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Spencer to head Nevada Copper

Nevada Copper has appointed Australian mining executive Evan Spencer as its new president and CEO, replacing former Barrick Gold and Rio Tinto senior manager Matt Gili whose two years in charge saw production start at the Pumpkin Hollow copper mine in Nevada, USA.
Spencer to head Nevada Copper Spencer to head Nevada Copper Spencer to head Nevada Copper Spencer to head Nevada Copper Spencer to head Nevada Copper

Nevada Copper's Pumpkin Hollow project remains on care and maintenance while the company changes senior leadership

Staff reporter

Spencer has had senior roles with Western Mining Corporation, Placer Dome, Barrick Gold, Kagara, Gold Fields and Aditya Birla Minerals, and also oversaw the ramp-up and production of the Ban Phuc nickel mine.

"[Spencer's] substantial experience of transitioning projects from ramp-up to commercial production and driving ongoing operating efficiencies will be highly valued as Nevada Copper continues its progress through the next stage of its growth as an emerging US copper producer," said Neveda Copper chairman Stephen Gill.

COVID-19 has put the brakes on Pumpkin Hollow's since April 6, a time when it was said to be getting into stride following the production start late last year.

Management say the downtime has been put to good use, with work done to complete the main shaft and advance underground lateral development, which they say will boost production and help de-risk Pumpkin Hollow's ramp-up when the mill is switched on again.

Critical processing staff remain either on site or available to return to site, and the concentrator is in a restart-ready condition.

Nevada Copper says its cash burn has been reduced and it has received support from its key suppliers, providing cost reductions and flexibility during this period.

The company's offtake partner, Concord Resources, agreed to defer concentrate deliveries.

Following ramp-up, the underground mine is expected to produce 65 million pounds copper-equivalent per annum over 13.5 years, at all-in sustaining cost of US$1.86/lb.

Shares in the company (TSX: NCU) have dipped by 65% since the start of the year, hitting a 12-month low of C14c Friday. It has a market capitalisation of $107 million (US$77 million).