American West Metals (ASX AW1) has completed the expenditure required to acquire 80% of the Storm Project from Aston Bay Holdings (TSXV:BAY).
The $96.6 million market capitalisation company and Aston Bay entered into an option agreement on 9 March 2021 whereby American West was granted the exclusive right and option to acquire the majority interest upon completion of project exploration expenditure of CAD$10 million.
That exploration expenditure was completed during the 2023 drilling program and American West has exercised the option to acquire 80% of Storm.
An unincorporated joint venture with Aston Bay will be formed between the parties – 80% American West, 20% Aston Bay – with American West as manager of the JV.
Under the new JV with Aston Bay, American West plans to increase the resource and exploration programs at the Storm Project with a ramp-up of activities during 2024.
The Storm Project is located in a historical and tier-one mining district with nearby mines including the Polaris Zinc-Lead mine (22Mt @ 14.1% Zn, 4% Pb) and the Nanisivik Zinc-Lead-Silver mine (18Mt @ 9% Zn, 0.7% Pb, 35g/t Ag).
Storm is located some 15km from the coast with access to a deepwater bay and a designated shipping route, providing robust logistics. The land package at Storm comprises 219,257 hectares and hosts over 80km strike of prospective stratigraphy – representing a rare, district scale opportunity.
Since commencement of the Storm option agreement in 2021, American West has advanced the project with systematic exploration focused on 2 clear strategies – define maiden resources and expand the footprint of the high-grade, near-surface copper mineralisation, and, explore for sediment-hosted copper at depth and within the broader project area.
Addressing the deal, Managing Director of American West Metals Managing Director Dave O’Neill says: “Building on the outstanding and ongoing success of the drilling and exploration programs at Storm, we are pleased to report that American West has now completed the earn-in for an 80% interest in the Storm Project.
This has been a defining year for the Storm Project with significant expansion of the near-surface high-grade copper and a breakthrough discovery of the deeper, regional sediment-hosted copper system.
Securing an 80% interest in Storm through the efficient and timely completion of exploration programs required under the option agreement is a fantastic outcome for the Company and our shareholders.”
American West has deployed a broad range of geophysics – including high-resolution Electromagnetics (EM), ground gravity and ground magnetics surveys – to establish targets for both resource expansion and exploration drilling.
About 11,290m of reverse circulation (RC) and diamond drilling have been completed by American West for a total of 73 drill holes. The company says the geophysics have proven to be a very effective targeting tool with expansion of the footprint of the near-surface mineralisation – including the discovery of the Thunder and Lightning Ridge deposits – and the highly significant discovery of the deeper, regional scale sediment-hosted copper system.
Gravity and EM anomalies – similar to those drilled in 2023 and confirmed as significant copper mineralisation – extend for several kilometres within the Storm tenure and highlight the vast size of the Storm copper system and the enormous exploration potential.
Write to Adam Orlando at Mining.com.au
Images: American West