Two years ago, McEwen Mining (TSX: MUX; NYSE: MUX) purchased the Black Fox mine complex in northeastern Ontario for US$35 million. The complex, 70 km from Timmins and about 9 km from Matheson, included the Black Fox underground gold mine, a 2,400-tonne-per-day mill, a tailings facility, the past-producing Stock gold mine, and two development projects — Grey Fox and Froome.
The acquisition from Primero Mining also came with US$150 million in tax pools the company could use to shelter future income. (Those tax pools are currently worth about US$197 million.) The Toronto-based mining company thinks the deal was a steal.
Primero had purchased the property from Brigus Gold in 2014 for more than $300 million and assumed liabilities of about $140 million. It then spent another $120 million on capex and exploration, McEwen Mining says.
Last year, the Black Fox mine contributed 48,848 oz. gold-equivalent to the company’s coffers and in the first half of 2019 churned out another 18,373 ounces. Black Fox has a mine life of about two years remaining based on proven and probable reserves of 89,000 oz. gold-equivalent.
But it’s the exploration upside at the complex, which is situated along a 15-km section of the Destor Porcupine Fault, that most interests Sylvain Guerard, the company’s senior vice president of exploration.
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