Last week, Marvel Discovery Corp. (MARV:TSX.V; MARVF:OTCQB) provided an update on its Blackfly gold project in the Atikokan mining camp of northwestern Ontario. Drilling commenced there on June 24, and nine diamond drill holes [1,116 meters in all] have been completed.
Management is waiting for assays (expected in October) before drilling seven more holes. The program has focused on the historical shaft area, with four holes done at the Blackfly Northeast zone, where hole #BF19-21 encountered several specks of Visible Gold (VG) at the 39.3 m mark.
VG was also noted in hole #BF21-15 at a downhole depth of eight meters. This hole targeted the newly discovered Mosquito zone, 100 meters southwest of the main Blackfly zone.
Mr. Karim Rayani, president and CEO commented, "VG is always a very good indicator, especially when found in multiple holes. The geological team reports that all completed holes look visually encouraging with quartz-veining, mineralization, alteration and shearing. Our first hole into mineralization discovered during our 2021 sampling and mapping program also reported VG. To date, we now have four sub-parallel gold mineralization trends that have been confirmed by drilling."
456 samples have been submitted to the lab. Hole #BF21-20 was drilled at the Blackfly Northeast zone where TerraX Minerals intersected 11 grams per tonne (g/t) Au over two meters in 2011. Blackfly is ~13.6 km southwest along strike of Agnico Eagle's 5M+ oz, 32k hectare, Hammond Reef project.
92,000 reasons to be excited about Marvel's Newfoundland gold property portfolio
As exciting as the Blackfly news is, even bigger things are coming from Marvel's Newfoundland gold portfolio, where the company has locked up a land package covering ~92,000 hectares. Importantly, management is not rapidly expanding merely for growth's sake, they're only pursuing well-located properties that are near, or host, regional structures of interest.
The top eight Newfoundland-focused gold juniors have announced nearly 500,000 meters of drilling in 2021 alone (in varying stages of completion). Two hundred thousand meters is being done by New Found Gold Corp. (NFG). Imagine how many exciting press releases all of this drilling will produce in coming months.
Yesterday, Marvel announced that through staking and two low-cost option agreements it has secured an additional 29,525 hectares, located along the Baie Verte Brompton Line (BVBL) in the hugely prospective Central Newfoundland Belt.
All of Newfoundland's current gold production is from Anaconda Mining's Point Rousse mine and Rambler Metals & Mining's operations on the Baie Verte Peninsula.
These two mines, and past producers such as Terra Nova, are close to the BVBL. Management reports that there are >100 gold prospects and zones related to major splays and second-order structures linked to the BVBL. Marvel just obtained ground covering 70 km along this key line.
Management continues to cost-effectively build its portfolio. Other properties include the Hope Brook parcel, contiguous to First Mining Gold (FM) and a Sokoman Minerals/Benton Resources JV. FM has delineated 954k ounces (Indicated + Inferred) at a healthy weighted average grade of 4.7 g/t gold at the past-producing, 26,650 hectare Hope Brook project.
This project is a great comparison for Marvel's property of the same name. FM recently farmed out (up to) 80% of its project to Big Ridge Gold. The farm-out terms offer a glimpse of what Marvel's similar-sized [19,075 ha] Hope Brook property could be worth after a few years of drilling.
CEO Rayani continues to stake and option valuable properties in Newfoundland, on great terms!
To earn an 80% interest, Big Ridge has to pay FM a total of US$10.5 million (in shares + cash) over three years + invest US$20 million on exploration/development. FM retains a 1.5% NSR, and is free-carried through delivery of a Feasibility Study. Twenty million US$ will buy a lot of drilling!
Marvel's Hope Brook property is also near Australia-listed Matador Mining's growing 840k oz, very high-grade (for an open-pit scenario) resource. Matador's Cape Ray project has a preliminary economic assessment on it. Both Big Ridge and Matador are spending considerable sums on drilling this year and next, all within tens of kilometers of Marvel's property.
Marvel's 10,650 hectare Victoria Lake gold project lies within Newfoundland's Exploits Subzone, which is rapidly becoming a district-scale camp. Historical work indicates that the project shares similar structural settings to Marathon Gold's Valentine Lake project, billed as the soon to be "largest gold mine in Atlantic Canada."
Preliminary work on the project generated grab samples ranging from about 15 to 25 g/t gold + (up to) 140 g/t silver.
Valentine has 4.1M oz. (Measured+Indicated+Inferred) gold, and a Feasibility Study supporting its grand opening in late 2023. The near-term start of operations ensures that regional infrastructure (roads, rail, power, water) and a skilled workforce will be readily available if/when Victoria Lake enters more advanced-stage development.
Is Marvel's property in Newfoundland worth >C$7 million?
Marvel's 11,875 hectare Gander North property is ~25 km east of the Queensway project and contiguous to Sassy Resources' Gander North project. Northeast trending structural lineaments, first recognized by Sassy, are interpreted to continue onto Marvel's property.
Marvel's 10,250 hectare Gander South property is proximal to the boundary between the Exploits Subzone and the Gander Zone of Newfoundland, ~10 km east of the highly prospective, northeast-trending Dog Bay-Appleton-Grub Line fault system. Note: All three of Marvel's Gander properties are near this critical fault system.
The Dog Bay-Appleton-Grub Line fault system hosts NFG's world-famous Queensway project and is thought to contribute to the above mentioned mineralization at Marathon Gold's project. Readers are strongly encouraged to look at the map! Only a handful of gold juniors have meaningful properties close to NFG's holdings. Note: Map does not show Victoria Lake or yesterday's newly acquired/staked properties.
Each of Marvel's Gander East and North properties are larger in size than Labrador's high-grade, more advanced 7,700 hectare Kingsway project in purple on the map. And, all three Gander properties are larger than Sokoman's 2,450 hectare Moosehead project. Yet, Labrador's and Sokoman's projects command a lot of value in the market as they've delivered high-grade assays (both pre-maiden resource).
The 6,850 hectare Gander East property is contiguous to the Queensway project. All three Gander properties would be highly sought after in today's market. Combined, the nearly 29,000 hectare land package enjoys one of the hottest gold exploration addresses in North America!
Small Newfoundland projects (NFG, Sokoman, Labrador Gold) can host large high-grade deposits!
Like the main projects held by NFG, Labrador, Sokoman, Exploits and Sassy—Marvel's three properties benefit from promising geological structures and fault systems running through and/or around them. And, as mentioned, all three will see substantial nearby drilling by those much higher valued neighbors.
The 3,700 hectare Slip Gold project is also in the Exploits Subzone and hosts known mineralization, sampling up to 44.5 g/t gold on surface. The project is ~18 km northwest of Queensway. A detailed, systematic exploration program is underway to better understand the setting and to generate compelling drill targets for next year.
Marvel Discovery Corp. (TSXV: MARV) (Frankfurt: O4T1) OTCQB: MARVF) suffers from having too large a number of prospective properties/projects in one investment vehicle.
Assuming its Newfoundland portfolio of nearly 92,000 hectares is worth half the company's enterprise value, that's roughly C$7 million or C$72/hectare. Compare that to the chart below. The average of peers (with earlier-stage, similar market caps, not the larger players) is C$665/hectare.
Granted, if Marvel was sitting on below-average properties across the Island, then its C$72/ha valuation might be warranted. However, again I urge readers—look at the map. Note: The map does not show Victoria Lake or yesterday's newly acquired/staked properties.
Clearly, management has picked up some very attractive locations, no?
Some good or very good footprints, and we know from NFG, Sokoman and Labrador that it needn't take a lot of surface area to (potentially) pack in large, high-grade deposits. Hell, even NFG's absolute monster of a deposit is (so far) hosted on just several thousand hectares.
There are multiple ways to win here, and probably (in my opinion only) fairly minimal downside to today's valuation of ~C$14 million. If CEO Karim Rayani were to run out of cash, I'm confident other juniors would gladly step in.
The company has ten assets across Canada it could farm out, including six gold properties in Newfoundland/92,000 hectares. The future looks bright, especially if/when the gold price picks up again.
Peter Epstein is the founder of Epstein Research. His background is in company and financial analysis. He holds an MBA degree in financial analysis from New York University's Stern School of Business.
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