MNN Awards: Hansen revamps junior explorer

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Its success has been led by managing director Chris Hansen.

Hansen was appointed as MD and CEO of what was then referred to as Barra Sources in Might 2021.

The New Zealand-born geologist was in search of new alternatives early final yr after returning to Perth from a five-year stint with non-public fairness agency Appian Capital in London.

“I reviewed a complete host of various alternatives, most of which have been valued at multiples of Greenstone Sources, or Barra Sources, as the corporate was referred to as on the time,” Hansen advised MNN.

“On some recommendation, I took a better have a look at Barra and leveraging my due diligence talent set, very a lot fashioned a differential view on the property Barra had on the time, and I feel they have been property that the market had largely ignored for the final 10 years.”

These property embrace the high-grade Burbanks gold mission, exterior Coolgardie, and the Mt Thirsty cobalt-nickel three way partnership with Conico, close to Norseman.

Barra had suffered from a scarcity of money, route and management.

A lot in order that when it was introduced that Hansen was becoming a member of the corporate he bought a number of texts and emails questioning his determination.

“I kind of defined to them that having reviewed nicely over 500 totally different mineral and mining tasks over the previous eight or 9 years, you begin to get a way of what works and what would not work,” he stated.

“And I feel within the case of the Barra property, or Greenstone as we are actually, being Burbanks, Phillips Discover and Mt Thirsty, they’re what I assumed have been essentially nice property, however, for my part, had had the improper technique.

“And take our gold portfolio, for instance, the technique for the final 10 or 20 years had all the time been primarily based on this idea of self-funding to industrial manufacturing, and it is a technique which I would typically seen up in North America and it hardly ever labored and the place it did work, it took two to 3 instances longer, as a result of the state of affairs is, is that while you generate a small quantity of cashflow, it is typically barely sufficient cash to maintain the lights on, not to mention fund any significant exploration.

“So for us, the massive change after I got here in was transferring that mindset and that mentality away from small-scale manufacturing, and elevating capital to fund aggressive exploration campaigns throughout the portfolio with the aim of defining a vital mass that we will then wrap a sustainable mine plan round for the following 4 to seven years.”

The corporate resumed an aggressive exploration program at Burbanks final yr, which has already resulted in two discoveries at Burbanks South and Burbanks North.

Drilling at Burbanks South returned outcomes together with 12m at 4.51 grams per tonne gold from 50m, together with 6m at 7.28gpt, whereas 3.1m at 11.72gpt gold from 282.4m, together with 1.1m at 29.48gpt and 0.3m at 89.7gpt was hit at Burbanks North.

Burbanks North has subsequently returned bonanza-grade intersections together with 5m at 30.46gpt gold from 292.1m, together with 1.3m at 97.28gpt gold.

“We have grown that mineralised strike horizon from round 1.5km to in extra of 3-3.5km and we have nonetheless bought, I might say, 10 or 15, targets round that speedy Burbanks space, which require testing and additional follow-up,” Hansen stated.

“What we’re seeking to do is undertake an interim useful resource replace, simply to take inventory of the work that we’ve been doing on the market over the previous 6-8 months, and provides the market a little bit of an replace and steering when it comes to what they will count on going ahead as nicely.”

Greenstone has additionally loved a share worth enhance in current months on account of Galileo Mining’s Callisto palladium discovery, which is simply 200m from the boundary of the Mt Thirsty JV.

The JV will kick off an preliminary 5000m program to check the potential in early August.

“The scale and the dimensions and the monster of a geological system, like Brad [Underwood] and the Galileo crew suppose it’s, we hope, primarily based on our geological interpretations, that geophysics is steady, bedrock is steady, and we’re very keen to check that early subsequent month,” Hansen stated.

“So over the previous eight weeks, we have labored extremely onerous to expedite that exploration program down there, to the purpose we have negotiated and executed an up to date heritage settlement with the Ngadju, we have accomplished the heritage survey final week, secured a drill rig, further area employees, PoW purposes.

“I feel, on this present market, to do all of that inside eight weeks, it is a reflection of us as a administration crew and the way rapidly we’re seeking to speed up and unlock the worth from this portfolio.”

In addition to the brand new title, Greenstone’s rejuvenation beneath Hansen has additionally included a brand new board.

Geologist Mike Edwards joined as chairman, whereas fellow geologist Glen Poole joined as a non-executive director.

“Mike has been completely incredible. Him and I feel very alike when it comes to my being a geologist by commerce, however importantly, he is spent a very long time inside public fairness markets as nicely which has complimented my expertise very properly,” Hansen stated.

“And Glen Poole has simply been completely invaluable to unlocking the worth, notably inside that gold portfolio. Glen was beforehand with Northern Star and labored throughout various their operations, importantly for us, labored on the Kundana operations, which is basically the closest geological analog to what we’re coping with at Burbanks.”

An opportunity encounter at college bought Hansen into geology. He’d initially studied enterprise however rapidly realised it wasn’t for him.

Hansen stated his notion of geology had been “socks and sandals” and dealing for the federal government.

He described a “very fortuitous” encounter with a geology pupil on the college bar, who defined Western Australia’s booming mining sector and the kind of cash graduates have been getting paid.

The penny dropped and Hansen switched topics.

He initially labored for Northern Star within the Goldfields, then moved to iron ore within the Pilbara with Fortescue Metals Group.

Hansen accomplished a masters of mineral economics within the background and made the transfer to London, the place he scored the job with Appian.

“I primarily based out of London for 5 years and in the end was VP of funding,” he stated.

“At the moment, we had a fund of round $US350 million that we deployed throughout a handful of mining alternatives.”

Hansen and his spouse returned to Perth for household causes simply earlier than the beginning of the pandemic.

“Since returning to Australia, I used to be enterprise growth supervisor for Andrew Forrest’s non-public minerals and mining portfolio, Wyloo Metals, and through that point, led a number of transactions, most notably the circa $30 million stake in Noront Sources, which in the end triggered a really public takeover battle between Andrew and BHP for the rest of the corporate.”

Hansen has been fortunate sufficient to journey the world in his non-public fairness roles however his present function is healthier suited to his younger household.

He is bought two younger daughters, one who’s three-and-a-half and the opposite six months previous.

“They each they each devour lots of time and I say that within the nicest potential sense,” Hansen stated.

“They’re each lovely younger women however I feel being a director of a publicly listed firm and managing a younger household comes with its personal host of, I suppose, difficulties and points that you need to handle.”

Chris Hansen is a nominee for Rising Chief of the 12 months within the 2022 MNN Awards.


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