Nelson Resources Ltd. has applied for two more tenements to complete the consolidation of the historic West Australian Woodline gold project formerly explored by Sipa Resources Ltd. and Newmont Goldcorp Corp., in the belief the asset could turn it into the next Independence Group NL.
Nelson announced June 3 that it had applied for tenements E63/1971 and E28/2923, which are within the vicinity of its Socrates, Grindall and Redmill projects, the latter of which was a package of tenements the junior applied for in January.
The Woodline project is located on the southern end of the interpreted Tropicana Belt 20 kilometers north-east of the Albany-Fraser Province.
The latest move came after Nelson acquired Newmont's data set over the area in September 2018, and S&P Global Market Intelligence has learned that it is also talking to another company about acquiring further data within the existing area.
It also consolidates 644 square kilometers of tenure over the 20-kilometer geochemical anomaly that Nelson believes has the potential to produce a gold deposit the scale of Independence Group's Tropicana gold project, which attracted the interest of South African gold major AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. which now operates it.
Nelson Executive Director Adam Schofield said given Newmont had compared Woodline to Tropicana in terms of geology and potential and had progressed it to the point of doing wide-spaced drilling, Nelson believes that consolidating Woodline again would make it a "company maker."
He said that while Sipa and Newmont's approach was very methodical in spending A$11 million in Nelson's tenure, they only put 77 diamond holes into three projects in the area at 1-kilometer spacing, which points to "a real lack of drilling."
The anomaly is "almost certain to host a decent-sized ore deposit," given its sheer size, he said.
Schofield believes the fundamentals for a higher gold price are strong, helping Nelson grow into a miner, particularly with the increased focus back on exploration amid majors' renewed interest in backing juniors to replenish their project pipelines.
"We see ourselves as a potential Independence Group, and with their partnership with AngloGold Ashanti, there's a real emphasis [on exploration], so now is the time to be developing these projects with the view to getting majors interested and participating," he said.
Nelson listed in December 2017 with Socrates which used to form part of Newmont's Woodline exploration project, and Yarrie, at which it started drilling in November 2018, plus the Wilga Well and Happy Jack projects.