Infinitum Copper (INFI.V) delivered on the promises it made before this summer. The Phase 1 drill program at the La Adelita copper project was completed and assay results are slowly trickling in. Three of the first four holes encountered high-grade copper mineralization and the main reason why Infinitum didn’t report 4/4 was because the one hole with lower-grade mineralization didn’t reach the required depth to hit the mineralized zone.
The assay results from the first four holes drilled at La Adelita
Infinitum has slowly started to release the assay results from its recently completed drill program and holes 17 and 18 were drilled from the same drill pad, and as you can see below, hole 17 used a 45 degree dip while hole 18 went in steeper at a 67 degree angle.
Both holes did encounter copper mineralization but while hole 17 was nothing to write home about with 9.15 meters of 0.14% copper and 0.06 g/t gold, hole 18 was good. It was even exceptional. The drill bit encountered 24.35 meters (20.60 meters true width) of 1.91% copper, 2 g/t gold and just under 41 g/t silver, as you can see in the table below.
Even ‘just’ the 1.91% copper would have been a remarkable result but throwing in the gold and silver values using a price of $1725/oz and $18/oz respectively, the copper-equivalent grades of the two precious metals are 1.44% and 0.3% respectively (applying a copper price of $3.5/pound). This means the 20.6 meter interval actually carries a copper-equivalent grade of 3.65%. The company provided a copper-equivalent calculation based on a copper price of $3.25 per pound and $20 silver and $1600 gold, resulting in a copper-equivalent percentage of 3.71%.
Encountering that type of grade over an interval of in excess of 20 meters on a true width basis is excellent.
The two holes were drilled just a few dozen meters away from the old Adelita adit to try to identify the extension of the high-grade copper-gold-silver mineralization at the Cerro Grande and Cerro Grande Footwall zone. And if we pull up the same cross-section again, you see hole 17 had to be abandoned before reaching the desired depth.
And that’s a pity as the current interpretation of the mineralization encountered in hole 18 seems to focus on an upward trajectory and hole 17 appeared to have been lost just meters from the anticipated mineralization there and hopefully, the company will follow up on this area in the Phase 2 drill program which should start after the end of the current rainy season in Sonora. An additional bonus is the high magnetite content encountered in hole 18 (with iron values averaging 24% Fe). The combination of semi-massive magnetite with high-grade Cu-Au-Ag mineralization should be detectable with detailed magnetometry and Infinitum Copper is planning to complete a detailed magnetometer survey after the vegetation in the area dies again (typically by mid-November).
A few weeks later, Infinitum released the assay results from two additional drill holes. We were looking forward to see if the company would be able to replicate the high-grade mineralization in the subsequent two holes. In the image below, we have highlighted holes 18, 19 and 20. Holes 19 and 20 were designed as step-out holes to drill-test the structure about 110 meters to the south.
And hole 19 was excellent. As you can see below, the drill bit intersected 33.95 meters (with an estimated true width of 32.25 meters) containing 1.74% copper-equivalent consisting of 1.01% copper, 0.52 g/t gold and 39.69 g/t silver including a higher grade interval of 17.05 meters true width containing 2.81% copper-equivalent.
And while hole 20 was the ‘weakest’ of the three recently disclosed holes, encountering 19.3 meters true width of 0.97% copper-equivalent, including two distinct higher grade zones with 8.3 meters containing 1.55% copper-equivalent and 4.25 meters containing 1.39% copper-equivalent is still a good result as it confirms the continuity of the mineralization. It is a pity hole 17 was lost before it reached the target depth as it would have been pretty interesting to see a further extension of the (high-grade) mineralization towards the north and odds are Infinitum would have been able to report high-grade results in all four holes.
Infinitum also released a short video update and this 2-minute video of CEO Steve Robertson explaining the drill results is worth your time to get a better understanding of the company’s exploration approach and the meaning of these results.
Well first of all, we would expect the company to release new assay results from the summer drill program at La Adelita. Releasing results while raising money is frowned upon, so we expect the company to be in a blackout period until the financing closes.
As a reminder, Infinitum completed twelve holes at La Adelita in its Phase 1 drill program and has only reported assay results from four holes which means it still has to report on eight additional holes. Do we expect those holes to be as good as holes 18-20? Maybe not, but keep in mind that this is exploration and not infill drilling on a well-known zone. But having eight additional data points will help the exploration team to connect the dots and provide valuable information on the structural controls of the mineralization.
Now the rainy season is coming to an end in Sonora and Sinaloa, we expect Infinitum to restart drilling as soon as practically feasible. The Phase 2 drill program was originally anticipated to complete 6,000 meters of drilling in twenty holes but we expect the total amount of holes and meters to be subject to the financial situation of the company and a factor of how much cash Infinitum can raise. In fact, the experienced crew at Infinitum will probably find ways to stretch the available budget as far as possible to continue to advance the discovery process despite the difficult market conditions. This probably means a little less drilling in favor of more prospecting, mapping and boots-on-the-ground type work.
Infinitum is raising C$1M to continue to work on La Adelita
Drilling isn’t cheap and last week, Infinitum announced a private placement to add some cash to the treasury. The C$1M financing was priced at C$0.13 and each unit will consist of one common share and half a warrant with each warrant allowing the warrant holder to acquire an additional share of Infinitum Copper C$0.22 for a period of two years.
By raising just C$1M, Infinitum is keeping the dilution at the current share price limited but we would expect the company to accept more than C$1M in subscriptions if the demand is there. As there are currently 45.6M shares outstanding (including the impact from the shares that will be canceled in the near future), raising C$1M at the current terms would increase the share count to 53.3M shares and even post-financing the market capitalization is less than C$7M. Or as Capital Markets Advisor Jorge Ramiro Monroy mentioned on a recent investor call ‘you are basically buying a company with two strong copper projects for the price of a shell’.
Of course, it is also very important to see what Infinitum spends the money on. And while we are still waiting for the company to report its Q3 results, the H1 results already provide some insight into how Infinitum spends its cash.
While the net loss in the first semester was almost C$4M, in excess of 40% was related to RTO transaction costs (which are non-recurring) while the C$226,000 in legal fees should also be non-recurring (we can already see this in the second quarter when just C$16,000 in legal fees were incurred). Additionally, the C$181,000 in share-based compensation is a non-cash expense as well. This means that of the C$3.94M in net loss, approximately C$2.05M was either non-recurring or non cash. And as C$1.1M was spent on exploration, approximately 58% of the cash outflow (excluding the property payments) was spent on exploration. A decent result, and as you can see in the image above, that ratio increased to 62% in the second quarter (which is the company’s first quarter as a publicly listed company).
So in excess of 50% of every dollar raised goes into the ground. And that ratio should increase as INFI is able to raise more funds as the fixed overhead costs shouldn’t increase while there will be more funds available for exploration.
The assay results of the first few holes of the 2022 drill program are very positive as it further helps the company to zero in on the high-quality drill targets at La Adelita and the finetuned projection of the mineralization means it should be relatively easy to build tonnage at that specific zone.
Although cash isn’t easy to come by as a junior exploration company, Infinitum should be able to continue to plug away at La Adelita. And let’s not forget the company also has an option agreement to acquire the Hot Breccia project in Arizona. Although the Arizona project is interesting as well, we expect the company to continue to focus on La Adelita as Infinitum likely gets the biggest bang for its buck in Sonora, Mexico.
We expect a silent period while the financing is being completed and expect Infinitum to be able to release the assay results from several La Adelita holes once the financing closes.
Disclosure: The author has a long position in Infinitum Copper. Infinitum Copper is a sponsor of the website. Please read our disclaimer.