Titan Announces Record Production, Permit Approvals and Expansion Plans
VANCOUVER, Jan. 25, 2023 - Titan Mining Corp. (TSX:TI) ("Titan" or the "Company") is pleased to release preliminary fourth quarter ("Q4") and full year 2022 production results and provide 2023 operating, capital and exploration expenditure guidance (all dollar figures are in US dollars, unless otherwise indicated). The Company also announces that it will begin construction on the Sphaleros project.
- Improved safety performance year over year with total recordable injury rate below the national average
- Produced a record 52.5 million payable pounds of zinc in 2022
- Received permit to allow for expanded mining operations in the Sphaleros area and related access roads, and today announces that it will begin construction of the Sphaleros project
- Maintained quarterly cash dividend of C$0.01 per share throughout 2022
- Closed a $40 million credit facility with National Bank, consolidating the Company's debts with Augusta Investments Inc. and Bank of Nova Scotia
- Extended maturity date on the credit facility to December 6, 2024 and made a $5,000,000 payment against the National Bank facility in Q4 2022
Don Taylor, Titan's President and CEO, commented, "In 2022, we continued to reduce our debt and paid a quarterly special dividend. The #4 mine has proven to be a consistent and reliable producer in terms of both tons and grade. Our investment in the mine has been money well spent as we have upgraded equipment, facilities and most importantly developed a loyal and skilled work force. As we continue to spend exploration dollars to find the next deposit, it is also now time to turn our focus to expanding our output in terms of production. The Sphaleros project is a near-mine and fully permitted opportunity for ESM to add to Titan's production profile."
Q4 and Full Year 2022 Preliminary Production Results & 2023 Production Guidance
Total payable zinc production from the Company's Empire State Mine ("ESM") was 14.4 million pounds in Q4 2022 for total annual production of 52.5 million payable pounds within guidance of 52 - 56 million payable pounds. These production numbers are preliminary in nature and subject to change when the Company releases its Q4 2022 and audited full-year 2022 financial and operating results in March 2023.
Production guidance for 2023 is estimated to be between 54-58 million pounds of payable zinc. C1 Cash Cost for 2023 is estimated between $1.08 and $1.12 per payable pound and AISC is estimated between $1.14 and $1.18 per payable pound. Both C1 Cash Cost and AISC are highly dependent on treatment charges which won't be known with certainty until the end of H1 2023. Titan estimates that for every $10 per tonne change to the treatment charge, C1 Cash Cost and AISC are impacted by approximately $0.01 per pound of payable zinc. C1 Cash Cost and AISC guidance for 2023 reflect an estimated annual treatment charge of $250 per tonne of zinc concentrate.
Exploration expenditures will be focused on district targets where the Company controls more than 80,000 acres of private mineral rights. The timing and extent of the exploration program is contingent on positive exploration results. The Company may allocate additional funds beyond guidance as merited.
|ESM Production and Cost Guidance|
|C1 cash cost1||$/lb||1.08 - 1.12|
|AISC1||$/lb||1.14 - 1.18|
|Sustaining||$ millions||4 - 4.5|
|Expansionary||$ millions||4 - 5|
|ESM||$ millions||3 - 4|
1 C1 Cash Cost and AISC are non-GAAP measures. Accordingly, these financial measures are not standardized financial measures under IFRS and might not be comparable to similar financial measures disclosed by other issuers. For additional information, see the section titled "Non-GAAP performance measures" of Titan's MD&A dated November 10, 2022, available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, which section is incorporated by reference herein.
Sphaleros Development Update
The Sphaleros project is an underground development of several ore bodies in the historic #2 mine which are remnants from previous mining or were identified after the mining ceased. The ore zones targeted for extraction at Sphaleros include Turnpike, Hoist House, Pump House, and Streeter in the near term, while the Company plans to simultaneously develop a ramp down through the #2 orebody. Surface and underground diamond drilling will continue to add confidence to each zone while development continues. The Company will purchase several pieces of equipment including loaders, trucks, and jumbos for the Sphaleros project. Recently received permits from the State of New York will allow the completion of an overland surface haul road and related surface infrastructure that will be used to transport mineralized material from the Sphaleros development to the existing milling facility.
Titan's current technical report provides a mineral resource estimate for the #2 open pit project of measured and indicated mineral resources of 43.8M1 contained pounds grading 3.13% zinc and inferred mineral resources of 14.6M contained pounds grading 3.37% zinc. This report also details mineralization beneath the pit shells which was previously unattainable due to open pit permitting restrictions. By developing the new, fully permitted underground operation, the Company intends to mine more mineralized material than from the open pit plan, with lower impacts to the surface and surrounding community, while developing a complete model of the Sphaleros resource from surface to the 2300 level.
Mineralization in the Sphaleros project is similar to that now being mined in the #4 mine. The existing concentrator has sufficient capacity to incorporate the additional throughput. The mineralized material from Sphaleros will be mined underground, hauled to the surface and trucked overland via a new, approximately one mile long, access road to the existing mill facility.
The overland road connecting Sphaleros to the mill facility is substantially complete. Development for the underground portion of the project will begin in Q2/23 with decline development continuing until Q4/23 when mineralized material will be transported to the mill.
The Company advises that it has not based its production decision for the Sphaleros project on a feasibility study of mineral reserves, demonstrating economic and technical viability, and, as a result, there may be an increased uncertainty of achieving any particular level of recovery of minerals or the cost of such recovery, including increased risks associated with developing a commercially mineable deposit. Historically, such projects have a much higher risk of economic and technical failure. There is no guarantee that production will begin as anticipated or at all or that anticipated production costs will be achieved. Failure to commence production could have a material adverse impact on the Company's ability to generate revenue and cash flow to fund operations. Failure to achieve the anticipated production costs could have a material adverse impact on the Company's cash flow and future profitability. The Company further cautions that no mining study has been completed in respect of the economic feasibility of the Sphaleros project. Mineral resources are not mineral reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. There is no certainty that the economic and technical viability of the Sphaleros project will be realized.
1 Comprised of measured mineral resources of 7.0M contained pounds grading 3.34% zinc and indicated mineral resources of 36.8M contained pounds grading 3.09% zinc.
The scientific and technical information in this news release is derived from the technical report titled "Empire State Mines 2021 NI 43-101 Technical Report (Amended)" with an effective date of February 24, 2021, prepared by David A. Warren, Gary Methven, Deepak Malhotra, David Vatterrodt, Ben Peacock, and Matthew Hastings, each of whom are independent qualified persons under National Instrument 43-101 - Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects, and filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
About Titan Mining Corporation
Titan is an Augusta Group company which produces zinc concentrate at its 100%-owned Empire State Mine located in New York state. Titan is built for growth, focused on value and committed to excellence. For more information on the Company, please visit our website at www.titanminingcorp.com.
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Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Information
Certain statements and information contained in this new release constitute "forward-looking statements", and "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities laws (collectively, "forward-looking statements"). These statements appear in a number of places in this new release and include statements regarding our intent, or the beliefs or current expectations of our officers and directors, including 2023 operating, capital and exploration expenditure guidance; plans to begin construction of the Sphaleros project; that it is now time to turn our focus to expanding our output in terms of production and continue to spend exploration dollars to find the next deposit; exploration plans; surface and underground diamond drilling will continue to add confidence to each zone while development continues; that the Company will purchase several pieces of equipment including loaders, trucks, and jumbos for the Sphaleros project; that by developing the new, fully permitted underground operation, the Company intends to mine more mineralized material than from the open pit plan, with lower land and community impacts, while developing a complete model of the Sphaleros resource from surface to the 2300 level; that the mineralized material from Sphaleros will be mined underground, hauled to the surface and trucked overland via a new, approximately one mile long, access road to the existing mill facility; and that development for the underground portion of the project will begin in Q2/23 with decline development continuing until Q4/23 when mineralization will be transported to the mill.. When used in this news release words such as "will", "plans", "intends" and similar expressions are intended to identify these forward-looking statements. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements and/or information are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements since the Company can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results or events to vary materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements, including the risks, uncertainties and other factors identified in the Company's periodic filings with Canadian securities regulators. Such forward-looking statements are based on various assumptions, including assumptions made with regard to assumptions made regarding the treatment charges; assumptions made regarding construction of the Sphaleros project; the ability to advance exploration efforts at ESM; the results of such exploration efforts; the ability to secure adequate financing (as needed); the Company maintaining its current strategy and objectives; and the Company's ability to achieve its growth objectives. While the Company considers these assumptions to be reasonable, based on information currently available, they may prove to be incorrect. Except as required by applicable law, we assume no obligation to update or to publicly announce the results of any change to any forward-looking statement contained herein to reflect actual results, future events or developments, changes in assumptions or changes in other factors affecting the forward-looking statements. If we update any one or more forward-looking statements, no inference should be drawn that we will make additional updates with respect to those or other forward-looking statements. You should not place undue importance on forward-looking statements and should not rely upon these statements as of any other date. All forward-looking statements contained in this news release are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement.