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TSX-V:CCW
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Canada Silver Cobalt Works aiming to be a big player in Canada's heartland for the two metals, and targeting EV battery market

Snapshot

The cobalt camp in northern Ontario is one of the few places globally where silver and cobalt can be mined together as primary metals

Canada Silver Cobalt Works Inc. -

Quick facts: Canada Silver Cobalt Works Inc.

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TSX-V:CCW

Price: 0.275 CAD

Market Cap: $35.22 m
  • Located in the birthplace of Canadian hard rock mining
  • Experienced team
  • Vertically integrated operation

What Canada Silver Cobalt Works does:

Canada Silver Cobalt Works Inc (CVE:CCW) (OTCMKTS:CCWOF) is strategically positioned in Canada's heartland aiming to become a leader in the silver-cobalt space but is also pivoting to focus on other critical energy metals used for electric vehicles (EV).

The cobalt camp in the Gowganda district of northern Ontario is one of the few places globally where silver and cobalt can be mined together as primary metals because cobalt is usually a by-product of copper and nickel mining.

The firm's goal is to resume mining at the formerly producing Castle and Beaver mines, which generated 9.5 million ounces silver (and 300,000 pounds of cobalt) and 7.1 million ounces silver (and 139,000 pounds cobalt) respectively. 

The group's flagship asset is the Castle mine - the only permitted underground asset in the Ontario camp - which still has all three existing shafts, and the 78 square kilometres Castle property where only silver in a small area was targeted.

It also has the Beaver and Violet cobalt/silver properties located in the township of Coleman. Violet, which hosts five known veins, produced a total of 897,291 ounces of silver from 1919-1925 after which mining operations were suspended until 1951/2. Production from 1950s activity was grouped in with other mines in the Cobalt camp.

The company made its move into EV battery metals exploration in 2021 and, as an adjunct, it is also developing its Re-2OX technology, which is a process designed to efficiently extract cobalt and produce cobalt sulphate to specifications required by battery sector end-users

How is it doing:

Canada Silver Cobalt Works has been undergoing a refocus in 2021, looking to develop into both a pure precious metal play, centered on the Robinson Zone from the former high-grade Castle Silver Mine, and with an energy metals focus following the acquisition of a batch of electric vehicle (EV) battery material properties in Quebec and Ontario.

In February the company revealed that it had acquired, including by staking, over 39,000 hectares of properties in the two provinces, which are prospective for energy metals in a strategic acquisition. 

All of the acquired properties (which include copper, nickel, cobalt targets) have surface showings that have been sampled or have massive gravity anomalies. For example, the Lowney Lac Edouard South property - a gravity target - in Quebec sits adjacent to Rio Tinto Mines property, while the newly acquired Ontario property at Henry Lake is within 25 kilometers of the Sudbury basin where Glencore and Vale have multiple mines and smelters which have been in operation for over 100 years.

The aim in February was to transfer the 16 assets, in exchange for shares, to another public company to capitalize on the current growing EV market, and to distribute the shares by way of a dividend to Canada Silver Cobalt's shareholders.

However, in a statement on April 20, Canada Silver Cobalt CEO Frank Bassa announced that it was the company's intention to keep the EV assets and instead transfer its non-silver assets, in exchange for shares, to another public company to be identified by the company and to do a proportional distribution of shares by way of dividends to shareholders.

In that April 20 statement, Canada Silver Cobalt said it completed geophysical airborne surveys on five of the EV properties in Quebec, with a drill program scheduled on the B2 property during the second quarter. The company, which has now secured 689 claims covering 38,129.4 hectares of prosperous ground, said it has budgeted $2.2 million for exploration for these properties this year.

It said the airborne surveys were aimed at measuring the gravity and magnetic field. The company is seeking to identify the magmatic reservoir potentially hosting significant amounts of nickel- and copper-sulphide masses at the base of the magmatic chamber. It said the final reports are pending, and details will be disclosed once received and evaluated, and the information will be used to prepare subsequent drill programs. 

Canada Silver Cobalt noted that it has started preliminary geological sampling on the B2 and Grand Portage properties. The B2 property option has shown high-grade copper in the discovery showing and a maiden drill program is expected to start by the 2Q to test the mineralized structure identified. Mineralization appears to be associated with a structural shear. Observations from the channel sampling indicated the property deserved additional work and a ground magnetic orientation survey was completed. 

The company said a total of 41 channel samples with three blanks and standards were sent to the SGS Laboratory in Québec. The highest grade came from the gossan sample with 17.53% copper, 0.245 % nickel, and 0.026 % cobalt, while channel sample results range from 25 to 2,887 parts per million (ppm) copper, 11 to 3,452 ppm nickel, and 11 to 385ppm cobalt.

At Grand Portage, the company said geological sampling with a portable drill with 30-centimetres depth capability using (AQ) drill core has confirmed the presence of mineralization of interest at the surface. The mineralization associated with mafic-ultramafic blobs deserves additional work.  

Five core samples with 1 standard were sent to the AGAT laboratory in Ontario. The highest grade came from sample #10404 with 1.63% nickel, 0.61% copper and 0.068% cobalt. Samples range from 0.02 to 0.61% copper, from 0.05 to 1.63 % nickel, from 0.011 to 0.06% cobalt, from 1 to 7 g/t silver, from 0.001 to 0.04 g/t gold and from trace palladium 0.002 to 0.007 g/t.

On the precious metal drilling front, on April 26, Canada Silver Cobalt reported high-grade drill results from the Robinson Zone project at its Castle mine in Gowganda, Ontario, which underlined the potential to expand mineralization there. 

The latest wedge hole hit an impressive 51,612 grams per ton (g/t) silver at the second vein (Vein 2) over a length of 0.41 meter (m), which was sunk within 60m of the so-called Robinson Zone Discovery hole.  The latter hole hit the highest-grade silver to date at Robinson Zone, at 89,853 g/t silver over a true width of 5 to 7cm. 

Away from drilling, at the end of March, Canada Silver Cobalt revealed that it would work together with Granada Gold Mines to assess using the company's proprietary hydrometallurgical Re-2Ox process on the rare earth and alkali metals, which have been found at Granada's gold mine project in Quebec.

Early analysis indicates the potential for the Re-2Ox process to be used for the "extraction of rare earth and alkali metals, which have recently been found at the Granada Gold Mine property", the companies said. The Re-2OX technology is a process designed to efficiently extract cobalt and produce cobalt sulphate to specifications required by battery sector end-users. It has been used to produce a cobalt sulphate compound at SGS Canada for end-use in lithium-ion batteries at Canada Silver Cobalt's Castle property from a high-grade silver, cobalt and arsenic gravity concentrate.

On March 17, Canada Silver Cobalt reported that preliminary bench-scale testing involving the Re-2Ox process had "yielded excellent results", with the work so far having produced a first concentrate to then be processed using its proprietary process into a direct end-product for electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing. The initial test work was carried out on 50 kilograms of tailings from drill samples from the firm's Beaver mine in the Gowganda silver district of northern Ontario.

In the boardroom, on April 1, Canada Silver Cobalt announced that Ryan Webster, who has 15 years' experience as a finance professional in the mining industry, had been hired as the chief financial officer (CFO) with effect from that date, replacing interim CFO Robert Guanzon. Formerly, Webster served as a consultant providing corporate finance services to a variety of clients, including contract CFO services to Blue Thunder Mining Inc.

Inflection points:

  • Further drilling results for both precious and energy metals
  • News on Granada Gold Mines venture to assess the Re-2Ox process
  • Further details of plans to transfer non-silver assets to another public company

What the boss says:

In the company's April 20 statement, Canada Silver Cobalt CEO Frank Basa said: "It is Canada Silver Cobalt's intention to transfer its non-silver assets, in exchange for shares, to another public company to be identified by the company, and to do a proportional distribution of shares by way of dividends to Canada Silver Cobalt's shareholders."

"This transaction will enhance shareholder value by offering exposure to two strong developing market forces with increased investor focus to the potential that the company sees with a pure precious metal play with the Robinson Zone from the former high-grade Castle Silver Mine area in Gowganda, Ontario and with the EV properties that have been recently acquired in Quebec and Ontario," he added.

Contact the author at jon.hopkins@proactiveinvestors.com

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