South Korea Update

JV model approach for South Korean gold mine

Bluebird Merchant Ventures Ltd, a gold company primarily focused on bringing historic mines back into production, is pleased to announce that its management has just completed a round of meetings with a South Korean entity regarding a partial farm out and free carry to production for the Company’s 100% owned Gubong Gold Mine (‘Gubong’).

Gubong, the larger of the Company’s two 100% owned gold mining projects in South Korea, was historically the country’s second largest gold mine and where the Korea Resources Corporation estimated a resource of 2.34 million tonnes at c.7.3g/t Au garnered from 57 drill holes over 17,715.3 metres. It is an orogenic deposit, which typically have depths of up to 2km compared to Gubong’s current defined depth of only c.500m which translates into significant potential upside. The value of Gubong and the Kochang Gold and Silver mine (‘Kochang’), the smaller of the Company’s South Korean projects, was highlighted in a Scoping Study published in 2023, which included a post-tax NPV of US$181 million, free cash flow of c.US$50 million per annum, an IRR of 111% and a US$630 per oz All in Sustaining Cost (“AISC”). The study was conducted on a US$1,750 per oz gold price compared to the current price of c. US$2,200 per oz.

The JV model structure has already been implemented at the Company’s Batangas Gold Project in the Philippines, where an Environmental Impact Study is presently underway and is fully funded by a local group with decades of experience in mining.

With regards to Kochang, the Board has also consulted with its legal advisors on the Board of Audit and Inspection process and has been informed that the review is still being processed.

Bluebird CEO Colin Patterson said, “The team was on the ground last week and concluded highly positive meetings with the South Korean entity, with whom we have been working informally over the last year, regarding the optimal collaborative structure for the development of Gubong.  Drawing from our successful experience in the Philippines, we are convinced that the discussed JV model, which would secure a free carry for Bluebird to anticipated production, is the optimal structure to unlock value. We remain confident of finalising a comprehensive agreement in the very near future and thereafter delivering hoped for transformative returns to our shareholders.”

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