"We have a remarkable opportunity at our Iska Iska asset in Bolivia to outline two world-class deposits."
What initially captivated you about Eloro’s land package in Bolivia?
BP: The whole thing starts off with Dr. Osvaldo Arce who was fascinated with the geological potential of Bolivia. If you look at a map of Peru, you see a plethora of mines, but then you come down to Bolivia, and suddenly the number of mines drops off considerably. That certainly has nothing to do with the geology. Osvaldo came up with Iska Iska in 2019, and we put in some money to do due diligence work there. He then went in and did a channel sampling program, and we realized very quickly that there was a very large alteration zone. We negotiated a deal and announced the acquisition in January of 2020, but due to Covid we did not start drilling until September. We were able to drill from underground at Huayra Kasa, and on holes three and four, we hit a breccia pipe. This was a revelation, and geologically it was significant, because breccia pipes rarely occur in isolation. Our big breakthrough occurred when we drilled to the southwest and hit 180 m of mineralized breccia. In January of 2021, we announced the discovery hole DHK-15, and we have not looked back since.
What progress has Eloro made since its initial Iska Iska discovery?
BP: One of the big achievements of 2022 was the recognition that our major mineralized zone spans the entire Caldera. In the last half of 2022, we stepped out our drilling to the southeast, and we continually got excellent intersections. The breccia pipes were our big focus initially, but as we move across the valley is there is a huge dacitic porphyry sitting in the middle of the caldera. This is what is likely driving the massive porphyry-epithermal mineralized system and which appears to have overprinted a deeper and earlier tin porphyry system. After a little over two years of drilling, we have done 85,000 m and 122 holes. We have not missed in one hole, and furthermore, we have not defined the limits of the mineralized zone yet. Our next big benchmark will be our inaugural mineral resource estimate. But it is more like a progress report. We are finding magnificent core, which is remarkably consistent, continuous, and high grade at 90 g/t silver equivalent and greater. Santa Barbara is essentially the cherry on top of what we feel is a giant likely tin porphyry.
What are some of the key catalysts for 2023?
BP: First is the mineral resource estimate, which we are focused on getting done as soon as possible. That will be on Santa Barbara. The number two trigger will be to go after targets at Mina Casiterita with the hope of defining the tin porphyry aspect. We have a remarkable opportunity at Iska Iska to outline two world-class deposits.
How do you view Bolivia as a jurisdiction?
BP: President Luis Arce was the finance minister during the Morales' government, and he has made it very clear that he wants to attract foreign investment. At the same time, they want full involvement with Bolivians. If you go to our site, you will see our managers are Bolivian, we have a group of about 28 geologists, all of whom are our Bolivian, our drill contractor is Bolivian. That is the kind of investment Bolivia is looking for, and our experience in Bolivia has been nothing but positive. Bolivia, to me is a jewel in South America. The potential is tremendous, and we have had nothing but great cooperation from the communities.
What could lead to a rerating in the value of Eloro’s stock in 2023?
TL: Given how quickly things are evolving, we have been very careful on the share capitalization structure of Eloro to capture the value added from what is taking place on site. We are trying to contain the share cap fully diluted to 100 million shares outstanding, so once you see the quantitative parameters of what will take place in the MRE, we will capture the value per tonne of rock in relation to the amount of shares outstanding. I believe this will contribute to a dramatic rerating of the company.