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#BRES Blencowe Resources – Bulk Sample Processing underway at Pilot Plant Facility in China

Blencowe Resources Plc (LSE: BRES) is pleased to report significant progress on the Definitive Feasibility Study (“DFS”) works for the 100%-owned Orom-Cross graphite project in Uganda including commencement of the 600 tonne bulk sample test work at the Jilin Huiyang New Material Technology Company Ltd (“Jiliin”) facility in China.

 

Highlights:

·      Bulk Sample Processing – commencement of the 600-tonne commercial scale processing at Jilin in China marks a significant step forward for Orom-Cross DFS.

·      Off-take Agreements Progress – senior management and potential offtake partners to meet during April 2024 to advance off-take discussions following strong interest in the large-scale test work, samples delivered to date, and Orom-Cross products across the board.

·      Final Sample Delivery – both 96% concentrate and 99.95% spheronised purified graphite (“SPG”) provided from this latest bulk sample testing are expected to be delivered in Q2 2024 to potential off-taker parties in sufficient quantity for review, leading to product qualification and ultimately contracts.

Following the delivery of the 600 tonne bulk sample materials to China, processing has commenced at the Jilin facility. This same facility previously conducted successful bulk metallurgical test work for Blencowe on the 100-tonne Orom-Cross sample in 2023.

Blencowe plans to utilise this product to generate large volumes of both 96% concentrate and 99.95% uncoated SPG product for final qualification with potential off-take partners.  This process aims to maintain the same consistently high quality as previously delivered via this commercial-scale production process in 2023.

Senior management will visit both China and South Korea over the next few weeks to continue discussions on offtake agreements.  Strong interest has been shown to date and Blencowe is confident that this will continue with the ongoing large-scale test work.

 

 

 

Cameron Pearce, Executive Chairman commented;

“This latest 600 tonne bulk sample testing is a critical part of our DFS. We aim to demonstrate that end products maintain the same high quality and purity in commercial scale processing that have already been achieved in all previous testing to date.  The 100 tonne testing last year confirmed this quality maintains to scale and we are confident we can achieve similar results from this latest 600 tonne testing.  Thereafter we will have sufficient quantity of 99.95% SPG to provide for testing with tier one offtakers for product qualification.”

 

Mr Pearce added “We are making significant progress across all DFS objectives.  Orom-Cross is a world class graphite project with unique characteristics, and its potential is becoming increasingly evident as we deliver each milestone.”

 

 

For further information please contact:

 

 

  Blencowe Resources Plc

Sam Quinn

 

www.blencoweresourcesplc.com

Tel: +44 (0)1624 681 250

info@blencoweresourcesplc.com

Investor Relations

Sasha Sethi

Tel: +44 (0) 7891 677 441

sasha@flowcomms.com

 

Tavira Financial 

Jonathan Evans

Tel: +44 (0)20 3192 1733

jonathan.evans@tavira.group

 

#SVML Sovereign Metals Ltd – COMMISSIONING OF SUSTAINABLE FARMING INITIATIVE

SOVEREIGN COMMISSIONS SUSTAINABLE FARMING INITIATIVE IN MALAWI

·      Sovereign has initiated a Conservation Farming Program in Malawi as part of its sustainability initiatives related to the development of Kasiya

·      Local farmers will be trained in sustainable farming techniques to increase maize crop yield; protect soil from erosion and degradation; and to improve long term food security

·      According to the World Food Program, up to 5.4 million people in Malawi are subject to food insecurity, with many Malawians dependent on subsistence agriculture

·      Supporting local communities in addressing their social priorities is a core principle of Sovereign’s ESG Strategy as the company advances the development of Kasiya

·      Sovereign’s owner’s team have previously implemented this program at First Quantum Minerals’ Zambian operations where over 7,000 farmers were participating in the program by 2022

 

Sovereign Metals Limited (ASX:SVM; AIM:SVML) (the Company or Sovereign) is pleased to announce that as part of its Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Strategy in developing its Kasiya Rutile-Graphite Project (Kasiya), it has commissioned a Conservation Farming Program (Program) in Malawi.

A group of people standing in a field Description automatically generated

Figure 1. Sovereign team members conducting conservation farming training

 

 

Malawi’s food security depends on maize (corn); it is the major staple food crop in Malawi with 60% of cropped land devoted to its production. Sovereign has commissioned the initial Program for 90 Malawian maize farmers from within the project area, of which at least 50% are female. The Program is to provide training in low-input-cost, high-yield sustainable farming techniques, with the aim to provide a platform for the farmers to increase yield and productivity therefore helping to reduce malnutrition and poverty.

Conservation farming as a system aims to protect soil from erosion and degradation and increase crop yields. It involves three main principles:

1)   minimum soil disturbance, such as no-till farming,

2)   maintenance of a permanent soil cover, such as cover crops or crop residues and

3)   diversification of plant species, such as crop rotation.

According to the United States Agency for International Development, 80% of Malawi’s population are smallholder farmers with livelihoods based on agriculture and subsistence farming.

This initiative forms part of Sovereign’s ESG Strategy to develop its tier one Kasiya Rutile-Graphite Project while simultaneously restoring and improving the livelihoods of local communities. The Program is being implemented by the Company’s experienced team on the ground, which previously ran a very successful initiative for First Quantum Minerals Limited’s Zambian operations where its conservation farming program has been effectively operating since 2010. Between 2020 and 2022 harvest crops increased by 67% from 6,000 tonnes to 10,000 tonnes of maize, with over 7,000 farmers in the program at the end of 2022.

A group of people standing in a field Description automatically generated

Figure 2. Local communities embracing the conservation farming program



 

 

ENQUIRIES

Frank Eagar (South Africa/Malawi)
Managing Director

+61(8) 9322 6322

Sam Cordin (Perth)
+61(8) 9322 6322

Sapan Ghai (London)
+44 207 478 3900

 

 

Nominated Adviser on AIM and Joint Broker

 

SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP

+44 20 3470 0470

Ewan Leggat

Charlie Bouverat

Harry Davies-Ball

 

 

Joint Brokers

 

Berenberg

+44 20 3207 7800

Matthew Armitt

 

Jennifer Lee

 

 

 

Buchanan

+ 44 20 7466 5000

 

Forward Looking Statement

This release may include forward-looking statements, which may be identified by words such as “expects”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “projects”, “plans”, and similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are based on Sovereign’s expectations and beliefs concerning future events. Forward looking statements are necessarily subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside the control of Sovereign, which could cause actual results to differ materially from such statements. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be correct. Sovereign makes no undertaking to subsequently update or revise the forward-looking statements made in this release, to reflect the circumstances or events after the date of that release.

#FCM First Class Metals Plc – Share Placing

First Class Metals PLC (“First Class Metals” “FCM” or the “Company”) the UK listed metals exploration company seeking economic metal discoveries across its extensive Canadian Schreiber-Hemlo, Sunbeam and Zigzag land holdings, is pleased to announce the completion of a private placing of a total of 3,700,000 ordinary shares of 0.1p each (“Ordinary Shares”) at a price of 4.5p (the “Placing Shares”) with a single existing private investor (“Investor”) raising £166,500 (the “Placing”).

The Placing price of 4.5p represents an 10% premium to the middle market price of Ordinary Shares at the close of business 21 February 2024

Director’s-Stock Lending Agreement

The Company does not presently have sufficient headroom to enable the issue and admission of the Placing Shares which are required to be issued pursuant to the Placing without the production of an FCA approved prospectus. The Company is therefore proposing that the Executive Chairman, James Knowles, transfers to the Company by way of a loan such number of Ordinary Shares held by Mr Knowles as are equal to, in aggregate, to the Placing Shares within the terms of the existing share loan agreement (the “Share Lending Agreement”), to facilitate the placing of the Placing Shares by the Company. This loan involves no consideration being paid or security granted to James Knowles.

The transfer of the Placing Shares to the Investor is expected to be completed on or around 29 February 2024.

The Share Lending Agreement provides for the allotment of an aggregate of 3,700,000 new Ordinary Shares to James Knowles by 30 June 2024 to replace the shares loaned under the terms of the Share Lending Agreement. Application will be made to the LSE and FCA for the admission of the Ordinary Shares to be issued to Mr Knowles at the appropriate time.

No further fees over and above the amount charged by the directors in the announcement of the 24 November 2023 will be paid.

 

Related Party Transaction

James Knowles is a director of the Company. The Share Lending Agreement is considered to be a material related party transaction (the “Related Party Transaction”).

Marc Sale, Marc Bamber and Andrew Williamson, being the independent directors for the purpose of this Related Party Transaction consider that the terms and conditions are fair and reasonable insofar as the shareholders of the Company are concerned.

 

Total Voting Rights

The total number of voting rights in the Company remains unchanged. The figure of 82,045,729 may be used by shareholders in the Company as the denominator for calculations to determine if they have a notifiable interest in the share capital of the Company under the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules, or if such interest has changed.

 

Ends

For further information, please contact:

 

James Knowles, Executive Chairman

JamesK@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07488 362641

Marc J Sale, CEO

MarcS@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07711 093532

 

Novum Securities Limited

(Financial Adviser)

David Coffman/ George Duxberry

 www.novumsecurities.com

(0)20 7399 9400

 

Blencowe Resources #BRES – Subscription & Conditional Subscription

New Investor

The Company is pleased to report it has raised US$500,000 (£392,350) at 5 pence per share with a specialist African-based investor (“African Investor”) through the issue of 7,847,000 new ordinary shares. The investor has undertaken extensive due diligence over the last four months and the current investment is viewed as an initial entry into the project ahead of anticipated further investment as required. The shares have been issued to the African Investor under the Company’s existing headroom.

Additional Investor and the Issue of a Prospectus

In addition, the Company has conditionally raised a further £2,500,000 at 5 pence resulting in the issue of 50,000,000 new ordinary shares to an additional strategic investor (“Strategic Investor”). The Company is required to publish a prospectus on the basis that it will be issuing more than 20% of its issued share capital in a 12-month period. The Company and its advisers are in advanced stages of finalising the prospectus. The Company anticipates publishing the prospectus this month and will update shareholders prior to its publication.

Conditional Subscription

The Strategic Investor has received investment committee approval and made a firm commitment to subscribe. The subscription by the Strategic Investor is subject to the Company issuing the prospectus, a general meeting by the Company to approve certain resolutions relating to the issue of new ordinary shares, settlement of the investment and the issue and allotment of the new ordinary shares.

For the avoidance of doubt, the subscription by the African Investor is firm and not contingent on any investment by the Strategic Investor. The subscription funds have been received from the African Investor and the Company shall apply for the new ordinary shares to commence trading.

Admission

An application has been made for 7,487,000 new ordinary shares to be admitted to trading on the official list and the London Stock Exchange from 8.00 a.m. on Friday 9 February 2024 (“Admission”).

In accordance with the FCA’s Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules, the Company confirms that following Admission, the Company’s enlarged issued ordinary share capital will comprise 217,226,950 Ordinary Shares. The Company does not hold any Ordinary Shares in Treasury. Therefore, following Admission, the above figure may be used by shareholders in the Company as the denominator for the calculations to determine if they are required to notify their interest in, or a change to their interest in the Company, under the FCA’s Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules.

Mike Ralston, CEO of Blencowe Resources, commented:  ‘I am pleased to provide this positive update with respect to our fundraising initiatives. As previously reported, we have already received US$2,000,000 in grant funding from the US International Development Finance Corporation (“DFC”) out of their approved US$5,000,000 grant. A further US$1,000,000 is expected from the DFC in the near term as the next milestones have been met.

We now welcome a new specialist African investor to the register following the fundraise of  US$500,000 at 5 pence, which represents a healthy premium to the current market price and underlines their decision to invest for the long term after an extensive due diligence exercise. We reasonably believe that they will look to invest further as our relationship is built.

Moreover, we are now in the closing stages of a further subscription of £2.5m at 5 pence from another Strategic Investor and we are busily working with our advisers to finalise and issue the prospectus.

Both these investments at 5p underline the value proposition offered by Blencowe and will provide us with a good runway to complete the DFS this year. We are making rapid progress in de-risking the Orom-Cross project, especially following the recent letter of interest received from the DFC to provide a funding solution for the build and development of Orom-Cross. We will continue to work closely with the DFC as we complete the DFS to ensure construction can commence at Orom-Cross in a timely fashion.

I believe it is testament of the quality of the Orom-Cross project that we have been able secure funding partners like this at a time when the junior mining sector continues to face significant difficulties with respect to sourcing capital. We are hoping to deliver an NPV in the DFS significantly higher than the post-tax NPV of US$482M achieved in the Pre-Feasibility Study and will keep shareholders updated on our progress.’

For further information please contact:

 

  Blencowe Resources Plc

Sam Quinn

 

www.blencoweresourcesplc.com

Tel: +44 (0)1624 681 250

info@blencoweresourcesplc.com

 

Investor Relations

Sasha Sethi

Tel: +44 (0) 7891 677 441

sasha@flowcomms.com

 

Tavira Financial 

Jonathan Evans

Tel: +44 (0)20 3192 1733

jonathan.evans@tavira.group

 

 

First Equity Limited

Jason Robertson

Tel: +44(0)20 7330 1833

jasonrobertson@firstequitylimited.com

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/BlencoweRes

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/72382491/admin/

#BRES Blencowe Resources – DFC LOI REGARDING PROJECT FINANCING

Blencowe Resources Plc (LSE: BRES) is pleased to announce it has received a formal Letter of Interest (“LOI”) from the US International Development Finance Corporation (“DFC”) in which the DFC has indicated its willingness to participate in debt funding for the Orom-Cross graphite project (“Orom-Cross or the “Project”) in Uganda, subject to all necessary due diligence.  This comes following recent discussions with DFC project funding division and follows the 2023 agreement with the DFC’s technical assistance division, who have already entered into a US$5 million Technical Assistance Grant (“TAG”).

To date US$2 million of grant funds have been received from the DFC under the TAG, with the balance expected during the course of 2024 as certain milestones are met. The TAG also provided for the DFC to have the right to be mandated to directly provide (and/or arrange for) financing or investment for the Project on commercial terms.

This LOI is the first step of engagement with the DFC project funding division to advance the project financing process.  During the course of 2024 Blencowe will work closely with the DFC to reach a decision to mine subject to the DFS results and other due diligence.  Graphite is high on the US Government critical metals and minerals list and their strategy is to open up long term supply chains of graphite.  Demand for graphite is accelerating fast and is expected to continue growing into the future due mainly to its non-replaceable role within the lithium-ion battery that stores energy.

The Company is seeking to position Orom-Cross to deliver a ‘green’ graphite product through a variety of production initiatives, including the use of hydro-electric power for all mining and processing energy requirements.  Orom-Cross aims to become one of the leading sustainable mining projects worldwide and this is a very important component of the DFC charter and critical within a rapidly changing landscape where every participant along the EV supply chain is being audited on their sustainability credentials by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs).

Orom-Cross’s potential ability to aid in the further development of the Ugandan economy, empowering its population and driving investment and future development has also proved attractive to the DFC.

Cameron Pearce, Executive Chairman commented;

“This Letter of Interest is an important next-step in the process for DFC to consider project financing support to build Orom-Cross into a producing mine.  Project funding will be crucial for the Company this year as we work to conclude the DFS and this engagement with the DFC continues to underpin our long-term relationship with the DFC, as lead mandated partner, to assist in this exercise.”

 

Mr Pearce added “Our executive management team will be meeting DFC in the near term to evaluate the project implementation strategy and build on the momentum we have already created together.  We believe this is a unique partnership that is significantly de-risking Orom-Cross and we will continue to showcase this exceptional asset as we deliver the DFS results this year.”

 

For further information please contact:

 

 

  Blencowe Resources Plc

Sam Quinn

 

www.blencoweresourcesplc.com

Tel: +44 (0)1624 681 250

info@blencoweresourcesplc.com

Investor Relations

Sasha Sethi

Tel: +44 (0) 7891 677 441

sasha@flowcomms.com

 

Tavira Financial 

Jonathan Evans

Tel: +44 (0)20 3192 1733

jonathan.evans@tavira.group

 

 

First Equity Limited

Jason Robertson

Tel: +44(0)20 7330 1833

jasonrobertson@firstequitylimited.com

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/BlencoweRes

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/72382491/admin/

#BRES Blencowe Resources – Receipt of Further $1m tranche from the DFC

Blencowe Resources Plc (“Blencowe” or the “Company”) (LSE: BRES) is pleased to announce it has received its second tranche US$1 million funding payment from the United States International Development Finance Corporation (“DFC”).  This represents a further 20% of the full US$5 million DFC grant to be utilised for Orom-Cross Definitive Feasibility Study (“DFS”) costs, with US$2 million received in total to date since this agreement was signed in 2023.

This tranche was disbursed on the completion of several key goals as delivered within the DFS, namely;

·    Tailings processing and disposal options study completed.

·    Spheronised purified graphite (“SPG”) test work completed (both coated and uncoated products).

·    Processing plant flowsheet finalised through 100 tonne pilot plant testing.

·    Further 600 tonnes bulk sample mined and ready for export to China for stage two commercial scale testing.

Blencowe can report that all of the above tasks were successfully completed with results reported to market in 4Q 2023.  The SPG test work completed by a leading US graphite technical expert was particularly noteworthy as results indicate Orom-Cross graphite can be purified up to a 99.995% product, which is rare and puts the graphite quality from Orom-Cross at the very highest level.

This is of great significance when considering niche markets, product pricing and offtake relationships.

The Company is well on its way to completing the milestones as required for disbursement of the third DFC tranche of grant funds, which will deliver another US$1 million for additional DFS work.

Additionally the Company is continuing to see strong levels of serious interest from a range of high quality offtake groups and strategic parties.

Cameron Pearce, Executive Chairman commented;

“Following successful completion of key feasibility study milestones this latest tranche of grant funding we have received from DFC is valuable to Blencowe and we extend our sincere appreciation to the DFC for their ongoing support.  The DFC remains a critical strategic partner of Blencowe with discussions underway as to potential funding support from the DFC for the full Orom-Cross graphite project implementation ahead.” 

Mr Pearce added, “I would also like to extend our thanks to our entire operational team both in-country and beyond for their steadfast commitment to achieving objectives and driving progress with the Orom-Cross feasibility study.  Orom-Cross is a unique graphite project with its rare suite of key attributes amongst its peers.  The DFC identified these outstanding characteristics in their due diligence process when assessing Orom-Cross and investors should note that other strategic parties are also taking notice, which provides a strong platform for activities in 2024.”

For further information please contact:

 

  Blencowe Resources Plc

Sam Quinn

 

www.blencoweresourcesplc.com

Tel: +44 (0)1624 681 250

info@blencoweresourcesplc.com

Investor Relations

Sasha Sethi

Tel: +44 (0) 7891 677 441

sasha@flowcomms.com

 

Tavira Financial 

Jonathan Evans

Tel: +44 (0)20 3192 1733

jonathan.evans@tavira.group

 

 

First Equity Limited

Jason Robertson

Tel: +44(0)20 7330 1833

jasonrobertson@firstequitylimited.com

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/BlencoweRes

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/72382491/admin/

#SVML Sovereign Metals – HIGHLY EXPERIENCED SOCIAL SPECIALIST FIRM APPOINTED TO ASSIST IN ADVANCING KASIYA

·     African-based social specialist consultancy, SocialEssence has been appointed to lead social and community development programs for Sovereign in Malawi

·    SocialEssence joins Sovereign’s Owners Team and will design, implement, and manage several social and community initiatives which will feed into the DFS and permitting requirements

·    SocialEssence will build upon existing relationships cultivated over the last decade, between Sovereign and highly supportive local communities at Kasiya

·   SocialEssence has a strong and successful track record of implementing social responsibility programs across southern Africa, including at First Quantum Minerals’ Zambian operations Trident and Kansanshi, where over 7,000 farmers participate in a conservation farming program, which was initiated and led by SocialEssence’s current Livelihood Specialist.

·   The appointment aligns with the Company’s objective to develop a socially responsible and sustainable operation which will provide significant long term and sustainable benefits to local communities.

 

Sovereign Metals Limited (ASX:SVM; AIM:SVML) (the Company or Sovereign) is pleased to announce the appointment of SocialEssence (Pty) Ltd (SocialEssence), a specialist social performance consultancy, who will assist in the continued development of the Company’s stakeholder relations, social performance objectives and its Community and Social Responsibility (CSR) framework.  

Sovereign has engaged SocialEssence to design and execute social performance activities during the Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) phase. Founder, Mr Garth Lappeman, has over 16 years of on the ground social performance planning and implementation experience in accordance with IFC Performance Standards and World Bank Environmental, Health and Safety Guidelines. SocialEssence has been active in a number of countries working on projects in Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Panama, Uganda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Northern Sudan, Tanzania, Uzbekistan, and Zambia.

Most notably, in Zambia, SocialEssence’s Director was involved from early exploration through to steady state production of First Quantum Minerals Ltd’s (First Quantum Minerals) Trident operations, which includes the Sentinel Copper Mine which is of similar scale to Sovereign’s Kasiya project. Mr Lappeman was responsible for implementing and managing social and community initiatives for First Quantum Minerals as it established its large-scale commercial operations.

Managing Director and CEO, Mr Frank Eagar commented: “The SocialEssence exemplary track record and implementation experience aligns with our objectives of establishing long lasting and sustainable community relationships well ahead of project implementation. The conservation farming program implemented by SocialEssence’s leaders in Zambia has stood the test of time and has over 7,000 participating farmers. We will continue to build out our owner’s team and capabilities while we work through Kasiya’s optimisation with Rio Tinto.”

SocialEssence will:

·      prepare Kasiya’s Social Impact Assessment and Management Plan for the DFS and permitting;

·  design, implement and manage social performance activities including stakeholder engagement, development of key relationships;

·     prove the feasibility of critical social performance measures (including early local content, and piloting of livelihood restoration programs, and piloting of rehabilitation activities to restore land for agricultural use); and

·      align with the Company’s ESG Framework.

 

ENQUIRIES

Frank Eagar (South Africa/Malawi)
Managing Director

+61(8) 9322 6322

Sam Cordin (Perth)
+61(8) 9322 6322

Sapan Ghai (London)
+44 207 478 3900

 

#FCM First Class Metals – ADMISSION OF SHARES

First Class Metals PLC (“First Class Metals” “FCM” or the “Company”), the UK listed metals exploration company seeking economic metal discoveries across its extensive Canadian Schreiber-Hemlo, Sunbeam and Zigzag land holdings, announces that, further to the announcement dated 17 January 2024, the  ordinary shares will now be admitted to trading in the following four tranches:

i)             13,134,410 Shares will be admitted to trading on or around 23 January 2024;

ii)            2,626,882 Shares will be admitted to trading on or around 26 January 2024;

iii)           525,377 Shares will be admitted to trading on or around 31 January 2024; and

iv)           87,005 Shares will be admitted to trading on or around 5 February 2024.

For the avoidance of doubt, there is a minor change to the number of shares being admitted in tranches 1 and 3 and no change to tranches 2 and 4.

The Company’s issued share capital remains 82,045,729 ordinary shares of 0.1p each, with one vote per share (and no such shares are held in treasury). The total number of voting rights is therefore 82,045,729 and this figure may be used by shareholders as the denominator for the calculations to determine if they have a notifiable interest in the share capital of the Company under the FCA’s Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules, or if such interest has changed.

For further information, please contact:

 

James Knowles, Executive Chairman

JamesK@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07488 362641

Marc J Sale, CEO

MarcS@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07711 093532

 

#BRES Blencowe Resources – Orom-Cross Graphite Project Update

Blencowe Resources Plc (“Blencowe” or the “Company”), is pleased to provide an update on the progress of the Orom-Cross Definitive Feasibility Study (“DFS”), and some of the expected activities in the current quarter.

Highlights:

·    Further 600 tonne bulk sample completed for shipment to China for commercial scale testing and further OEM testing of processed 99.95% purified SPG product. Testing to be carried out in Q1 2024. Interest in Orom-Cross product has been high from various tier one battery off-takers.

·    Strong support for Orom-Cross from Government of Uganda and specifically Ministry of Mines and Energy. Tenements and licenses in good standing, relations remain strong.

·    Next milestone for further grant funding from the US Government Development Finance Corporation is close to completion and will be announced once funds have cleared.

·    DFS work continuing with activities in four countries, including Uganda, China, US and Australia. Further environmental work continues in parallel to infrastructure studies.

·    Downstream processing options which may provide transformational value opportunities continue to be explored.

A further 600 tonnes of bulk sample graphite was mined at Orom-Cross in late 2023 in order to provide significantly more product for commercial scale testing in China, using the same graphite expert (Jilin) who had successfully completed the testing on the 100 tonne sample previously.  This product will be shipped to China and testing will be done in 1Q 2024 and the resultant concentrate will then be further processed to 99.95% purified product for OEM testing thereafter.  This is ultimately expected to lead to offtake agreements.  To date all testing has been extremely positive and as a result there is plenty of interest in all Orom-Cross products from various tier one battery off-takers.

The Government of Uganda, and specifically the Ministry of Mines and Energy, have been very supportive of this latest bulk sample programme (with representatives in attendance at the time of bulk sampling) and their backing of Orom-Cross continues at all levels.  All tenements and licenses are in good standing and relations remain strong.

Blencowe is near to delivering on the next milestone for further grant funding from the US Government Development Finance Corporation (“DFC”) and this will be announced once funds are cleared.  This remains an important, non-dilutive, source of funding for project work.

DFS work will continue with activities continuing in four countries, including Uganda, China, US and Australia.  Further environmental work is also underway and will continue in parallel to infrastructure studies in-country.  Orom-Cross benefits from substantial key infrastructure already in place near to the project, including roads, communications and access to hydro-electric energy from the national grid. Further announcements in relation to DFS progress will follow as key deliverables are achieved.

Test work on expandability of purified coarse flake product will also be finalised in 1Q 2024 with a leading graphite technical expert in Chicago, USA.  This will determine the quality and characteristics of purified coarse flake end products as opposed to purified smaller flake products which were successfully tested in late 2023.  Orom-Cross project has a strong mix of both coarse (+195) and smaller flake (-195) products, all of which are in demand.

Executive Chairman Cameron Pearce commented:

“Blencowe continues to progress the DFS on a number of key fronts, working towards a project strategy that ultimately delivers the most value for the Company.  We have a unique value proposition at Orom-Cross, with low operating costs, low capital costs and high grade of purity for all end products, which together provide a very compelling case for this project moving into production ahead of most of its peers.  We will also continue to explore downstream processing options as this can potentially take Orom-Cross to yet another level and we will report to market as we progress this.  All in all we envisage an exciting year ahead as we complete the DFS and move the project towards a decision to mine.”

 

For further information please contact:

 

 Blencowe Resources Plc

 Sam Quinn

 

www.blencoweresourcesplc.com

Tel: +44 (0)1624 681 250

info@blencoweresourcesplc.com

 

Investor Relations

Sasha Sethi

Tel: +44 (0) 7891 677 441

sasha@flowcomms.com

 

Tavira Securities 

Jonathan Evans

Tel: +44 (0)20 3192 1733

jonathan.evans@tavirasecurities.com

 

First Equity Limited

Jason Robertson

Tel: +44(0)20 7330 1833

jasonrobertson@firstequitylimited.com

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/BlencoweRes

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/72382491/admin/

Background

Orom-Cross Graphite Project

Orom-Cross is a potential world class graphite project both by size and end-product quality, with a high component of more valuable larger flakes within the deposit.

A 21-year Mining Licence for the project was issued by the Ugandan Government in 2019 following extensive historical work on the deposit and Blencowe is now in the Definitive Feasibility Study phase shortly as it drives towards first production.

Orom-Cross presents as a large, shallow open-pitable deposit, with a maiden JORC Indicated & Inferred Mineral Resource deposit of 24.5Mt @ 6.0% Total Graphite Content. Development of the resource is expected to benefit from a low strip ratio and free dig operations, thereby ensuring lower operating and capital costs.

#FCM First Class Metals Plc – SPODUMENE IN ALL NINE ZIGZAG DRILL INTERSECTIONS

First Class Metals PLC (“First Class Metals” “FCM” or the “Company”) the UK listed metals exploration company seeking economic metal discoveries across its extensive Canadian Schreiber-Hemlo, Sunbeam and Zigzag land holdings is pleased to announce that spodumene-bearing pegmatites have been intersected in every targeted hole drilled at First Class Metals’ Zigzag lithium Property. The identified mineralization remains open along strike and down dip.

HIGHLIGHTS

·      Spodumene (a high-grade lithium mineral – Li[AlSi 2O6].) bearing pegmatite intersected in all nine targeted holes drilled.

·      Over 50m of pegmatite intersections recorded (see figure 1 for area of drilling)

·      Multiple mineralised pegmatite zones were intersected in holes targeting 400m of the known 800m strike.

·      Pegmatite thickness exceeded 5m thick, down hole, and the potentially multiphase mineralised system remains open along strike and down dip / plunge.

·      All holes are being systematically logged and marked up for sampling before cutting / sample collection.

First Class is pleased to announce the completion of the final hole of its inaugural drill programme at the Company’s Zigzag Property (the “Property”), located in the Seymour-Falcon corridor in northwestern Ontario, Canada. The drill programme included 9 holes targeting the pegmatite bearing zone and one hole (the tenth, final hole) being a scissor to ZIG-23-06, to confirm the interpreted dip of the structure. The 10-hole, 450-metre drill programme was completed successfully on the 16th December within budget and time schedules

 

Photo 1 Drill rig completing FCM-23-09, step back to FCM-23-05

The drilling targeted the 400m central section of the property which had been subject to a non-mechanised stripping and channel sampling programme reporting up to 2.36% lithium (Li2O) over 5.5m (See RNS 28th November), see figure 1. Historic drill holes also reported an intersection grading 1.08% Li2O over 6.1m from 12.45m and a separate intersection of 399.8ppm Ta2O 5over 2.92m from 15.50m.

 

Figure 1Drilling covered the area of channel sampling and ‘grabs’ on roughly 50 m centres (note historic grid lines are on 200ft (60m) centres).

Visual observations undertaken whilst logging the core have recorded spodumene-bearing pegmatite in all holes which targeted the pegmatite, (see Photo 2-drill hole FCM-23-01) The core is now being logged in detail then it will be ‘marked-up’ for cutting (sampling), it is anticipated that circa 100 samples will be sent for analyses in Thunder Bay. Results from the initial batch are expected in early Q1 2024.

 

A group of rectangular objects in a wooden box Description automatically generated

Photo  2-Shallow intersection of pegmatite hosting spodumene (pale green ‘blades’ in hole ZIG-23-01).

Marc J Sale Chief Executive Officer Commented-

“The completion of the drilling at Zigzag has consolidated the undertaking to shareholders / investors that FCM would bring 4 properties to ‘drill ready status’ and drill one this season. I am extremely pleased with the (visual) indications of the drill core and the robust intersections that I have seen so far. I look forward with positive anticipation to the first results. We are already planning the next stages of exploration.”

For further information, please contact:

 

James Knowles, Executive Chairman

JamesK@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07488 362641

Marc J Sale, CEO

MarcS@Firstclassmetalsplc.com

07711 093532

 

First Equity Limited

(Financial Adviser & Broker)

 

Jonathan Brown

0207 3742212

Jason Robertson

0207 3742212

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