News Releases

Alto Verde Copper Completes Acquisition Of Exploration Concessions From Minera Freeport-McMoRan South America Limitada

October 25, 2021

  • Highly prospective assets in the heart of a major Chilean Copper belt
  • Experienced team; History of financing, building and operating
  • Proceeding to public listing

TORONTO, ONTARIO – October 25, 2021, Alto Verde Copper Inc. ("Alto Verde" or the "Company”), a private copper-focused mineral exploration company, is pleased to announce the closing of its acquisition of three exploration projects from Minera Freeport-McMoRan South America Limitada (“MFMSA”), a wholly owned subsidiary of Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (“FCX”) located on a prolific Chilean Copper belt, in close proximity to a number of the world’s largest mining operations including Anglo American and Glencore’s Collahuasi mine, Teck Resources’ Quebrada Blanca mine, and BHP’s Spence mine. The acquisition of the properties more commonly known as Tres Marías, Pitbull and Zenaida who’s concessions cover an area of 16,250 hectares of prospective ground, marks the official launch of the Company’s strategy to leverage its seasoned leadership team’s experience and relationships within the industry to build a mid-tier copper producing company over the course of the next several years. 

“We are very pleased to have completed the acquisition of the Tres Marías, Pitbull and Zenaida copper properties as we move to the next step in the Company’s evolution,” stated Chris Buncic, President and CEO. “We are at the beginning of an exciting journey, and we appreciate the support of MFMSA as we explore and develop these assets and others as we look further ahead to grow Alto Verde to become a significant copper producer. We have a remarkable team of seasoned mining professionals, both within management and on the board of directors, with decades of exploration and operational experience, as well as a vast network within the industry.  We will leverage these as we grow our company at an accelerated pace”.

Transaction Highlights:

  • Portfolio of three highly-prospective quality assets - Tres Marías, Pitbull and Zenaida
  • Properties located in prolific Chilean Copper Belt, home to 28% of global copper production
  • Excellent infrastructure with power, ports and roads available
  • Favourable acquisition timing – looming gap in copper supply-demand with a tailwind

Tres Marías, Pitbull, and  Zenaida

All three of the Alto Verde copper projects are located in northern Chile within the Central Volcanic Zone (CVZ), home to a majority of the country’s production of copper, with much coming from porphyry-style deposits that are rich in copper, molybdenum, gold and silver by-products. Notable copper miners in the region include Antofagasta Minerals, BHP Billiton, Glencore and FCX among others. With its well-developed sector, Chile is also known as a highly favourable mining jurisdiction within South America, with a long history of strong mining laws support for foreign direct investment.

Tres Marías is a prospective mid-stage exploration group of concessions covering an area of 13,050 ha and is located within the Paleocene-Lower Eocene Central Metallogenic Belt at a 1,600 m elevation with year-round access in the Region of Antofagasta (the “Property”). There is a visible hydrothermal alteration in the outcrops that, based on geological mapping, corresponds to continental clastic sedimentary rocks of the Jurassic Quehuita Formation. FCX previously completed 2,800 m of drilling in 2015 and 2018, performed in the eastern portion of the Property, including 6 diamond drill holes (DDH) and 1,000 m in 2 reverse circulation (RC) holes completed, and there remains much to be followed up on. Highlights from these historical drill holes include TMD-15-02 with 2.4 m of 3.10% Cu and 19 ppm Ag, and TMRC-18-01 with 4.0 m of 4.50% Cu and 121.5 ppm Ag. Drilling also indicated anomalous polymetallic zinc, silver, lead and copper potential. The central and westernmost part of the Property has not been fully assessed despite hosting second priority geophysical targets indicating good potential for copper porphyry discoveries. Initial plans at the site are to reprocess the geophysical ZTEM and Inversion 3D flight data, and perform UAV (Drone) MAG and surface IP in Q3/2021. Data from these studies will determine the drill hole collar locations for a follow-on drilling campaign.

The reader should note that the information and data referred to above, including the drilling results, are historical in nature. A qualified person, as defined in NI 43-101, has not done sufficient work to independently verify the historical information and data disclosed in this document.

Pitbull is an early-stage exploration group of concessions comprising 1,400 ha and located about 25 km north of Anglo American & Glencore’s Collahuasi mine (“Pitbull”), which in 2019 produced more than 565 kt of fine copper with revenues of US$ 3.1 Billion. The group of concessions lies within the Upper Eocene-Lower Oligocene (Mid-Tertiary) Metallogenic Belt, a similar geological zone to that of Collahuasi. Initial plans at the property include a geological mapping campaign and a 164 linear km high resolution detailed magnetic survey covering 14 square kilometres. Data from these studies will determine the drill hole collar locations for a follow-on drilling campaign.

Zenaida is an early-stage exploration group of concessions comprising 1,800 ha, and is also located on the Upper Eocene-Lower Oligocene (Mid-Tertiary) Metallogenic Belt, sharing some similarities to the geology in the Collahuasi region (“Zenaida”). Historical geophysical results indicate the potential for mineralization and warrant further analysis and follow-up by the Company.

Transaction Details

The Company’s subsidiary in the Region of Antofagasta (the “Property”) Marias SpA (“MTM”) acquired the Property for consideration of US$250,000 in cash subject to a repurchase right by MFMSA. The Property is subject to a purchase option by MFMSA such that upon completing US$5 million of qualifying exploration expenditures on the Property within 5 years of execution of the Agreement, MFMSA shall have the right and option to (i) acquire a 51% interest in MTM’s share capital for US$12.5 million, or (ii) acquire a 49% interest in MTM’s share capital for US$250 (collectively with (i), the “Purchase Option”), or (iii) not acquire any interest in MTM. If MFMSA exercises the Purchase Option to acquire a 51% interest in MTM’s share capital, Alto Verde will be granted a 0.5% NSR royalty over the Property. If MFMSA exercises the Purchase Option to acquire a 49% interest in MTM’s share capital, MFMSA will be granted a 1.0% NSR royalty over the Property. MFMSA may also elect not to participate in MTM, in which case it will be granted a 1.0% NSR royalty over the Property. Upon exercise of the Purchase Option by MFMSA, MFMSA will acquire shares in the capital of MTM and AVC and MFMSA will enter into a shareholders agreement to govern the exploration and development of the Property. MTM will also then be “converted” into a “contractual mining company”.  The transaction is also subject to other customary conditions, representations and warranties by each party.

The Company’s subsidiary Minera Alto Verde Chile SpA (“MAVC”) acquired Pitbull and Zenaida for a combined total of US$266,667 in cash and a 1% NSR Royalty over all marketable minerals from each property. Alto Verde has no contractual exploration commitments nor is there any purchase option in respect of these two properties. The transaction is also subject to other customary conditions, representations and warranties by each party.

Review of Technical Information

The scientific and technical information in this press release has been reviewed and approved by Scott Jobin-Bevans, Ph.D., PMP, P.Geo., Principal Geoscientist and Managing Director at Caracle Creek International Consulting Inc., who is an independent consultant and Qualified Person as defined in National Instrument 43-101.

About Alto Verde Copper Inc.

Alto Verde Copper Inc. is a private mining company focused on its portfolio of highly prospective exploration assets located in the Central Volcanic Zone, within a prolific Chilean Copper belt.  

Alto Verde’s portfolio includes three copper exploration projects: Tres Marias and Zenaida in Antofagasta Region, and Pitbull in Tarapaca Region. The Company now holds a significant land package covering an area of 16,250 hectares with the projects situated amongst several of the world’s largest mines owned by the largest global mining companies including Glencore, Anglo American, Teck Resources and BHP among others.

Alto Verde’s leadership team is comprised of senior mining industry executives who have a wealth of technical and capital markets experience and a strong track record of discovering, financing, developing, and operating mining projects on a global scale. Alto Verde is committed to sustainable and responsible business activities in line with industry best practices, supportive of all stakeholders, including the local communities in which we operate.  

Contact Information

For further information please visit our website at or contact:

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Forward Looking Information

This news release contains "forward-looking statements" and "forward-looking information" (collectively, "forward-looking information") within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. All information contained in this news release, other than statements of current and historical fact, is forward-looking information. Often, but not always, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects", "budget", "guidance", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "strategy", "target", "intends", "objective", "goal", "understands", "anticipates" and "believes" (and variations of these or similar words) and statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "should", "might" "occur" or "be achieved" or "will be taken" (and variations of these or similar expressions). Forward-looking information is also identifiable in statements of currently occurring matters which may continue in the future, such as "providing the Company with", "is currently", "allows/allowing for", "will advance" or "continues to" or other statements that may be stated in the present tense with future implications. All of the forward-looking information in this news release is qualified by this cautionary note.

Forward-looking information in this news release includes, but is not limited to, statements regarding the exploration activities and the results of such activities at the Company’s Projects, and the ability of the Company to fund the exploration activities. Forward-looking information is based on, among other things, opinions, assumptions, estimates and analyses that, while considered reasonable by Alto Verde Copper at the date the forward-looking information is provided, inherently are subject to significant risks, uncertainties, contingencies and other factors that may cause actual results and events to be materially different from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking information. The material factors or assumptions that Alto Verde Copper identified and were applied by Alto Verde Copper in drawing conclusions or making forecasts or projections set out in the forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, the success of the exploration activities at the Company’s projects, the ability of the Company to fund its exploration programs, and other events that may affect Alto Verde Copper’s ability to develop its projects; and no significant and continuing adverse changes in general economic conditions or conditions in the financial markets.

The risks, uncertainties, contingencies and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking information may include, but are not limited to, risks generally associated with the mining industry, such as economic factors (including future commodity prices, currency fluctuations, energy prices and general cost escalation), uncertainties related to the development and operation of Alto Verde Copper's projects, dependence on key personnel and employee and union relations, risks related to political or social unrest or change, rights and title claims, operational risks and hazards, including unanticipated environmental, industrial and geological events and developments and the inability to insure against all risks, failure of plant, equipment, processes, transportation and other infrastructure to operate as anticipated, compliance with government and environmental regulations, including permitting requirements and anti-bribery legislation, volatile financial markets that may affect Alto Verde Copper's ability to obtain additional financing on acceptable terms, the failure to obtain required approvals or clearances from government authorities on a timely basis, uncertainties related to the geology, continuity, grade and estimates of mineral reserves and resources, and the potential for variations in grade and recovery rates, uncertain costs of reclamation activities, tax refunds, and hedging transactions.

Should one or more risk, uncertainty, contingency, or other factor materialize, or should any factor or assumption prove incorrect, actual results could vary materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking information. Accordingly, the reader should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. Alto Verde Copper does not assume any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information after the date of this news release or to explain any material difference between subsequent actual events and any forward-looking information, except as required by applicable law.

Alto Verde Copper Inc.

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