An explorer of silica sands, Perpetual Resources Limited (ASX:PEC) is determined to produce high purity silica for both national and international markets. Owner of four distinct project areas, PEC has one of the most attractive project profiles of ASX-listed explorers and producers. The Project portfolio includes Beharra Project, Sargon Project, Eneabba and Eneabba North Project.
With a strong tailwind of project development programs, experienced management and strong cash position, PEC seems to be well positioned to sail through current COVID-19 crisis.
PEC onboarded a new Executive Chairman Mr. Julian Babarczy, effective from 1 April 2020, at a time when the company is likely entering a rapid growth phase. As the Board aims to maintain the desired rate of organisational activity with a suitable executive capacity within PEC, Mr. Babarczy’s transition to an executive role has been conducted at the ideal time.
Introducing Mr. Julian Babarczy- PEC’s New Executive Chair
Mr. Babarczy has been the Non-Executive Chairman of the Company since June 2018. He is a finance industry professional with a career spanning 22 years, wherein almost 12 years he was a key member of Regal Funds Management - one of Australia’s leading actively managed hedge funds.
Besides being a key member of the investment and leadership team at Regal, he undertook a range of roles, including Analyst & Portfolio Manager and Head of Australian Equities, responsible for investments across a range of sectors in listed and unlisted companies.
Currently, he is also a Portfolio Manager for the Regal Emerging Companies strategy.
With extensive experience investing across various sectors, Mr. Babarczy had a particular focus on natural resource investments, making PEC a lucrative opportunity for him.
On the academic excellence front, Mr. Babarczy obtained a Bachelor of Business degree from Monash University, successfully completed the Chartered Financial Analyst program along with a Graduate Diploma in Mineral Exploration Geosciences at Curtin University.
In the coming week, Mr. Babarczy is likely to update shareholders in much more detail, via a letter to shareholders.
Recent Developments at PEC’s Flagship Asset- The Beharra Project
At the Beharra silica sand project, recent Auger drilling had affirmed the presence of high purity, extensive silica sands. PEC recently concluded the maiden Aircore drilling program at the project with geological logging of all intervals approaching completion.
The visual logging validates that the project region has extensive white silica sands, spread across a sizable area. This marks a significant milestone for the Company, further lifting the expectation that PEC is entering a rapid growth phase.
The aircore drilling results, along with recent $0.7 million strategic placement, has strengthened PEC’s position for moving towards production phase with finalization of maiden JORC resource and PFS delivery.
In the past, metallurgical beneficiation test work has emphasized that silica from Beharra can be advanced to address the glass production businesses requisites. The product surpasses specification for container and float glass applications (final product - 99.85 per cent SiO2 , ~90 per cent yield).
Leaching and calcination test work had reported up to 99.94 per cent SiO2 (99.992 per cent SiO2 + LOI) and further reduction of iron, aluminium and titanium.
Samples will undergo a lab analysis at Perth’s Nagrom Analytical, upon completion of logging. Once results are received, resource estimation will commence delineating the Company’s inaugural JORC resource.
Along with these, metallurgical beneficiation test work will take place to refine the previously published specifications, adept of being produced from Beharra’s product suite. Initial discussions on prospective product off-take will occur after consultation with end customers for potential product evaluation.
Recently, at $0.015 per share, the Company received commitments for a placement of at least $700k. The capital raising added substantial value for PEC’s shareholders. It also authenticated the continuation of work that is planned in the near term, including:
- conclusion of a maiden JORC resource;
- likely launch of a PFS;
- other relevant approvals from the Government to progress Beharra towards production.
The stock quoted $0.020 after market close on 9 April 2020.
With the global silica sand market projected to reach a CAGR of 6 per cent by 2024, it will be interesting to gauge PEC’s developments at the back of skilled management, lucrative project profile, constant progress at the flagship project and rising silica sand demand.
PEC continues to chase additional project assessment pursuits, even in the current challenging environment.
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