SEMAFO: Positive Mana PFS and Reserve Additions at Mana and Boungou

February 15, 2018

5-Year Average Target of 413,000 Ounces of Annual Production, AISC $696

MONTREAL, Quebec, Feb. 15, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --  

SEMAFO Inc. (TSX:SMF) (OMX:SMF) today announced positive pre-feasibility study (PFS) results at Mana, the addition of 188,000 ounces of reserves, primarily at Siou underground, and an increase of 203,000 ounces of reserves at Boungou. As a result, the Corporation is providing the following consolidated five-year operational targets.

Table 1 - Five-Year Operational Targets

  2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2019-2023
Average
Production1,2,3            
Mana (‘000 oz) 192 213 213 213 214 209
Boungou (‘000 oz) 226 226 201 186 180 204
  418 439 414 399 394 413
AISC1,2,4,5            
Mana ($/oz) 906 1,079 887 823 660 871
Boungou ($/oz) 419 405 527 606 626 516
  643 733 712 721 643 696
Operating Cash Flow (at $1,300/oz)  Total
Revenue ($M) 543 571 539 518 512 2,683
AISC ($M) 268 321 295 287 253 1,424
  275 250 244 231 259 1,259

1 Mana results are based on the Mana PFS by Micon International Ltd., presented in Appendix 3. 
2 Boungou results are based on the updated mine plan presented in Appendix 4.  
3 Assumption: Mineral reserves were estimated using a gold price of $1,200/ oz.

4 All-in sustaining cost is a non-IFRS financial performance measure with no standard definition under IFRS and represents the total cash cost, plus sustainable capital expenditures and stripping costs per ounce.
5 The Mana AISC in the PFS has been updated for this analysis. The costs in the PFS are comparable to current costs except for the US/Euro exchange rate, which has fallen ~10%. Roughly 75% of the AISC is based on CFA, which is linked to the Euro. The AISC has therefore been increased by 10% for the 75% of the cost base.

Highlights of Mana Pre-feasibility Study

  • Siou underground reserves stand at 3,035,000 tonnes at 5.29 g/t Au for 515,800 ounces
  • Siou open-pit reserves stand at 1,579,000 tonnes at 3.57 g/t Au for 181,200 ounces
  • Mana added 188,000 ounces of reserves before depletion, mainly from Siou underground
  • Mana annual production will average over 200,000 ounces between 2019 and 2023 at an all-in sustaining cost of $810 per ounce at a gold price of $1,200
  • Pre-production capital expenditure of $51.7 million, to be financed with existing cash
  • Underground operations eliminate the need to mine 62 million tonnes of open pit waste
  • Mineral reserves at Mana stand at 18.2 million tonnes at a grade of 2.92 g/t Au for 1,710,300 ounces at year-end 2017 based on a gold price of $1,200 per ounce

Mana Pre-feasibility Study

The Mana PFS provides a revised mine plan for all of Mana, including the Wona-Kona open pit, Siou open pit and Siou underground (see Appendix 3). An updated mineral reserves and resources statement for Mana is provided in Appendix 1.

The PFS investigated the potential for extracting the deeper zone of the Siou deposit using underground mining operations, mainly long-hole stoping. Access to the operations will be through a single portal and a 5.5- by 5.5-meter ramp at a 14-gradient slope. The location of the portal will allow mining in the northern part of the Siou pit to continue uninterrupted. The ultimate size of the underground mining operation will be more than 600 meters along strike by 200 meters deep. Figure 1 illustrates the underground mining layout for the Siou mine.

To view Figure 1 - Underground Mining Layout for the Siou Mine  click here: http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/2357d3e5-87a2-4dbc-9bd4-b105d3b03ac1

The PFS is based on a 2,000-tpd operation using contractor mining with discussions already ongoing with potential contractors. The underground mining costs are estimated at $70 per tonne milled. The 18-month development period is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2018.

Table 2 provides an overview of the major milestones for development of Siou underground.

To view Table 2 -Timeline for Development of Siou Underground, click here:   http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/a1214c37-5f2f-49c6-8912-25c625afa09e

The mineral reserves and resources were estimated as at December 31, 2017 in accordance with the definitions adopted by the Canadian Institute of Mining Metallurgy and Petroleum and incorporated into National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects (NI 43-101).

The PFS for the Mana Mine was carried out by an in-house team whose work was reviewed by qualified persons from Micon International Ltd. Micon International Ltd. has reviewed this press release for accuracy and compliance with NI 43-101. Further details will be presented in a NI 43-101 compliant report to be filed on SEDAR within 45 days of the date of this press release.

Boungou Reserves & Resources Update

The 2017 infill drill program at Boungou added 203,000 ounces of reserves and 201,000 ounces of measured and indicated resources.  The additional reserves have been pit-constrained at a $1,200 gold price and are included in the updated reserves and resources statement in Appendix 2. As at December 31, 2017, mineral reserves at Boungou stood at 11.2 million tonnes at 4.11 g/t Au for 1.5 million ounces of gold. The additional reserves support an average production profile of over 200,000 ounces per year between 2019 and 2023 at an average AISC of $516 per ounce.  The updated Boungou mine plan is presented in Appendix 4.

An internal trade-off study was conducted on the West Flank in order to determine whether open pit or underground was the optimal mining approach. Open-pit mining provided better returns compared to an underground mining method.  The remaining underground resources are included in the measured and indicated category, but are not included in the mine plan. Given the open-pit option, no pre-feasibility study is necessary.  

The mineral reserves and resources were estimated as at December 31, 2017 in accordance with the definitions adopted by the Canadian Institute of Mining Metallurgy and Petroleum and incorporated into National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects (NI 43-101). Mineral reserves and resources estimates for the Boungou Mine were carried out by an in-house team under the direction of Michel Crevier P.Geo MScA, Vice-President, Exploration and Mine Geology and SEMAFO’s Qualified Person.

Conference Call

The Corporation will hold a conference call on Friday, February 16 to discuss the pre-feasibility results for Siou underground and the multi-year plan.  Interested parties are invited to join the call and webcast at 8 a.m. EST.

Tel. local & overseas: +1 (647) 788 4922
Tel. North America: 1 (877) 223 4471
Webcast: www.semafo.com
Replay number: 1 (800) 585 8367 or 1 (416) 621 4642
Replay pass code: 8085779
Replay expiration: March 15, 2018

About SEMAFO
SEMAFO is a Canadian-based mining company with gold production and exploration activities in West Africa.  The Corporation operates the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso, which includes the high-grade satellite deposit of Siou, and is targeting production start-up of the Boungou Mine in the third quarter of 2018. SEMAFO’s strategic focus is to maximize shareholder value by effectively managing its existing assets as well as pursuing organic and strategic growth opportunities.

CAUTION CONCERNING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions and accordingly, actual results and future events could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. You are hence cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include words or expressions such as “targets”, “assumptions”, “will”, “assumes”, “estimated”, “milestones”, “expected” and other similar words or expressions. Factors that could cause future results or events to differ materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements include the ability to meet our consolidated five-year operational targets, the ability to meet Mana annual production to average over 200,000 ounces between 2019 and 2023 at an all-in-sustaining cost of $810 per ounce at a gold price of $1,200, the ability to be in line with all assumptions contained in the PFS, the ability to meet all milestones for the development of Siou underground, the ability to execute on our strategic focus, fluctuation in the price of currencies, gold or operating costs, mining industry risks, uncertainty as to calculation of mineral reserves and resources, delays, political and social stability in Africa (including our ability to maintain or renew licenses and permits) and other risks described in SEMAFO’s documents filed with Canadian securities regulatory authorities. You can find further information with respect to these and other risks in SEMAFO’s 2016 Annual MD&A, as updated in SEMAFO’s 2017 First Quarter MD&A, 2017 Second Quarter MD&A and 2017 Third Quarter MD&A, and other filings made with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available at www.sedar.com. These documents are also available on our website at www.semafo.com. SEMAFO disclaims any obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law.

The information in this release is subject to the disclosure requirements of SEMAFO under the Swedish Securities Market Act and/or the Swedish Financial Instruments Trading Act. This information was publicly communicated on February 15, 2018 at 7:20 p.m., Eastern Standard Time.

For more information, contact

SEMAFO
John Jentz
Vice-President, Corporate Development & Investor Relations
Email: John.Jentz@semafo.com

Ruth Hanna 
Analyst, Investor Relations 
Email: Ruth.Hanna@semafo.com   
Tel. local & overseas: +1 (514) 744 4408
North America Toll-Free: 1 (888) 744 4408
Website: www.semafo.com
 

 

 

 

 

Appendix 1 - 2017 Reserves and Resources
Mana, Burkina Faso1,2,3

  DEPOSITS DECEMBER 31, 2017
 
  PROVEN RESERVES PROBABLE RESERVES TOTAL RESERVES 
  Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4 Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4 Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4
MANA1.2.3 WONA-KONA 6,062,000 2.33 453,500 6,280,000 2.22 448,900 12,342,000 2.27 902,400
NYAFÉ 265,000 5.81 49,600 6,000 3.96 700 271,000 5.77 50,300
FOFINA 33,000 4.66 4,900 3,000 3.94 300 36,000 4.49 5,200
SIOU OP 1,400,000 3.78 170,200 179,000 1.92 11,000 1,579,000 3.57 181,200
SIOU UG 1,047,000 5.10 171,600 1,988,000 5.38 344,200 3,035,000 5.29 515,800
YAMA -  - - 651,000 1.75 36,600 651,000 1.75 36,600
ROMPAD 317,000 1,84 18,800  - 317,000 1.84 18,800
TOTAL  9,124,000 2.96 868,600 9,107,000 2.88 841,700 18,231,000 2.92 1,710,300
                     
                     
  DEPOSITS DECEMBER 31, 2017
 
  MEASURED INDICATED TOTAL RESOURCES
  Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4 Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4 Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4
MANA1.2.3 WONA-KONA 1,331,000 2.05 87,800 21,623,000 2.55 1,775,600 22,954,000 2.52 1,863,400
NYAFÉ 286,000 3.94 36,300 223,000 5.97 42,700 509,000 4.83 79,000
FOFINA 293,000 4.25 40,000 253,000 4.45 36,100 546,000 4.34 76,100
YAHO 5,738,000 0.91 168,500 11,636,000 0.88 330,800 17,374,000 0.89 499,300
FILON 67 26,000 2.72 2,300 9,000 3.59 1,000 35,000 2.93 3,300
FOBIRI 469,000 1.80 27,100 114,000 1.52 5,600 583,000 1.74 32,700
SIOU OP 67,000 0.63 1,400 56,000 0.65 1,200 123,000 0.66 2,600
SIOU UG 513,000 3.23 53,200 787,000 3.25 82,300 1,300,000 3.24 135,500
YAMA - - 99,000 1.56 4,900 99,000 1.54 4,900
TOTAL  8,723,000 1.49 416,600 34,800,000 2.04 2,280,200 43,523,000 1.93 2,696,800

 

  DEPOSITS DECEMBER 31, 2017
 
  INFERRED
  Tonnage Grade (g/t Au) Ounces4
MANA1.2.3 WONA-KONA 3,466,000 2.96 329,600
NYAFÉ 151,000 5.87 28,400
FOFINA 67,000 4.20 9,100
YAHO 223,000 0.78 5,600
FILON 67 6,000 6.32 1,100
FOBIRI 578,000 1.39 25,800
MAOULA 2,628,000 1.62 137,100
SIOU 2,093,000 3.86 259,900
YAMA 58,000 1.33 2,500
TOTAL  9,270,000 2.68 799,100


1
The Corporation indirectly owns 90% of SEMAFO Burkina Faso S.A. which directly holds the interest in the Mana Mine reserves and resources.
2 Mineral reserves and resources were estimated using a gold price of $1,200 and $1,400 per ounce, respectively.
3 All mineral resources reported are exclusive of mineral reserves.
4 Rounding of numbers of tonnes and ounces may present slight differences in the figures.

Appendix 2 - Consolidated Reserves and Resources

PROPERTY Mana1.2.4.5.6 Tapoa1.2.4.5.6 Yactibo1.3.4.5.7 Total
(Boungou Mine) (Nabanga Project)
MINERAL RESERVES
Proven
Tonnes 9,124,000 1,584,000 - 10,708,000
Grade (g/t Au) 2.96 6.45 - 3.48
Ounces 868,600 329,000 - 1,197,600
Probable
Tonnes 9,107,000 9,611,000 - 18,718,000
Grade (g/t Au) 2.88 3.72 - 3.31
Ounces 841,700 1,150,000 - 1,991,700
TOTAL MINERAL RESERVES
Tonnes 18,231,000 11,195,000 - 29,426,000
Grade (g/t Au) 2.92 4.11 - 3.37
Ounces 1,710,300 1,479,000 - 3,189,300
MINERAL RESOURCES (exclusive of reserves)
Measured
Tonnes 8,723,000 62,000 - 8,785,000
Grade (g/t Au) 1.49 1.86 - 1.49
Ounces 416,600 4,000 - 420,600
Indicated
Tonnes 34,800,000 4,768,000 - 39,568,000
Grade (g/t Au) 2.04 2.66 - 2.11
Ounces 2,280,200 408,000 - 2,688,200
TOTAL M&I
Tonnes 43,523,000 4,830,000 - 48,353,000
Grade (g/t Au) 1.93 2.65 - 2.00
Ounces 2,696,800 412,000 - 3,108,800
Inferred
Tonnes 9,270,000 855,000 1,840,000 11,965,000
Grade (g/t Au) 2.68 2.08 10.00 3.76
Ounces 799,100 57,000 590,000 1,446,100


1
The Corporation indirectly owns a 100% interest in all of its permits. except for the permits held by SEMAFO Burkina Faso S.A. and SEMAFO Boungou S.A., respectively, in which the Government of Burkina Faso holds a 10% interest.
2 Mineral reserves and resources at Mana and at Tapoa (Boungou Mine) were estimated using a gold price of $1,200 and $1,400 per ounce. respectively.
3 Mineral resources at Yactibo Permit Group (Nabanga project) were reported above a 5.0 g/t Au cut-off grade.
4 Rounding of numbers of tonnes and ounces may present slight differences in the figures.
5 All mineral resources reported are exclusive of mineral reserves.
6 As of December 31. 2017.
7 As of June 30. 2015.

Appendix 3 - Mana Consolidated Life of Mine Plan

    2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 TOTAL LOM
SIOU UG
 Ore processed (t)      -  65,000 654,000 704,000 704,000 705,000 204,000   -  3,036,000
 Head grade (g/t)      -  5.23 5.61 4.97 5.34 5.35 4.92   -  5.29
 Recovery (%)    96% 96% 96% 96% 96% 96% 96%   -  96%
 Gold recovered (oz)      -  10,531 113,206 107,953 116,055 116,450 31,041   -  495,237
 Cash operating cost per tonne ($/t)  1   -  22 106 93 93 81 79   -  90
                     
SIOU
 Waste (t)    12,835,000 15,205,000   -    -    -    -    -    -  28,040,000
 Ore processed (t)    711,000 867,000   -    -    -    -    -    -  1,578,000
 Head grade (g/t)    3.5 3.63   -    -    -    -    -    -  3.57
 Recovery (%)    96% 96%   -    -    -    -    -    -  96%
 Gold recovered (oz)    76,734 97,212   -    -    -    -    -    -  173,945
 Cash operating cost per tonne ($/t)  1 70 68   -    -    -    -    -    -  69
                     
WONA
 Waste (t)    21,126,000 22,566,000 32,189,000 19,822,000 16,602,000 8,050,000 3,203,000 6,286,000 129,844,000
 Ore processed (t)    1,411,000 1,277,000 1,646,000 1,683,000 1,683,000 1,698,000 1,337,000 1,606,000 12,341,000
 Head grade (g/t)    2.31 2.53 2.31 2.4 2.2 2.2 2.35 1.97 2.27
 Recovery (%)    81% 81% 81% 81% 81% 81% 81% 81% 81%
 Gold recovered (oz)    85,050 84,047 99,234 105,305 96,553 97,418 81,786 82,371 731,764
 Cash operating cost per tonne ($/t)  1 60 66 70 52 47 35 30 33 49
                     
Other (Nyafé + Yama + Rompad + Fofina)
 Gold recovered (oz)    19,694   -    -    -    -    -  52,378   -  72,073
                     
MANA CONSOLIDATED
 Waste (t)    34,066,000 37,771,000 32,189,000 19,822,000 16,602,000 8,050,000 14,772,000 6,286,000 169,558,000
 Ore processed (t)    2,475,000 2,209,000 2,300,000 2,387,000 2,387,000 2,403,000 2,463,000 1,606,000 18,230,000
 Head grade (g/t)    2.62 3.04 3.25 3.16 3.13 3.12 2.78 1.97 2.92
 Recovery (%)    87% 89% 88% 88% 89% 89% 75% 81% 86%
 Total Gold recovered (oz)    181,478 191,790 212,441 213,258 212,608 213,868 165,205 82,371 1,473,019
 Cash operating cost per tonne ($/t)  1 63 65 80 64 61 49 41 33 58
 Sustaining capital ($)    10,319,000 8,000,000 18,523,000 13,016,000 7,000,000 3,000,000 3,000,000   -  62,858,000
 All-in sustaining cost ($/oz)  2 968 843 1,004 825 766 614 685 702 809
                     
 Initial capital expenditure - Siou UG  14,496,000 37,175,000   -    -    -    -    -    -  51,671,000
                     
 Gold @ 1,200/oz                     
 Revenues - Gold sales    217,773,000 230,148,000 254,929,000 255,910,000 255,130,000 256,641,000 198,246,000 98,845,000 1,767,622,000
 Total all-in sustaining expense ($)    175,684,000 161,695,000 213,341,000 175,916,000 162,905,000 131,251,000 113,224,000 57,791,000 1,191,807,000
 Operating cash-flow ($)    42,089,000 68,453,000 41,588,000 79,994,000 92,225,000 125,390,000 85,022,000 41,054,000 575,815,000


1
Cash operating cost per tonne is a non-IFRS financial performance measure with no standard definition under IFRS and is calculated using total operating costs related to tonnes processed (which includes capitalized stripping activities) over tonnes processed.

2 All-in sustaining cost is a non-IFRS financial performance measure with no standard definition under IFRS and represents the total mining operation expenses  (which includes capitalized stripping activities), plus sustainable capital expenditures.

Appendix 4 - Boungou Life of Mine Plan

    2018 (pre production) 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 TOTAL LOM
Boungou
Waste (t)     13,485,000   6,803,600   24,934,000   24,887,000   25,211,000   26,499,000   21,872,000   20,457,000   649,000     164,797,600
Ore processed (t)     180,000   449,000   1,343,000   1,343,200   1,343,200   1,343,200   1,343,200   1,343,200   1,343,200   1,163,800   11,195,000
Head grade (g/t)     1.85   4.87   5.58   5.60   4.99   4.61   4.46   3.00   2.10   2.00   4.11
Recovery (%)   90.1% 93.3% 93.7% 93.7% 93.5% 93.5% 93.5% 91.0% 91.0% 89.6% 92.9%
Total Gold recovered (oz)     9,646   65,592   225,757   226,600   201,486   186,142   180,086   117,895   82,527   67,051   1,362,783
Cash operating cost per tonne ($/t)1       75   67   66   76   81   81   79   52   38   66
Sustaining capital ($)       2,758,000   3,992,000   3,892,000   4,000,000   4,000,000   4,000,000   4,000,000   4,000,000   4,000,000   34,642,000
All-in sustaining cost ($/oz)2       555   419   405   527   606   626   934   895   719   570
                         
                         
1 Cash operating cost per tonne is a non-IFRS financial performance measure with no standard definition under IFRS and is calculated using total operating costs related to tonnes processed (which includes capitalized stripping activities) over tonnes processed.
2 All-in sustaining cost is a non-IFRS financial performance measure with no standard definition under IFRS and represents the total mining operation expenses (which includes capitalized stripping activities), plus sustainable capital expenditures.

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Source: SEMAFO Inc.