Rockridge Resources (TSX-V: ROCK) President Jordan Trimble & CEO Grant Ewing on Working Towards a 43-101 Compliant Resource at Knife Lake VMS Project
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the President of Rockridge Resources (TSX-V: ROCK), Mr. Jordan Trimble, and the new CEO, Mr. Grant Ewing.
Grant, Jordan, good morning. How are you two?
Jordan Trimble: Doing well, thanks.
Grant Ewing: Good morning.
Gerardo Del Real: Grant, good to have you on. I want to talk the project. I want to talk what attracted you to it and what made you take the gig. Obviously, before we get to that, congratulations first off. Second off, you have quite a bit of experience. You have over 25 years’ experience specifically, I understand, in the copper space. So, I'd love to get to know a little bit more about your background for those that may not be familiar.
Grant Ewing: Yeah, excellent. Vast experience base. I'm a professional geologist by training and then have over 25 years of experience. And the last 10+ have been in senior roles with various mining companies. I've got multi-commodity experience, so not only copper but also significant gold and other metals.
Prior to this I think probably the most significant roles I had was President of Kiska Metals – it was a royalty project generator operating North America-wide primarily, but also had projects internationally – and prior to that Arcadia Mining. Both of those companies we sold for various reasons. So I have a lot of experience as well on the corporate side of things, corporate development and corporate transactions.
Gerardo Del Real: You obviously have the background that knows how to not just develop an asset but actually monetize it, which in this industry is kind of rare. Right? You've done it multiple times. It's always interesting to me that the same guys and gals that are able to develop projects and push them across the finish line and monetize them, it's always the same group. Right? There's not a lot of you out there.
With that being said, what attracted you to the flagship here? Because obviously if you have the background that you have, you're not just going to take any company on if you don't believe you can get it across the finish line, per se.
Grant Ewing: Right, yes. That's definitely the case. I know a few of the board members and the team here at Rockridge, so certainly I felt comfortable with the group and high-quality technical expertise backs the company. So that was a real primary positive for me, joining the group. Rockridge is a nice, clean, new company. That's also quite a neat positive attribute, you've got a great share structure, supportive shareholders, and we're well-financed now to continue with the program we're working on in our core asset, the Knife Lake Property.
And just on the property, VMS deposits in Canada can be very rich, there's world-class deposits in the region where we're exploring the Knife Lake Project. So I think the potential of our core asset is very strong. It's located in a great jurisdiction. The project hasn't seen any meaningful exploration in 20+ years. In those days, copper was trading more or less in the $1.00 to $1.50/lb. range. So I think the metal that we're pursuing, copper, is very attractive in today's market. The jurisdiction, and of course the project, has great exploration potential to grow what's already in existence there, I think.
Gerardo Del Real: Agreed, you mention the fact that this is a VMS style property here. Jordan, the last time you and I spoke, we talked about holes 3, 4, and 5, which, and if I'm not mistaken, and I'm free styling it here, but I think you had something like 4.3% copper or 5% copper equivalent. I think it was over 13 meters. How is the project coming along?
Jordan Trimble: Yeah. So last we spoke we had what was a barn burner hole, as you highlighted there. Just over 5% copper equivalent over 13.2 meters, and relatively shallow. And that was in a new zone of the deposit, so we're expecting that will have a positive impact on the historical resource. You're well aware we are working towards a 43-101 compliant resource estimate, that's going to be a big milestone for the company coming up here in the summer following that summer work program, as Grant mentioned, fully funded for all of that.
So the project – albeit a new project in the company, as you recall we got the deal done to bring this project in late last year – we're having some early success with it. As Grant pointed out and just to re-highlight what we're trying to do here, this project has not had a lot of recent exploration, it was more or less orphaned for the better part of the last 20 years, and that's really what excites us.
I think Grant coming on with his pedigree, and I think he was being modest, he's been involved with a number of change of controls, including Kiska, which was bought out by AuRico. And AuRico, which he was working with, was subsequently bought out by Centerra for $300 million. So Grant knows a thing or two about M&A in the space. And as a geologist he's been involved with a number of discoveries and been involved with work programs and drill programs that have expanded historical resources.
So at Knife Lake here you have this historical resource, not a lot of recent work that was done in the last 20 years. That's what we're doing, we're going back in on a project that's had a fair bit of historical work, not a lot of recent exploration methodology applied to the project and we're giving it a new look. As the last few holes show we're having success. We're finding very, very rich mineralization near surface.
What's exciting now going forward, and this is what the summer program, which will consist of some groundwork and some geophysics, we're just going through the final planning of that right now. We will be looking for refining regional targets, but also looking for targets to drill at depth. As we've talked, Gerardo, in the past, it's important to note that this historical deposit is a remobilized VMS, so it's come from a primary source. What you see there, we think is just the tip of the iceberg. So going in and finding the source of that mineralization, or finding clusters, as we know VMS deposits typically do not occur in isolation. So given that you just have this one deposit at a topographic high, we think there's good potential to find more in the area.
So I think there's a lot more value to be unlocked at this project. Grant is coming in, a new set of eyes to look at it, which I think will help unlock that value quicker. And also just note too, and Grant's going to be helping out with this, as we've talked about in the past, Gerardo, this Knife Lake project being a core asset, it's really what we believe will be the first of several acquisitions as we continue to build the project portfolio in the company. As we know, it's been a tough metals market in particular in the last, call it, 6, 7 months. There's some amazing opportunities out there to bolster the portfolio. So we are actively looking at other projects.
So keep an eye out down the road for additional projects and acquisitions.
Gerardo Del Real: Well said, Jordan. I'll counter your 6, 7 months for almost 6, 7 years. It should be fun when it turns. We know the money is made by buying low. You can't buy low and sell high if you don't buy low. And obviously, with copper being where it's at right now, the fundamentals are so supportive that I think once these trade wars kind of simmer and we get some clarity on that front, we're going to be off to the races, especially in regards to copper. I think, as you well know, the electrification of everything is a real mega trend that keeps intensifying by the day.
So great time to come on. Grant, congratulations again. I think your timing is impeccable and I'm looking forward to working with the two of you to get this project moved forward.
Jordan Trimble: Perfect. Thanks a lot, Gerardo.
Grant Ewing: Yeah, excellent. Very neat to talk to you today, Gerardo.
Gerardo Del Real: Thanks for your time guys
Jordan Trimble: Thank you.