues; conclusions of future economic or geological evaluations; changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined; failure of equipment or processes to operate as anticipated; accidents and other risks of the mining industry; delays and other risks related to operations; timing and receipt of regulatory approvals; the ability of Rubicon and other relevant parties to satisfy regulatory requirements; the ability of Rubicon to comply with its obligations under material agreements including financing agreements; the availability of financing for proposed programs and working capital requirements on reasonable terms; the ability of third-party service providers to deliver services on reasonable terms and in a timely manner; risks associated with the ability to retain key executives and key operating personnel; cost of environmental expenditures and potential environmental liabilities; dissatisfaction or disputes with local communities or First Nations or Aboriginal Communities; failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated; market conditions and general business, economic, competitive, political and social conditions; our ability to generate sufficient cash flow from operations or obtain adequate financing to fund our capital expenditures and working capital needs and meet our other obligations; the volatility of our stock price, and the ability of our common stock to remain listed and traded on the TSX.
Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and Rubicon disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, except as required by applicable securities laws. Readers are advised to carefully review and consider the risk factors identified in the Company's annual information form dated March 22, 2018 under the heading "Risk Factors" and in other continuous disclosure documents of the Company filed at www.sedar.com for a discussion of the factors that could cause Rubicon's actual results, performance and achievements to be materially different from any anticipated future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Readers are further cautioned that the foregoing list of assumptions and risk factors is not exhaustive and it is recommended that prospective investors consult the more complete discussion of Rubicon's business, financial condition and prospects that is included in this news release. The forward-looking statements contained herein are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.
Cautionary Note to U.S. Readers Regarding Estimates of Measured, Indicated and Inferred Resources
This news release uses the terms "Measured" and "Indicated" Mineral Resources and "Inferred" Mineral Resources. The Company advises U.S. investors that while these terms are recognized and required by Canadian securities administrators, they are not recognized by the SEC. The estimation of "Measured" and "Indicated" Mineral Resources involves greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic feasibility than the estimation of Proven and Probable Reserves. The estimation of "Inferred" resources involves far greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic viability than the estimation of other categories of resources. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of a "Measured", "Inferred" or "Indicated" mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category.
Under Canadian rules, estimates of "inferred mineral resources" may not form the basis of feasibility studies, pre-feasibility studies or other economic studies, except in prescribed cases, such as in a preliminary economic assessment under certain circumstances. The SEC normally only permits issuers to report mineralization that does not constitute "reserves" as in-place tonnage and grade without reference to unit measures. Under U.S. standards, mineralization may not be classified as a "reserve" unless the determination has been made that the mineralization could be economically and legally produced or extracted at the time the reserve determination is made. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of a "measured", "indicated" or "inferred" mineral resource exists or is economically or legally mineable. Information concerning descriptions of mineralization and resources contained herein may not be comparable to information made public by U.S. companies subject to the reporting and disclosure requirements of the SEC.
The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release