Patriot is operated by a management team consisting of individuals with a track record of success in mining exploration, development and production. Patriot is an exploration company focused on the development of gold and silver deposits in the known mining districts of Mexico. The Company’s current focus is the KM 66 Project, a 13,400 hectare property located within Central Mexico's prolific silver belt of the highly prospective Altiplano Region. It covers a five kilometer-long trend of mineralization that includes the breccia-hosted La Gloria and Las Palmitas ("La Gloria") silver-gold-lead-zinc deposit. The La Gloria deposit exhibits characteristics that typify Penasquito and Camino Rojo-styles of deposits, in particular, breccia‐hosted and carbonate replacement mineralization associated with buried porphyry mineralization. Patriot is focused on targeting precious and base metal rich systems analogous to Goldcorp's Penasquito and Camino Rojo deposits.
Shares in Patriot Minefinders (OTCBB:PROF) have risen over 34% in the past month as investors look forward to a resource update and preliminary economic assessment (PEA) on its KM 66 project in Mexico this year.
Indeed, investors have a lot to be excited about as the company boasts a significant land position with several advanced-stage targets and an “excellent package” of exploration targets.
Director Fred Tejada adds that the resource estimate and concurrent preliminary economic assessment, which are due out in the first half of 2013, make the company all the more attractive from an investment standpoint.
“This is a rare opportunity to get involved in a company with production potential in a known area, with blue sky exploration potential,” he points out.
The company’s flagship project, the KM 66 property, contains a historical, 2008 NI 43-101 indicated resource of 6.58 million tonnes grading 28 grams per tonne (g/t) silver, 0.09 g/t gold, 0.41% lead and 1.14% zinc, for 22.3 million silver equivalent ounces. The resource was based on parameters used by Wardrop, which prepared the technical report for Great Panther Silver (TSE:GPR) who previously held an option to acquire Km 66.
This resource also includes a further 2.03 million tonnes grading 34 g/t silver, 0.13 g/t gold, 0.54% lead and 0.81% zinc, for just over 6.3 million silver equivalent ounces in the inferred category, using a cut-off grade of 50 g/t silver equivalent in the La Gloria and Las Palmitas silver-gold-lead-zinc deposits.
Patriot has inked a preliminary deal for an option to earn a 75% interest in the KM 66 project from Bearing Resources (CVE:BRZ).
“The resource estimate was done prior to Patriot entering to an agreement to acquire an interest in the property,” notes Tejada.
“What we need to do is have a qualified person review the report, and perhaps visit the site, in order to update it and make it current before it is reissued. We expect that to be done within the first quarter of this year, with a preliminary economic assessment expected in the last part of the second quarter.”
Importantly, Tejada says that KM 66 covers a five kilometre-long trend of mineralization, which exhibits characteristics that typifies Goldcorp's (TSE:G) Penasquito and Camino Rojo deposits.
The Vancouver-based company’s focus this year will include advanced-stage work aimed at expanding KM 66, while still conducting exploration on numerous targets.
At the La Gloria deposit area of the project, Tejada says the breccia zone that hosts the deposit has not yet been defined, and in the year ahead, Patriot plans to conduct ground geophysical survey and soil geochemistry along the mineralized trend.
“In 2013, we plan to expand the resource area at La Gloria and its neighbouring zones,” he says, adding that drilling is also planned to confirm the extension of the mineralization.
The company is also planning to re-log the previous drill core and conduct surface mapping.
At the recently discovered Victorinos target, a 500 by 600 metre gold-silver-lead-zinc soil anomaly identified by Bearing, Patriot says grab samples have assayed up to 0.40 g/t gold and 306 g/t silver. Victorinos will be the focus of exploration in the coming months after La Gloria.
“The soil geochemistry is very interesting and we could be looking at a gold target,” Tejada notes.
“There are historical underground workings there, which obviously indicate that the locals were attracted to the area at one time.”
Patriot plans to drill a few holes to confirm mineralization in Victorinos, Tejada says, with drilling planned as early as the second quarter of this year.
As Patriot moves forward with its plans for 2013, the company’s director is confident in that it will be led by a “first class” management team.
The company’s CEO, John H. Schweitzer, has been a partner with the law firm of Stassinopoulos & Schweitzer, APLC since June 2004. Prior to this, Schweitzer was employed by Merrill Lynch and Northern Trust Bank, where he specialized in international tax and trust agreements.
Justin Blanchet, CFO and director at Patriot, brings more than 8 years of mining experience in the areas of financial management, regulatory compliance, tax, treasury, and audit.
Tejada himself has 30 years of international mineral industry experience and has worked with both major mining companies and exploration-focused organizations. He is currently president of Tirex Resources, (CVE:TXX) a Vancouver-based public company with near term production projects in Albania.
Meanwhile, Patriot’s other three directors, Frederick J. Sveinson, Perparim Alikaj and Michael Hofer, have significant experiences in the resource sector. Sveinson is a professional mining engineer with 40 plus years experience in the development and operation of underground mines from 100 to 2,000 tonnes per day in Africa, the U.S., South America and Canada, including the Arctic.
“We have a team with experience in all facets of the industry,” says Tejada.
As far as financing goes, Tejada says that Patriot still needs “to put money in the bank”, and plans to begin financing as soon as possible to fund its 2013 exploration program.
“And, as indicated in December, we would like to move to a definitive agreement with Bearing, with whom we have a letter of intent, by mid-February.”
The work program in 2013 will be managed by Bearing, Patriot says, as Bearing has “significant experience” in the area and has a technical team on the ground, which makes the arrangement beneficial to both parties at this stage, Tejada concludes.