What Nova Bollinger can tell us about our KSZ B Conductors…

Barring any last-minute issues, we’re on course to start drilling the B1 Conductor in the Kalahari Suture Zone this Friday. We expect it will take about four weeks to drill to target depth, but we are mindful of the challenges we encountered last time we were here.

The two biggest problems we faced were the vertical fractures in the rocks immediately above the target zone (including some significant cavities that led to 100% water loss) and the expanding clays that caused us to lose a drill string.

Successfully completing the hole, given the treacherous conditions, is testament to the quality of our drill partner, Mindea Exploration & Drilling Services. We are looking forward to working with them again and are confident they are the right people to get the job done.

This time around, we enter the drill campaign forewarned. Now that we know what we are dealing with, we’ve been able to prepare accordingly. We have put in place substantial water supplies, we’ve designed the programme to account for the specific rock layers we expect to encounter, and we will have the Down Hole ElectroMagnetic probe on site to allow us to take regular readings to confirm we are on track.

We’ve really done all we can to give us the greatest chance of hitting that 28,700 Siemens target.

The question now is, what is the B1 Conductor?

There aren’t many things this could be in nature.

We all hope it will prove to be massive sulphides, but until we retrieve the core we won’t know.

Massive sulphides, to recap, are large deposits consisting predominantly of chemical compounds of sulphur and metal. They are associated with many of the world’s largest nickel, copper, and platinum group element (“PGE”) production.

The prize on offer is truly enormous.

With a conductance of 28,700 Siemens, our B1 Target in particular is well into the range accepted by nickel-copper specialist geophysicists for massive sulphides.

We believe we narrowly missed B1 when we attempted to drill into it last year. While this was extremely disappointing, the Down Hole EM survey gave us much encouragement. It confirmed the presence of this body, within 50m or so of where our hole was.

And there are other reasons why such a near miss could prove to be very positive for our prospects now.

As part of our detailed preparation for this drill campaign, we have completed a great deal of desktop work. Nickel expert Richard Hornsey has worked with our physical data, while Jeremy, Hillary and Dr Hamid Mumin have completed a number of important studies so we could learn from the experience of others.

Interestingly, their work revealed a number of key parallels between Kavango’s progress and that of Sirius Resources prior to its discovery of Nova Bollinger in western Australia.

First identified in 2012, Nova Bollinger went on to become one of Australia’s largest ever nickel-copper sulphide deposits. It generated a huge amount of value for Sirius and its shareholders when the company was acquired for A$1.8 billion by Independence Group in 2015. Today, Nova Bollinger produces approximately 1.3 million tonnes of nickel, copper, and cobalt every year.

As we all know, correlation does not necessarily mean causation. But given the scale of Sirius’ success at Nova Bollinger and its existing similarities with the KSZ, it’s worth looking at the two projects side by side as we prepare to take another pass at B1.

Drawing parallels
As was the case with Nova Bollinger for Sirius Resources, the KSZ currently represents a large exploration opportunity for Kavango.

For one thing, we believe it displays a geological setting with distinct similarities to the world-class magmatic sulphide deposits at Norilsk in Siberia. Norilsk alone accounts for 90% of Russia’s nickel reserves, 55% of its copper, and virtually all of its PGEs.

The KSZ is also literally vast. The anomaly spans 450km and our project licences cover 8,831km2 of ground – a very large package by any explorer’s measures.

Like Sirius did with Nova Bollinger, we have taken a technology-led approach to exploration across our 8,831km2 in the Kalahari Suture Zone. We’ve often talked about the potential for a Norilsk style model, but it is worth noting Richard Hornsey’s comments last summer where he noted the potential similarity between the KSZ and Fraser Range.

Fraser Range happens to host Nova Bollinger.

The specific technology used by ourselves and Sirius differs slightly. But essentially, we’ve both used a combination of surface electromagnetic surveying and downhole electromagnetic surveys to find high conductance, high priority drill targets.

For Sirius, their surveys identified a number of nickel-prospective conductors within a magnetic structure known as “the Eye”. These can be seen below…


For us, our work identified the cluster of prospective B Conductors within a structure known as the “Great Red Spot” – again, seen below:

In fact, technological developments over the past decade have enabled us to take our target refinement even further than Sirius. As highlighted in our recent RNS

  • Controlled Source AudioMagnetotelluric (“CSAMT”) data suggests the B1 Target area contains “sills”. These are thin, horizontal formations formed when molten magna intrudes into layers of rock. When this magma contains metal ions, it can lead to the formation of massive sulphides during the cooling process.
  • Time Domain Electromagnetic and Downhole Electromagnetic surveys have sharpened our understanding of the B1 Target, allowing us to remodel it over a more constrained zone. The Target’s surface area is now in the typical size range for massive sulphide bodies
  • Desktop studies have led us to believe B1 could be associated with pyrrhotite. Pyrrhotite is very conductive and often associated with nickel-bearing minerals in massive sulphide bodies.
  • Our data has also effectively been able to rule out a number of possible causes for B1’s conductance such as coal and saline aquifers. These enhance the probability that the electrical conductivity in the Target area is, in fact, being generated by massive sulphides.

Working hard for success
These are all great additional pre-drilling indicators that we hope to increase our chances of success. But what will really get the needle moving for Kavango is the successful intersection of B1 and physical proof of the presence of massive sulphides.

Again, parallels with Sirius’ work at Nova Bollinger provide encouraging precedent.

As we know, our first attempt to intersect the B1 Target early last year was unsuccessful. But after processing the data gathered, and that we subsequently collected in the time since drilling took place, we now:

  • Believe we narrowly missed the B1 Target;
  • Are confident we can intersect B1 via drilling; and
  • Are targeting not one but three conductors (B1, B3, and B4)

We don’t yet know whether we will intersect B1. Nor do we know what we will find if we do. However, what’s important for now is that our journey at B1 so far is very similar to the one that preceded Sirius’ discovery of Nova Bollinger.

Take a look at the image below:

The interesting hole to look at is Hole SFRC0025. You can see on the illustration above how close that hole was to the Nova Bollinger deposit. It was less than 20 meters away, but had “no significant intersection”.

This highlights how thin the margin can be between success and failure in nickel exploration. Once you take away luck, the key to exploration success is a mix of patience, perseverance, and technical work that can constantly improve targeting.

This brings us back to the importance of the Down Hole EM surveys. We all have to credit Jeremy here. He has been the driving force behind ensuring we pursue the rigorous exploration programme we have.

That down hole data tells us loud and clear that we just narrowly missed B1 and that the target is extremely conductive. Could we be about to discover another Nova Bollinger?

I certainly hope so.

We now all need to let Mindea get on with their job and wait to see what we hit.

What we’re learning from our neighbours in the KCB…

I don’t often comment on other companies, but in this week’s Boots on The Ground I want to take a look at a significant development made by one of our neighbours in the Kalahari Copper Belt.

10 days ago, ENRG Elements reported a cluster of anomalous, previously undrilled, chargeability anomalies at its Ghanzi West copper-silver project. (You can read the full ENRG announcement >>>HERE).

Ghanzi West lies immediately to the east of our Karakubis project and ENRG’s exploration results carry a a number of positive implications for our own efforts.

Painting a positive picture
To recap quickly, ENRG identified three domal features over Ghanzi West last year through Airborne Electromagnetic (“AEM”) and gravity surveying.

Importantly, these bear a striking similarity to domes discovered along strike by Sandfire at its Motheo Copper mine.

This was already positive for Kavango, as Karakubis lies adjacent to Motheo to the north (as well as land held by Rio Tinto to the west).

To follow up, ENRG completed Induced Polarisation, or IP, surveys over potential “trap sites” for mineralisation across the three targets.

Then, on 04 April, it announced that the work had – among other things – identified multiple high priority drill targets the firm will now go on to develop.

So, what exactly could this mean for us?

1) We appear to be exploring the same geological system as ENRG
As we previously announced, analysis of regional satellite gravity data points to a possible “basin margin” running from our Karakubis licence block into Ghanzi West.

ENRG’s claim that the strike length of D’Kar/Ngwako Pan formation contact style mineralisation could extend for 66km along the northern and southern boundaries of its survey area is, therefore, very encouraging for us and aligns with our interpretation.

For ENRG to have identified so many prospective drill targets on their ground gives us increasing confidence about the prospects of our own.

2) We appear to have similar geological features
Building on the previous point, ENRG’s combination of AEM and IP survey data confirmed positive geological characteristics at Ghanzi West.

We believe that Karakubis shares many of these.

Namely, the company said the lower D’Kar rock is tightly folded and extensively structurally deformed, greatly enhancing the potential for trap sites that host economic mineralisation.

It also believes there is the possibility of flatly dipping D’Kar/Ngwako Pan formation contact style mineralisation within 100-250m of surface over tens of kilometres of strike length.

We’ve made very similar initial observations about Karakubis, where our AEM and Controlled-Source Audio Magnetotelluric (“CSAMT”) surveys have indicated the likely abundant presence of tightly folded rocks at moderate depths. Remember, our drilling at PL082 confirmed we’ve developed a particularly powerful configuration for CSAMT surveys to identify such features from surface. This could be a huge advantage for us as we move forward with our exploration at Karakubis.

We’ll continue to complete our interpretation of our AEM and CSAMT survey data for the project to build on our initial observations around its structure and metal potential.

But to have the geological characteristics we’ve observed at Karakubis confirmed “next door” is an obvious plus point.

3) There appears to be a new technological advance we can benefit from
Finally, through the success of its work, it looks like ENRG has configured a form of IP survey that can be used to identify priority drill targets in this area of the KCB.

If this stands the test of the “truth detector” it will be a notable advance in the region, as it opens up another useful avenue for all our exploration efforts.

It adds to the growing toolset we’ve already contributed to with our deployment of CSAMT to identify zones of structural disturbance, brecciation, and alteration as well as anticlines and synclines from surface in the KCB.

Now, we have the option to use IP surveys to explore any prospective targets our own planned exploration efforts highlight both in Karakubis and our wider KCB land package.

Pushing us forward 
There’s no guarantee that our progress at Karakubis will mirror ENRG’s at Ghanzi West. We need to complete our own exploration to assess the project’s mineral prospectivity.

But just as the third-party holes have supported our model for Ditau’s lode gold potential, ENRG’s latest results complement our exploration plans at an important stage in our quest to make metal discoveries.  

And at no extra cost, to boot.

The unearthed drillhole opening a window into Ditau’s gold potential…

It’s often said that nothing comes for free.

Nine times out of ten, I would agree – certainly when it comes to mineral exploration. That being said, I feel we bucked the trend with our news on Friday.

If you haven’t already seen, we announced a significant extension to our mineralised Banded Iron Formation (“BIF”) at Ditau.

This alone is excellent news, assisting in the ongoing developing of our lode gold model for the project. What makes the development even better this time around, however, is that it has incurred no additional cost to Kavango.

Instead, our progress here boils down to some initiative and a great deal of much-appreciated support from the Botswana Geological Institute. With this in mind, I thought I’d take the opportunity to share some more on this fortunate turn of events…


Building momentum at Ditau

Really, the circumstances that led to this positive development date back to this time last year. It was around this point we were preparing for our own drilling campaign to test the i10 anomaly at Ditau, originally targeting the carbonatite theory our team had developed.

While doing a recce in the field, Hillary came across two recently drilled exploration holes – evidenced by the concrete caps covering them.

To be honest, we pretty quickly had a good idea of how they got there.

The caps told us the pair of holes were drilled in 2021. Given we were the metal exploration licence holders at this time, we knew they were almost certainly diamond exploration holes. This is possible because in Botswana metal and diamond licences can overlap.

Photo from Hillary’s field journal from when he first found Hole X077 (his notepad is on top of the cap)Photo from Hillary’s field journal from when he first found Hole X077 (his notepad is on top of the cap).

From here, we then took an educated guess that another company had, like us, been targeting i10, but working on the theory that it was a kimberlite capable of hosting diamonds. We also interpreted the lack of follow-up as an indicator that this third party had not found what they were looking for and had moved on.

Parking this for the time being, we pushed forward with our own drilling of i10.

Our first hole, DITDD003, did not hit anything.

However, our second hole–DITDD004–encountered a 100m thick mineralised “Zone of Interest” from 293m to 393m. This contained anomalous gold and copper values and remained open at depth at the end of the hole.

Fast forward to 2023, and a report authored by Dr. Mumin of Brandon University posited that this Zone of Interest is likely to be part of a very thick mineralised Banded Iron Formation–or “BIF”. Moreover, he wrote that the alteration and deformation present in core from this BIF suggests excellent potential for a large-scale lode gold system.

This, as I’ve written before, immediately presented us with a very exciting opportunity at Ditau; lode gold systems are responsible for vast precious metal deposits globally.

So to advance our understanding of this new model quickly, we launched into an accelerated work programme detailed at the end of this announcement.

This work is ongoing. However, I couldn’t shake the feeling that those two diamond drilling holes we’d previously encountered could add a great deal of value. After all:

  • The holes had already been drilled, potentially providing ready access to core
  • They were drilled into our primary target zone, just 470m northeast of DITDD004
  • They were exploration holes specifically, potentially cutting out the onerous piecing together of geological info from various boreholes that typically takes place during historical logging

Shortly after receiving Dr. Mumin’s report, I reached out to inquire about the two existing holes over i10.

I quickly learned that we were correct in our assumptions around the additional exploration activity at i10. The first of the two holes was abandoned at 60m (this happens in drilling, as we recently saw in the Kalahari Copper Belt), but the second hole–X077– was drilled to 189m.

The Institute also, very graciously, agreed to come with us when we went to review the drill core and logs from Hole X077, now under its ownership.

Naturally, we were delighted at the offer and immediately flew Brett out to complete an initial review alongside our team on the ground.

Suffice it to say, the core has been very useful.

As detailed in Friday’s announcement, we found that Hole X077 was stopped in the same mineralised BIF we intersected with Hole DITDD004. With this, we can draw two important initial conclusions…

First, we now know that the mineralised BIF spans at least 470m to the northwest of DITDD004 – the distance between the two holes. It could be much longer, and our work moving forward will aim to delineate its true length in more detail.

Second, while we already know the mineralised BIF is very thick thanks to the 100m length of our Zone of Interest, we now have more data to support the theory that its even thicker.

After all, both Hole DITDD004 and Hole X077 ended in mineralised BIF– in other words, where things were still very interesting. This could extend even further, and we already have interesting visual indicators about how far things could go. We’ll be publishing more on this in the future.


Cross-section viewed west, showing Hole DITDD004 and Hole DITDD003, drilled by Kavango, and Hole X077, drilled by the Third Party. Zones of interpreted mineralised BIF are shown in red hatch at the end of Hole DITDD004 and Hole X077, indicating a broader mineralised BIF system extending for at least 470m between holes.

Cross-section viewed west, showing Hole DITDD004 and Hole DITDD003, drilled by Kavango, and Hole X077, drilled by the Third Party. Zones of interpreted mineralised BIF are shown in red hatch at the end of Hole DITDD004 and Hole X077, indicating a broader mineralised BIF system extending for at least 470m between holes.


Accelerating forward

We will now complete more thorough analysis of core from Hole X077 to build on our initial findings and potentially uncover new ones. We’ll also be taking a good look at core from another hole drilled by the third part in the vicinity – one of which we were unaware until arriving for the core review for the BGI. This is another intriguing lead and we look forward to providing an update on what we uncover.

The key point is that the pace at which Ditau has developed into – and is continuing to develop into – an extremely exciting play is striking.

Really, it sums up just how quickly things can change in the exploration space and – quite frankly – how a sprinkle of fortune can sometimes be the driver. After all, Kavango is now enjoying the full benefits of exploration data taken from a hole driven straight into our primary target zone without incurring any of the costs of drilling.

To finish, I’d like to thank wholeheartedly the Botswana Geological Institute for its support, and I am looking forward to sharing more information when we have it.

More detail on Ditau and plans going forward

I’m on the ground in Africa as I write this.

And reception isn’t great where I am at the moment.

But, before I left, I was able to jump on a call with Mark Fairbairn at Stock Box to give some more detail on Ditau. If you’ve not heard our conversation yet, I thought you might find it useful.

You should be able to link to listen to it here

After a few days in Johannesburg, where I’ve been for several very fruitful meetings, I’m heading north now with Peter Wynter Bee to explore some further project leads we have to help us achieve our strategic plan.

We’re still doing due diligence on those so I can’t go into much more detail—but plans are progressing and I’m confident our strategy is the right one.

Indeed, a large part of the Kavango team is out here in Africa right now on various missions to advance work across all our projects.

Brett was in Ditau following up on the great news that we could be zoning in on what we hope could well become a discovery…

Peter and I are then meeting up with Brett and Hilary Gumbo to complete our final due diligence.

Across the board, things are moving forward very nicely and as soon as I’m back in London next week, I look forward to updating you further.

In the meantime, though, do take a moment to have a listen to my interview with Mark, as I go into more detail about the next steps for Ditau and how we’re continuing to progress at the KSZ and KCB.

Here’s the link.

Before I do sign off, I know I say it often, but it’s worth saying again…

Every time I’m here in Africa, wherever I am, I’m once again reminded how beautiful and vibrant a place it is. This is enormous potential to build something special.

It really is a privilege to be able to do the work we do here.

The foundation is built, now it’s time to realise our potential

It’s been an extremely busy period for Kavango, and for me personally.
With so much going on, I’ve not had nearly enough time as I’d like to update you on the progress we’re making.
Thankfully, I’m back in the UK now after a research trip to Southern Africa, and I’m busy actioning many of the plans we’ve been developing.
In fact, you may have already seen our news release about our new strategic plan.
In case you’ve not had a chance to read the RNS yet, it’s worth reviewing the three key pillars of the strategy.
Here’s the first pillar:
1. Botswana Exploration 
Kavango's technical team will execute the Company's updated exploration plan in Botswana, with the support of external expert exploration geologists. Over 2023, Kavango will conduct focussed exploration on the Great Red Spot ("GRS") in the Kalahari Suture Zone ("KSZ"), which will include drilling the B Conductors. Kavango will also continue further fieldwork and drilling in the Kalahari Copper Belt ("KCB") across its Karakubis block and investigate the Iron Oxide Copper Gold (IOCG) model for the GRS and the precious metal potential at Ditau.
The next key element is in regard to financing:
2. Botswana Project Financing 
In parallel to the Botswana exploration plan, Kavango's commercial team will seek direct project funding to finance 2-year exploration programmes for the Company's KSZ, KCB and Ditau projects. Kavango has advanced all three projects to the point where direct finance will enable the Company to pursue much more extensive exploration. Expanded exploration programmes will include more widespread surveying (geophysical and geochemical), sharper targeting and extensive drilling. Kavango believes securing one or more project finance partners would significantly increase the chances of success in Botswana.
Finally, we’re looking to expand our portfolio:
3. Portfolio Expansion 
Kavango will seek to acquire prospective metal exploration projects, with the potential for near-term economic discoveries, in Southern Africa. Following completion of its strategic financing in Q4 2022, Kavango is well-positioned to take advantage of liquidity weakness in the global exploration sector. The Company has put together a skilled exploration team, built a strong regional presence in Botswana and identified a pipeline of possible acquisition targets. The Company has been evaluating a number of these opportunities and is at advanced stages of due diligence for two possible acquisitions.
Of course, this is a high-level look at what we plan to do. Over the next few weeks, we’ll share more detail about our specific operational plans.
But today, I want to start unpicking the overriding plan by speaking openly about where we are right now.
The bottom line is, I believe we’re in a very strong position.
In Kavango, we have built what I think is a very good exploration company.
We have three excellent projects on our books, and we’ve now run many of the hard yards. Our ‘proof of concept’ drill campaigns have significantly deepened our understanding of our ground and enabled us to sharpen our focus in the next phase of exploration: 

  • We have plans in place for exploring the B conductors at the Kalahari Suture Zone 
  • We have the work we’re doing at Karakubis (which I’ll update you on soon), and... 
  • We have the precious metals lead at Ditau

With each of these projects, we are designing new work programmes that will give us clear decision points to act on and lead to clear results.
Indeed, it’s important to point out that, as a business, we have moved beyond the proof-of-concept stage in Botswana.
The next time we mobilise the rig it will be for discovery drilling…
Make no mistake. At Kavango we all understand the importance of this work and how it is imperative we make tangible progress.
But still, these are large-scale plays. There aren’t many companies of Kavango’s size that have tried to pull off what we hope to achieve and I understand that shareholders want to see progress, to see clear value being added.
To this point, I recognised last summer that we needed to balance our portfolio.
Botswana is a very positive jurisdiction, a very safe place to explore. But as I’ve spoken about before, the Kalahari sand cover makes it a very challenging jurisdiction too. Our entire exploration strategy is geophysics led. We have very little surface geology to work with, which makes our job that much harder.
That’s why, in the background, I’ve been working on expanding our portfolio into a new jurisdiction to help bolster our work in Botswana.
I’ve been out in the field, visiting potential sites and meeting local operators with an extremely experienced exploration geologist. My goal was to discover as much as I could on the ground about the jurisdiction I hope to take us into. Above all, I wanted to learn all I could about the practicalities and risks of the local operating environment, from logistical issues and the local employment market to the strength of local infrastructure.
My ultimate goal in all this is to add opportunities to our portfolio where there is clear (at surface!) geological potential and the chance of nearer-term commercial wins.
This is key.
The fact is that the technical work we’ve been doing these past few years has been focussed on really deep targets. While this has made our jobs harder, it has put us in a very strong position to be able to deploy our skills on “easier” ground.
I now want to put our technological edge to work and apply those advances (such as we’ve made with CSAMT) to areas where there is outcropping and, as I say, more attractive geology much closer to surface.
So, as part of our new strategic approach, we’re putting together a comprehensive plan to explore this new jurisdiction. Peter Wynter Bee, Brett Grist, and I will go to see our main new proposed project. As soon as I’m able to reveal more information about it, I will.
Ultimately, as I say, this is about balance.
More than anyone else, I am keen to deliver not just long-term success to Kavango shareholders, but near-term success too.
Our work over the last few years has placed us in a position to do that, but at the same time, it’s important to reflect on where we are and put in place a clear strategy that will enable us to realise our full potential.
The release of our new strategic plan is another step towards achieving this, and, over the coming weeks, you’ll see there are many more developments being realised that I hope will help us progress even further.
It’s a very exciting time and I’m looking forward to what the next leg of the Kavango journey may bring. 

Advocating for critical minerals begins at home…

You may have noticed on social media last week that we announced that we had become members of the Critical Minerals Association.

The might not relate directly to our ongoing progress on the ground in Botswana.

However, I view it as an important step in Kavango’s overall corporate development.

You see, our membership really gives us a chance to have a larger industry voice.

The CMA is an industry body emerging as a key focal point for expertise in mining and the supply of key metals into the UK.

Specifically, it recognises the urgent need to identify new sources of critical minerals and to support a robust minerals extraction industry for the UK to deliver economic stability and future growth.

These are needs the British government is also waking up to; especially post-Brexit.

Increasingly, home-grown mining projects are being supported by Westminster, which is why a significant portion of the CMA’s member companies have projects in the British Isles.

A couple of well-known industry consultants like SRK and Wood Mackenzie are also members, although there’s no doubt that the company with the biggest clout is Rio Tinto.

But the membership also includes a smattering of UK-listed companies with assets overseas.

And now Kavango joins the ever-growing list.

What’s in it for us?

First, as good citizens of the UK, we share the central aim of the CMA – to establish metal supply chains within and into the UK that are as robust as possible. A strong UK economy is good for the people of the UK, and it’s good for the world.

In recent decades, though, there hasn’t been a great deal of actual mining activity in Great Britain itself. The finance that comes out of London has, by and large, gone overseas. And what that means is that while the private sector remains reasonably well acquainted with the mining industry, the government is less so.

In a world where supply chains have recently been severely tested, and in which tarrifs and trading blocs have recently re-emerged as a powerful force, this has resulted in a steep learning curve for our authorities.

The CMA aims to tap into that new openness, and at the same time to use its contacts to advocate for the industry.

Kavango can play a key role in these endeavours, and not only in advocacy either.

Our portfolio of projects in Botswana is prospective for a range of critical metals, from rare earths at Ditau, to copper, nickel, and platinum group elements at the Kalahari Suture Zone, to yet more copper as well as silver on our Kalahari Copper Belt licences.

Over time, mainlining production of these elements back to the UK might well work out as a win-win all round.

After all, we’re increasingly seeing exploration and development in the mining sector couched in national terms: Germany was recently reported to be interested in securing assets in the Lithium Triangle of South America, China has extensive copper interests in the Congo, France has uranium assets in Central Africa.

To date, not much has been written about Britain moving in on mining assets overseas. No doubt, this is in large part because, for historic reasons, many of the major mining companies are domiciled in Britain anyway. But it’s also because a Critical Metals Strategy is a relatively new development in Britain.

That being so, we feel it is both expedient and in the broad general interest to get in on the ground floor.

The CMA is helping to create a sophisticated network of mining industry and government professionals of a kind that hasn’t existed before. Being a part of that network could well be crucial to securing new opportunities and know-how in the years ahead.

What’s more, the opportunity to become aligned with best practice in regard to environmental and social standards is something that all companies should aspire to, and which the CMA’s association with the UK government looks set to promote.

How do we know this?

For one thing, officialdom is now in full swing: the House of Commons Select Committee on Critical Minerals met towards the end of last year, and received amongst other things, a presentation from directors of CMA member company Pensana Metals.

More than that, though, Kavango’s chief operating officer, Brett Grist, previously co-chaired the CMA’s UK mining working group, which successfully opened up several channels of communication with the UK government.

As we continue to explore our licence packages, we see building on Brett’s experience with our own CMA as being highly complementary to ouir growth.

Additions to the Kavango team bring to light even more portfolio opportunities

As I pointed out in the last edition of Boots on the Ground...
We’re coming into 2023 in a strong position.
But that doesn’t mean we’re sitting on our laurels.
Far from it.
True success, I believe, comes from continuous improvement. It’s important to always be looking for ways, however marginal, to progress, to find a smarter, more efficient, more ambitious way to do things.
It’s why, here at Kavango, we continue to review and assess what we’re doing to make sure we’re doing it in the best way we can. We continually seek to enhance our approach, both technically and strategically.
One such improvement we’ve made recently started a few months ago.
While I was in Botswana towards the end of last summer, I met Dave Catterall.
Dave is well-known, with more than 30 years’ experience in the industry, and there isn’t much he doesn’t know about the Kalahari Copper Belt.
It’s why, after some enlightening discussions with him, I asked him to help us better understand what we had in the KCB. Since then, he’s been working with us to help us assess our portfolio and advise on how we should approach the land we’re prospecting. He’s formed an especially productive working relationship with Jeremy.
One of the potential areas Dave has helped us highlight as one that might offer much greater opportunity than we realised is covered by our licences near the Namibian border.
A potentially positive crossover 
ENRG Elements (ASX:EEL) recently completed some airborne electromagnetic surveys of West Ghanzi and announced it has identified “multiple high priority exploratory drill targets” in the area.
You can read the full announcement here.
It sounds like good news for ENRG…but it could be great news for us too.
Because structures in the area that company has surveyed extend into ground covered by our own licences.
It’s one of the reasons Dave has recommended we take a closer look at our licences near the border as a priority. He’s recently been on the ground in Botswana, working with our team to explore further the potential here in our portfolio.
Don’t get me wrong, our most immediate priority continues to be the drilling we’ve restarted at PL082. What we find there could have a huge impact itself.
But by actively working with people like Dave to review, assess, and maximise the potential of our full portfolio in Botswana, I believe it’s more evidence of our determination to find the greatest success we can.
Indeed, another step we’ve just taken to keep pushing things forward is engaging another extremely experienced technical geologist, Steve Smith.
Ex-Anglo man focuses on the technical 
Steve is a very experienced South African geologist and has been a good friend and guide ever since I joined Kavango.
An ex-Anglo-American man, he has experience of working in Tanzania, Namibia and Zimbabwe. I’ve personally known Steve for several years. I particularly admire his work and approach to exploration.
Given his experience, in December I asked him to look at what we’re doing in Botswana from a technical point of view with a mind to maximise our potential across all of our licences.
Steve’s already provided a very interesting report internally, prompting me to ask him to head up a new technical advisory group that is now carrying out a full review into our operations with a view to updating the market in due course.
Working with Dave and Steve will, I believe, help us to continue improving our approach in Botswana and make sure we maximise the enormous opportunities we have here across all our projects.
Laying out our strategy for 2023 
To formalise all of this—and to make sure we continue to communicate in a clear and open way with all our shareholders and partners—we are in the process of finalising a forward-looking strategy that will outline the five key pillars of our approach for 2023.
We’ll be updating the market on that very shortly, and in my next edition of Boots on the Ground I’ll dig deeper into each element of the strategy to give you even more insight into what we have planned for this year.
But the bottom line is simple…
We are in a strong position. We are determined to keep improving. And we will do everything we can to make sure we achieve our primary goal of making metal discoveries.
Of course, in the meantime, if you have any questions about our plans, or what we’re doing across our various projects, my inbox is always open.
You can email your questions at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I’ll look to cover any issues you raise in a future edition of Boots on the Ground.

New year, new appointments, new way forward

So here we are: 2023.
We certainly made a lot of technical progress across our portfolio last year amid difficult macroeconomic conditions. But this is a “show me” market. What it wants to see is metal on the books, and it is our job to deliver this.
So, where do I stand on our prospects for the coming year?
I’m quietly confident. 
Don’t get me wrong, the market is still fragile and, with the economy wobbling, I suspect there are still a fair number of challenges to come.
But as I said in my last update during the festive break, where the small cap space is concerned, and specifically where Kavango is concerned…
I think things are looking very positive.
Well, aside from the strong performance in metal prices, all the technical advances we made in 2022, the physical evidence of our projects’ prospectivity we’ve gathered, the significant finance we’ve raised, the improvements we’ve made across the business, and, of course, the developments we’re seeing in our drill campaign in the Kalahari Copper Belt (“KCB”)…
You may have seen that we closed out last year by making two new appointments to our board.

Building on our corporate and technical experience 
It’s a real pleasure to welcome Peter Wynter Bee and Jeremy S. Brett as directors of Kavango.
Jeremy has been working with us for a while now. I recruited him in February 2021, and he has already played a key role in enhancing our exploration programmes. It’s not been easy. Dealing with various legacy issues in Kavango has been hard work, but Jeremy has been steadfast throughout.
Jeremy is highly talented and has developed close working relationships with the other key players we brought into the business in 2022.
“Old” Kavango struggled with this in the past, but today we are able to have serious, technical and commercial discussions with external parties thanks in part to Jeremy’s work. The recent progress we made with Sandfire has been a perfect case in point.
Having already had such a profound influence on Kavango, it made perfect sense to consolidate Jeremy’s position and have him join our board. In this role, he can better shape and support our ambitions going forward.
Jeremy is an extremely experienced geophysical consultant, having spent more than 28 years in international mineral exploration. There aren't many commodities he hasn’t worked with, and he’s consulted to more than 100 of Canada's leading junior and major exploration/mining companies­–not to mention governments on five continents.
As for Peter, I think we’ve really added someone special to the team here.
As well as becoming a non-executive director for Kavango, Peter is the Chairman of Moxico Resources; the majority owner and operator of the Mimbula Copper Project in Zambia.
Mimbula is a producing operation, and Peter’s wealth of commercial experience in our sector will be invaluable as our own projects move forward.
His experience doesn’t stop there, either. As an experienced lawyer, he’s acted as General Counsel for KPMG and Reunion Mining PLC. He also served as Director and Managing Director of ZincOx Resources PLC.
Peter has been raising capital since the ‘90s and has been involved in successful projects including the development of a gold mine in Zambia, a copper mine in Zimbabwe, and the Skorpion zinc mine in Namibia (prior to its takeover by Anglo-American).
Peter’s experience is clear, and I believe his—alongside Jeremy’s—addition to the board puts us in a very strong position going into 2023.
Ready to go again 
With such positive developments on a corporate level, we’re hoping to take equally significant strides forward across our projects on the ground this year.
Our share price is lower than I would like it to be right now, and I don’t believe it’s a true reflection of where we are as a company. With the progress we are making, I expect the market to follow suit as conditions improve and, hopefully, we have demonstrable success in the field.
Drilling will start again this week at the KCB, and we’ll be testing what stands to be a key development.
Using CSAMT technology, we believe we’ve identified a horizon of the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan.
If we can confirm this, we’ll be the first company to have done so at depth from the surface without drilling first. If the current drill test is successful, we believe we have a truly ground-breaking technology for the KCB exploration sector.
If we don’t hit that crucial D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact this time, it won’t mean failure for the technology, but rather that the crucial horizon is deeper than we would need to be economically viable.
What fills us with hope is that the latest lines of CSAMT we ran appear to show rock layers (the “stratigraphy”) down to about 4km depth. One of these layers is highly likely to represent the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact, but, as always, the question in metal exploration is how deep is it?
The only way to find out is to drill.
So, right now, we need to wait and see what happens with Hole KCBRC006…
It’s work like this that excites me the most–even during difficult market periods such as those we’ve all recently experienced.
I look forward now to what the New Year will bring and hope to be able to update you before too long on the steps we are taking to deliver metal onto our books in 2023.

The importance of anticlines and synclines and how CSAMT could be a KCB game-changer

I want to introduce you to two words you may not have comes across before…
Anticlines and synclines.
These may be unfamiliar, but they could also be very significant for the work we’re doing in the Kalahari Copper Belt.
In the simplest terms, an anticline refers to a geological structure beneath the ground that arches up.
Imagine a hill underground.
Conversely, a syncline refers to a structure that arches down.
So, imagine a valley.
You can see an example of what they both look like in the diagram below, courtesy of Advancing Earth and Space Science:

SOURCE: https://blogs.agu.org/thefield/2017/06/28/valleys-ridges-understanding-geologic-structures-central-virginia-pt-1/

But why are these two structures so important?
Well, imagine if you were drilling into the ground hoping to find the top of an underground hill - or an anticline…
But when you drilled into that ground, instead of a hill (an anticline), you encountered a valley (a syncline) instead.
You’d miss the top of the hill.
And because the valley potentially dips much deeper down, you’d run the risk of missing its bottom—the syncline—too.
You could well think your economic drill targets were not there.
Or worse, have spent a lot of money proving they were out of range.
In very simple terms, this is effectively the situation we believe some explorers have found themselves in when searching for the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact zone that controls mineralisation in the KCB.

A change of thinking

Up until now the consensus thinking—and frustratingly, that included our own—has been that the most prospective ground for mineralisation in the KCB typically occurs where the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact sits under or around anticlines and some form of other rock structure has “cross cut” this horizon.
However, we believe the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact around synclines could also be prospective, so long as another cross-cutting structure is present.
To date, we are not aware that anyone has successfully managed to test this theory, so why has our thinking changed?
Fundamentally, because of the Controlled Source Audio Magnetotelluric, or “CSAMT”, technology I’ve regularly mentioned.
We’re the first company to use CSAMT in the way that we are to explore the KCB. And after 10 months of refining and calibrating our collection, processing, and analysis of data, we’ve shown we can produce sharply defined visual slices of resistive contacts down to 4km in the region.
Now, following our most recent KCB update, we’ve gone some way to proving that this same CSAMT technology can identify the location and depth of prospective D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact on both anticlines and synclines without drilling.
Work to confirm this is underway, with a KCB-experienced local geological contractor re-logging and analysing drill core and rock chip samples from recent drilling and a hole planned post the Christmas break.
But if we are successful, then it could be very significant.
After all, Airborne Electromagnetic surveying is usually only effective down to around 300m. So, with the D’Kar being up to 1,500m thick in places, drilling anything but the very shallowest targets has been highly difficult in the past.
We could be on the verge of changing this.
I’ve said before on many presentations, I believe CSAMT technology will be a game-changer for Kavango, and for exploration generally in the KCB. With the recent data we’ve been receiving, I believe it even more.
Of course, there’s more to do to confirm the CSAMT…
And to confirm just how big a breakthrough we might be on the verge of at the KCB…
But there are three very strong clues, perhaps I might even say points of confirmation, that our CSAMT imaging is right

Very positive signs that CSAMT is working 

First, there’s the fact that CSAMT identified the structures around Sandfire’s Kronos occurrence, which is relatively shallow.
This gives us a firm data point we can compare from the images to reality.
Second, our CSAMT data suggested that we would hit what’s known as a “Breccia Zone” at around 350m in our drill hole KCBRC005.
We did.
“Brecciation” is a process that sees rocks beneath the ground become fragmented and broken up.
Hitting the Breccia Zone where we did on KCBRC005 is a potentially encouraging sign because this can be the type of cross-cutting structure that might have allowed liquids to flow through the region and copper/silver deposits to be collected at the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact.
That is not to say we’ve yet identified a mineralising system in PL082, but this smaller Breccia Zone at 350m gives us another data point that appears to confirm CSAMT surveys can identify the right sort of structures where mineralisation can occur.  
And, incidentally, this Breccia Zone could ONLY be identified by CSAMT–there were no surface expressions of its existence.
Thirdly, and this might be most important, our CSAMT surveys over PL082 appear to have identified a syncline on our property that graduates to becoming an anticline on Sandfire’s ground, where the Kronos occurrence occurs.
This could be a huge help in future targeting and, all in all, gives us confidence that we could be onto something big at the KCB.

See the syncline for yourself

All this talk of anticlines and synclines and brecciation…
I realise it gets very technical. But hopefully you can see the significance yourself in this image:

You can see the syncline shape there on our ground in the centre (the “valley”) and the anticline (dome) on Sandfire’s ground to the right, where CSAMT identified the structure around Sandfire’s Kronos occurrence.


It’s all very positive.
The catch?
Though the CSAMT tells us more about what’s beneath the ground than we’ve ever known before, it does not tell us the individual rock units.
In other words, we still must confirm where the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact exits and what—if any—mineralisation has occurred. To do that, we need to continue drilling, which we are doing.
This is made difficult by the fact we’re dealing with brecciation, which creates gaps in the earth that the water we use to cool our drills disappears down.
It’s not helpful, but it’s all part of getting closer to where we want to get to.
In an ideal scenario, our drilling will confirm our suspicions, prove that the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact also occurs under and around a syncline, and, we hope, evidence of a mineralising system.
Of course, that last point would be incredible.
But what we could find is that the contact is deeper than is economically viable.
This would still be positive as it will act as further technical support for our CSAMT modelling. We could then turn our attention to the more southern part of our license, where we believe the syncline arches closer to the surface (based on the apparent dip of the area’s geology).
Of course, finding metal in the ground is the ultimate goal, but this is all highly encouraging, which is why I wanted to go into this detail with you today.
For shareholders of Kavango, I hope this will prove to be very positive—not just for what’s going on at the KCB, but the way it endorses our technology and approach to exploration.
I’ll be sharing much more on this over the coming weeks into the New Year, but if you have any questions in the meantime, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Otherwise, I hope you’re all enjoying the holiday period, and I hope this news—and all this talk of anticlines and synclines—brings you some festive joy. It certainly has for me.

COO Brett Grist answers your KCB questions…

I’ve had some great emails in from readers recently…
And I must say thanks to those who’ve been in touch. It’s reassuring to have readers so engaged in what we’re doing.
Indeed, last week, I asked for your questions about the current drilling campaign in the Kalahari Copper Belt, which is focused on our PL082 licence.
We’ve been collating responses ever since.
As I always point out, here at Kavango, we want to make sure that investors know they can contact us with any questions they do have, wherever they have them.
You can always get in touch at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and we’ll always respond as soon as we can.
But I invited specific questions on this occasion because our COO, Brett Grist has just been over to Botswana to see how things are progressing at the KCB.
Now he’s back, I passed the questions over to him and you can find his answers here:
Where has this drilling campaign focused within PL082?
The majority of drilling is presently being aimed at the Northern Zone within PL082.
This work integrates with the extensive Controlled Source Audio Magnetotelluric (“CSAMT”) surveying carried out on the licence, with each hole helping to upgrade our interpretation of data from this cutting-edge tool allowing us to see large-scale geological structures.
When do you expect to have results from the drilling that’s been done so far? 
We plan to announce the results of the drilling when the overall campaign has completed.
The program has been slower than we would have liked, partly due to some difficult ground conditions, which is one of the reasons why I recently visited Botswana again–I like to see things first-hand. The drilling is now progressing well once again, and we are on our sixth hole.
What has Kavango learned about the KCB from this current drill campaign that it can take into future campaigns? 
We are exploring largely blind targets. As a result, every hole we drill has a transformative effect on our knowledge.
As you’d imagine, against this backdrop, the potential validation of CSAMT by the drilling could be a real game changer in this environment if it delivers in the way we hope.
What are your next steps in regards to this current drill campaign? 
The current hole will suspend shortly for Christmas, and then restart around 10 January.
As each hole progresses, we carry out geological logging and gather magnetic susceptibility data. This is then modelled alongside our CSAMT inversions, enabling us to plan holes in real time on a dynamic basis.
Indeed, while we have a long list of targets, this is the starting point. The individual holes (and licences) are moved up and down our priority list based on our latest understanding as it comes in.  
Our targets also extend into the other licences. While we have started on PL082, as it was the most advanced licence, I am also excited about the licences towards the Namibian border. We are working to get those to a drill optimised state, and have recently completed CSAMT over them.
What has been your biggest takeaway from this trip? 
I have been very impressed by the progress made by the team since I joined, in particular on data.
Exploration is data driven, and this needs to flow across the team in close to real-time. We are now able to see core logs and photography within hours of the core being drilled. This helps the team make fully informed decisions.
My thanks to Brett for taking the time to jot down his answers.
If his responses have inspired any more questions, please get in touch—we’re happy to try to answer any questions you have.
It’s a busy time here at Kavango, and things continue to progress at pace.
I wish you all a very Happy Christmas and I hope you found Brett’s answers useful.

Innovating in Botswana with CSAMT...

This week, I want to talk in a bit more detail about Kavango’s innovative use of Controlled-Source Audio Magnetotellurics, or CSAMT.
We’ve recently released several announcements covering our use of the technology on licence PL082 in the Kalahari Copper Belt. However, these announcements are fairly jargon heavy so I wanted to provide some additional context in today’s newsletter. What we’re developing does look like it is truly ground-breaking and has already attracted some significant external interest.
As far as I’m aware, no one else has ever deployed CSAMT in the way we are in Botswana.
If our approach is as successful as our early progress suggests, it could be an exploration game-changer not just for the KCB, but for Botswana as a whole.
Let me explain…
In the world of oil & gas exploration, there’s a powerful surveying technique known as 3D seismic. It effectively works by visually mapping the structures underlying a target area so oil exploration firms can identify potential trap zones into which oil could have accumulated.
The tech has led to many of the world’s largest hydrocarbon discoveries. But it’s also very expensive. So expensive, in fact, that using it to an adequate equivalent scale in the search for metal mineralisation puts it beyond the budgets of our sector.
With CSAMT, however, we are well on our way to pioneering a new technique that can generate targets almost as effectively as 3D Seismic in the KCB, but at a fraction of the cost.
It “slices” through the earth to pinpoint individual rock layers that could be areas of alteration and mineralisation.
More specifically, sensors are laid out on the ground to pick up two key data points from natural electro-magnetic signals generated beneath the ground:

  1. Frequency: which tells us the depth a signal is being generated from
  2. Resistivity: which tells us what could be in the rock making the response

These EM signals are fed into a computer so they can be ranked by frequencies, with resistivities of particular ranges grouped into separate “domains”.
This then creates a geological map like the below that “sketches” out potential rock layers to a particular depth, as you can see in the image below taken from a CSAMT line we ran over the Great Red Spot in the Kalahari Suture Zone:

While these “vertical slices” can’t tell us what kinds of rock each layer contains, they can show us their shape and position.
By comparing the CSAMT “sketch” with other data sets (such as the data taken from a drillhole), we can look for similarities and extrapolate what rocks might be present at different depths.
Not just that, but we can use CSAMT data to look for areas that might be altered or broken up by geological events such as intrusions. Essentially, what we are looking for are the right sort of areas that could have host mineralising events and from this we can use CSAMT to delineate priority targets for drilling.

Optimising for the KCB

Now, like any exploration technology, CSAMT must be properly calibrated to its environment.
After all, whether it’s terrain, sub-surface bodies, temperature, climate, or topography, there are so many factors that will impact its effectiveness. In other words, you can’t just turn up on the day and expect CSAMT to magically work.
This is where Kavango has an edge.
Over the last 12 months, our geophysical experts Jeremy Brett and Hillary Gumbo have optimised how we collectprocess, and analyse CSAMT data for the KCB. As we announced last week, this has enabled us to create high definition vertical slices down to an impressive 4,000m.
We’re now testing the accuracy of this imaging in our current drilling programme. While our top priority is to find mineralisation, if we can demonstrate the CSAMT works as we believe it does then this will be a big win for Kavango.
This allows us to look at what our CSAMT lines highlight about different rock layers and see if it matches up with what the core we’re taking from the ground. And perhaps the most telling of all these will be CSAMT Line 4A.
You see, our neighbour Sandfire Resources has allowed us to extend this line beyond PL082’s boundary and on to ground where its Kronos copper deposit is hosted in a “D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact zone”.
These areas where the “D’Kar” and “Ngwano Pan” rock layers meet represent the primary control of copper/silver mineralisation for the entirety of the KCB.
So, if we can successfully use Line 4A to identify the extension of this contact zone on to our own licence area then, as with 3D seismic, we effectively find ourselves with a way of mapping the location of proven mineralisation trap zones without drilling. 
That could be crucial for exploration across our wider KCB licence package, and we’ve already deployed CSAMT equipment to our Mamumo and PL036/PL037 licences. But it also could be a huge development for the wider KCB and any area of Botswana covered by thick Kalahari sands–roughly 70% of the nation.
The opportunity for partnerships is tantalising.
But first, we need to prove CSAMT’s efficacy. With the final interpretations being delivered and drilling well underway, that moment is likely to arrive sooner rather than later.
Next step is to finish interpretation of the Line 4A data and share it with Sandfire. Once everyone is in agreement, we will be able to publish the results in an RNS. We will then all need to wait and see what the drill core has to tell us.

While drilling continues at the KCB, meetings continue in London

Before I give you a quick update on how things are progressing on and off the field - and they’re progressing nicely - I wanted to direct you to a presentation I’ve been working with a lot over the last week.

In case you’ve not seen it, you can download it here.

It’s our Q4 corporate presentation and gives what I hope is a good overview of our projects and where they stand right now.

In there, you’ll find detailed assessments of where we’re at with the KCB, the KSZ, and Ditau.

I was busy last week in London at the 121 Mining Investment conference, talking to various people about our plans, using these slides.

The 121 Mining Investment event is a valuable one as it puts CEOs together with other executives and investors for a series of half hour one-to-one meetings.

The event came at a good time, with Kavango having just completed its strategic fund raise and just published the new prospectus (as I discussed with you in our last issue of Boots on the Ground.

I had a lot of positive conversations on our progress and a number of interesting new contacts.

You can’t beat getting to spend face-to-face time with investors. It really helps to get a true understanding of where people are and how people feel about what’s happening in the market. My overriding sense at the moment is there is a lot of genuine appetite for deals in the exploration space.

Investor appetite at previous events had tended to focus on much more developed projects, but this time there was a notable positive shift in sentiment towards companies like ours. With metal prices continuing to remain strong, this is not at all surprising, but it does offer encouraging light at the end of the tunnel for our sector that has struggled so much this year.

First up, here you can see one of the drilling rigs…

As you can imagine, this is an expensive bit of kit - and a crucial one - which is why, at the end of each drilling shift, our drill partners Mindea carry out regular maintenance on the rig to make sure everything is working and that any potential problems can be prevented.

Next, you can see here the core barrels that go into the ground…

Though it looks little more than scaffolding, these are obviously essential to the drilling process.

As they are drilled into the ground, the rock sample is collected inside and that provides us with what we call the core sample.

We use a process known as diamond drilling because industrial diamonds are used at the head of the rotating drill bit to. This method preserves whole sample of core that offer us an exact view of the rock layers beneath the ground.

You can watch a quick video that breaks down the difference between regular RC drilling and Diamond Core drilling here.

Indeed, once the drilling is done and a tube is removed from the ground, the core itself is removed from the tube and cut into roughly 1m long samples.

Here you can see the team completing a first visual inspection of the samples:

At this point our geologists are looking for evidence of mineralisation and what’s called ‘quartz veining’. This is a key aspect of the copper/silver mineralisation in the KCB.

Our team also performs tests for magnetic susceptibility and electrical conductance.

The aim here is to understand what’s in the ground and how it ties up with our surveys and models.

That’s what we’re doing right now at the KCB…


And it’s this sort of determination to learn as much about the potential of our licence areas as we can that is also helping us to achieve technical breakthroughs like the one we revealed on Friday morning.

As reported here, our latest line of Controlled-Source Audio Magnetotelluric, or “CSAMT”, surveying mapped KCB licence PL082’s geology down to a depth of 4,000m at a high quality.

That’s unprecedented, and far exceeded our expectations. Previously, the furthest our CSAMT had mapped to was around 1,000m.

At first, this might look like a development significant only to those with fairly advanced geological knowledge. I appreciate this was a technical announcement, but I believe it should be noted by all of our readers.

After all, 70% of Botswana is covered by Kalahari sand.  This has been difficult to penetrate over the years. As a result, Botswana has been left heavily underexplored.

The more we prove the efficacy of CSAMT in overcoming these geological barriers and the more skilled we get at applying it…

The greater an advantage I believe we have when it comes to identifying mineral wealth in Botswana that was inaccessible to our predecessors.

That goes not just for our existing project areas, but also in other project areas we might consider in the future.

Success, of course, isn’t guaranteed. But the bottom line is, the recent corporate developments we’ve made alongside the progress we’re making with drilling and CSAMT mean it’s an exciting time for Kavango.

Now the prospectus process has been successful completed, I look forward to continuing to update investors over the coming weeks and months.


Regulatory work isn’t easy, but it’s a key part of progress

This past week, as well as drilling down into the ground at the KCB, we’ve been drilling down into the company too.
Both present their own challenges…
But both help our progress enormously.
Indeed, as our drill campaign continues apace, and we continue to progress our projects at the KSZ and Ditau, we’ve been engaged in a serious undertaking to provide the FCA with a full company prospectus.
It’s been a lot of work for our management team, but I think will prove to be worth it.
The FCA, as you no doubt know, is the Financial Conduct Authority.
As part of their regulatory oversight, when a company like ours on the Standard List raises funds, the FCA requires us to produce and submit a detailed prospectus that outlines how the company has developed so far and how funds will be used in the future.
We have to provide evidence on how we plan to achieve our strategic goals, and - importantly – the basis on which we’ve made our future predictions (or “forward looking statements”).
Granted, talking about the FCA hardly sounds like an exciting or stimulating subject for an email like this...
But the truth is, compiling a detailed report of this nature provides several encouraging benefits, as I’ll explain.
Of course, those familiar with how the markets work might be aware that most companies in the UK exploration space, who are listed on AIM, do not have to produce a prospectus like this. AIM is a market to which these rules do not apply, but we are on the Standard List of the main LSE – a more prestigious venue for a company like ours to trade.
One of the main benefits of spending so much time on preparing a prospectus is that it has given us the chance to complete a comprehensive review of the entire company. We've been able to see what we’ve done well and also see where we might be able to do things differently in future.
That kind of self-awareness and insight could prove to be invaluable as we move forward.
There’s also the fact that the process of approving the prospectus means two separate individuals from the FCA are required to go through everything themselves with a fine-toothed comb and ask questions about anything that sticks out as odd or needs better explaining.
Though some might see this as unwelcome scrutiny, I encourage it wholeheartedly.
It helps confirm we’re doing things right from a regulatory perspective. This makes our business stronger and more robust.
More so, the regulator is particularly concerned with our forward-looking statements.
This is key.


Pushing forward

This isn’t just about checking what’s gone before…
It’s about ensuring, at least from a regulatory perspective, that we have planned strategically and financially in a way that makes sense…that the sums add up.
It’s further reassurance for Kavango, but also for investors and the market as a whole.
Indeed, that’s another knock-on benefit of compiling such a detailed review and having it approved by the FCA… it means we have more compelling evidence for future investors that what we’re doing is investible. They’ll be able to consult this document and use it to support their investment case.
Yes - it’s been a lot of work, and not the exciting work of drilling and getting our hands in the Botswanan soil…
And yes, many similar companies listed on AIM avoid the need to do this altogether...
But the whole process, though detailed and demanding, has left me feeling even more positive about what we’re doing here at Kavango.
It fills me with greater confidence. And I hope, now that the process is complete and the prospectus is published on our website, it will give a boon to investors too.
The takeaway is simple…
Both below the ground and behind the scenes, our work is progressing with clear focus and steely determination.
Now that the prospectus is published, we can complete various elements of our work programmes and I look forward to bringing you more news in the near future.

Financing is the first step; now we’re ready to stride forward

If there’s copper in the ground at the KCB, we’ve given ourselves the very best chance of finding it.
That’s what I said in my last edition of Boots on the Ground, and it’s what I’ve been telling everyone I speak to.
Without doubt, the strategic financing we recently secured takes us a considerable step towards realising what the KCB has to offer.
But it is only a step.
And I’m not so naïve to think it will be all plain sailing from here.
So far though, as our drill campaign progresses well in Botswana, things are looking good.

Drills in the ground at the KCB


On licence PL082, drilling so far has corresponded to what our Controlled-Source Audio-frequency Magnetotellurics (or CSAMT) surveys are showing us. That’s a good sign. If we are able to map the D’Kar/Ngwako Pan contact from surface, this will give us a huge exploration edge in future.
Remember, this is the key contact point that controls the KCB’s copper/silver deposits. Being able to identify where these formational contacts lie within our licences will allow us to improve our drill targeting immensely.
Of course, there is a lot of focus on in the KCB right now. With the drill campaign in full swing, we’re keen to see what the ground turns up.
But as I’ve been briefing elsewhere, the truth is KCB is only part of the puzzle when it comes to Kavango.
This is why, despite the still uncertain market conditions, I’m still quietly confident about what we’re doing.


A cautious time calls for cautious optimism

I understand investors are weary, edgy even.
And I know reading this, you might yourself be suspicious of the market.
I think about that a lot.
It’s why not long ago, in this very newsletter, I pointed out my own belief in focusing on fundamentals. I think that’s important.
It’s how I look at what we’re doing here at Kavango. Fundamentally, I believe we have a good approach to exploration in Botswana.
It has taken time to get to this point, and there is still reason to be cautious, and indeed, patient.
But when I look at the next steps we’re preparing to take, it reminds me that we are moving in the right direction all the time.
Take a look at this slide from a presentation I’ve been sharing with investors and various financial media.

What you’ll see immediately is that our work at KCB is only one of our project areas.
It’s easy to lose sight of this.
The fact is we have opportunities across three different projects.
Yes, there is the campaign underway at KCB, and the next steps there are to complete the current drilling, assess the situation, and select the final drilling targets accordingly.
Thanks to the financing we’ve attracted, we are well positioned to get that all done.
But we have the KSZ too.
There we’re getting ready to drill the “B” conductors, which demonstrate high levels of conductivity and very promising Norilsk-style potential based on the data we’ve already collected.
Indeed, we’ll be carrying out TDEM and CSAMT surveys across the project to get all the insight we can into what the ground might have in store for us.
And on top of the KSZ, you can see we have Ditau too.
There we have CSAMT and gravity surveys, which incur a lower cost than drilling, planned across the 12 ring structure targets we’ve identified.
And we’re looking to drill there too in 2023, particular on our i10 Target where petrological studies have already confirmed an IOCG system.
While there’s so much focus on the KCB, it’s easy for the market and the media to forget about what’s going on at KSZ and Ditau.
I understand. This is how exploration works. Focus appears to move from one project to another as new information surfaces.
But as CEO, I’ve always got one eye on each project, and seeing it all laid out like this, the opportunities we’ve created, it helps to remind me of the sheer scale of what we’re doing here at Kavango. And it’s the reason why, even in times like this, I might still seem bullish.
That said, despite my confidence, like I say, I know there will be challenges ahead and we will need to work as a team to overcome them.
The good news is, we have that team here at Kavango. I see it day in day out and it’s a joy to watch everyone pushing in the same direction.
Exploration is not an exact science. The ground reveals new surprises all the time, some good, some bad, and you must assess sensibly, but quickly.
The drilling at the KCB so far suggests our survey work has been conducted well. I hope things continue like that, but we’ll be ready for whatever the ground throws up.
Still, I know my confidence in what we’re doing is not the only thing that will reassure current investors or attract new ones. I know there will be specific issues people are interested in knowing themselves.
This is why, before I sign off for this issue of Boots on the Ground, I want to invite you, dear reader, once again to respond to this very email with any questions about what’s happening at the KCB, or at the KSZ and Ditau.
I’ll collate your questions together and look to do a mailbag issue next time around.
You can email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Otherwise, the future is looking bright for Kavango right now.
Our plans are progressing, drills are in the ground, and we’re learning more about our projects all the time.
In a time of great uncertainty, I hope that gives investors some small reassurance and cause for cautious optimism.



A significant ray of sunlight in an undeniably challenging market

Let’s not sugar-coat it…
Being an explorer in these current market conditions is tough.
Seeking strategic investment is even tougher.
Most investors are on the defensive. People are reigning things in, cutting back, looking to lay-low until greater confidence returns.
And it’s been like that for a while now.
I understand it’s one of the reasons some people have been skeptical about what we’re doing here at Kavango, about my plans for the company.
Investors are weary. I get that.
Even though the opportunities we’re exploring across our three main projects look good on paper (and on the ground), the fact the wider market is so fragile worries people.
I’ve never ignored this. I knew it only too well.
I still do.
But from the moment I became CEO of Kavango, I’ve been confident in what we’re doing as a company.
The KSZ…the KCB…Ditau… make no mistake: these are highly promising exploration opportunities.
It’s why, for the last year at least, I’ve been talking to as many people as possible about what we’re doing. I’ve tried to be open, transparent, and above all...realistic.
I think that’s what investors want.
And I believe it’s the reason why I’m able to write to you today to celebrate the fact that we last week raised £3.5 million to help fund our continuing exploration.
Frankly, I believe it could be enough to see us through to discovery.
Of course, I’m not saying discovery is guaranteed. That’s impossible to predict, even with the extensive work we’re doing.
But I believe that if the metal is there in the ground at any of our projects…
We stand a very good chance of finding it.
And now I believe we have the financing necessary to do so.
Perhaps more important, though, is the fact that the vast majority of this raise comes from two key strategic investors.
Right now, I can’t share the details of one of those investors, simply because the deal is waiting to complete. Once the TR-1 is done in mid-November, I’ll be the first to update you.
But as we announced via RNS last week, our deal with Arigo Investments Africa is now complete, and we couldn’t be happier to have the team on board.
Being based in Southern Africa, Arigo's experience and contacts will be a great support to us.
Their investment in us is reassuring too. Presented with all we’ve done and all that we plan to do, Arigo’s team can clearly see the opportunity for itself.
As I say, this is not a friendly market.
It’s a tough time to be raising…
And it makes me even prouder that a company like Arigo is confident enough to invest such a significant amount.
Of course, there is still a lot of work to be done. I understand that, and the whole team here at Kavango understands that too.
But our excitement in these opportunities…in what’s happening at KSZ…at the KCB…and at Ditau… only continues to grow.
If you’ve got questions about any of our projects, remember you can always reply to this email and ask me, and I’ll look to cover any of the topics in a future edition of Boots on the Ground.
Indeed, either way, I’ll keep you updated on what’s happening, and as more data comes to light, what our next steps will be.
But right now, in a market that for many is extremely challenging, I think it’s important to take a moment to reflect on what our latest fundraise means.
It’s a significant vote of confidence in what we’re doing here at Kavango and, we believe, gives us clear runway until the end of 2023. With such a strong outlook for base metals, it is surely a matter of time before the mining and exploration sector rallies.
With all the operational progress we have made over the course of 2022, and now that we have emphatically addressed any questions over financing, it is my firm belief that Kavango will be one of the leaders when the market recovers.

How we’re embracing new technology to advance our work across Botswana

We’re not the first company to look at the Kalahari Suture Zone...
We’re not even the first company to go prospecting for copper further north either…
But there is no doubt…
At both the KSZ and the Kalahari Copper Belt, we have been at the cutting edge when it comes to using technologies in our exploration efforts.
I’m extremely proud of that.
Above all, I’m proud of the team on the ground in Botswana and here in the UK for engaging with new technology in such a committed way.
I’m convinced it’s thanks to our use of the latest technology that we could be about to make a serious breakthrough.
In particular, the deployment of magnetotellurics has been extremely useful at both projects, with the latest imagery from the KCB providing us with enough certainty about our geological models to say that further drilling is definitely warranted.
Partly, this is because the resolution on the latest set of magnetotellurics has been exceptional, with superb visibility down to depths of four kilometres.
Frankly, that far exceeded our expectations.
But more broadly, it’s because the imagery appears to show high contrast resistivity sections deep beneath the Kalahari Desert that clearly indicate areas of major folding and faulting.
That resistivity is exactly what the magnetotellurics – or, to give it its even fancier scientific name: the controlled-source audio-frequency magnetotelluric (CSAMT) method – are designed to find.

Measuring frequencies

In more understandable terms, magnetotellurics measure fluctuations in natural electric and magnetic fields over a broad range of frequencies.
These fluctuations are caused by ionosphere related solar activity in the low frequency range, and by world-wide thunderstorm activity at higher frequencies.
It’s fascinating when you start to learn more about it.
The “controlled source” in CSAMT is a specialised transmitter, which makes signals stronger and more coherent than measurement using the associated method known simply as the audio-magnetotelluric method, or AMT.
But what the CSAMT technology is showing us in the Kalahari Copper Belt isn’t just of academic interest.
The data that’s coming back could prove highly commercial too.
What the imagery seems to show is a steeply dipping geological structure or deformation zone which goes down to a depth of four kilometres.
If that’s so, it would be a highly encouraging result.
Such structures are thought to serve as pathways for fluid flow and mineral mobilisation.
Or in other words….
We may well be looking at a key component of a mineralising system.
And in addition, the deformation zone highlighted by the CSAMT also coincides both with a copper anomaly we’ve already identified in the Northern Zone of the Kalahari Copper Belt, and with a conductor we’ve identified using airborne electromagnetic surveys.
So far and it’s all so good.
The next tick in the box will be confirmation of our interpretation of the underground contact between the Nwgako Pan sediments and the shallower D’Kar lithologies.
This contact zone is recognised as a crucial control for copper and silver mineralisation in the Kalahari Copper Belt.
If drilling can confirm what the CSAMT data seems to be indicating…
The overall result will be transformational for our understanding of the Northern Zone.

We continue to move forward

As you know, drilling is already underway elsewhere on the PL082/2018 licence, targeting a different set of CSAMT data that was previously generated.
The initial focus here was justified by the presence at surface of the highest soil copper values yet recorded on the licence, and we have high hopes for this drill hole too.
But what the CSAMT data is now beginning to emphasise is that the area is likely to be rich in targets of real significance, and ones that are crying out to be tested.
So, once this first hole – KCBRC001 – is complete, we will move on deeper into this drill campaign, confident that all the data shows we’re really onto something.
Quite what that is, remains to be seen. But the time has now come where we test our geophysics against physical geology…
And I am very much looking forward to what we find.

Drilling the KCB with flexibility in mind

We’ve now mobilised our maiden drilling programme in the Kalahari Copper Belt, where our goal is to make one or more economic copper discoveries.

Our first pass will include six holes for around 1,250 metres of drilling, focusing on the Northern and Central anomalies we’ve identified on licence PL082/2018.

The work marks the first phase of up to 37,600 metres of planned drilling across 188 drill collar locations we’ve identified on four of our 12 KCB licences.

We now aim to move along at a fairly rapidly clip, thanks in part to the variable capabilities of the drill rig deployed by our contractors Mindea.

You see, Mindea is using a multi-purpose to drill PL082. This is capable of both reverse circulation and diamond drilling, allowing for great flexibility.

Now, experienced mining hands will know there are certain advantages and disadvantages to each of these drilling styles. Much of this comes down to geological setting.

At PL082, the Kalahari sands overlying our target rocks are quite thin. That means we can get down to where we want to be pretty quickly.

It’s what we do when we get there that’s really crucial.

With diamond drilling, you get a fully intact cylindrical core of rock that can provide a much higher quality of analysis once it’s split and sent to the lab for analysis. Most exploration companies would, on the whole, favour this if neither money nor time were an object and ground conditions allowed.

With reverse circulation drilling, the rock that’s drilled is also crushed and comes to the surface in the form of chips. It’s then batched up by intervals and sent for analysis in bags or boxes. Because there’s no need to keep the core intact, it’s much faster than diamond drilling and more cost effective too.

One factor in particular that also plays a part, especially in an environment like the Kalahari, is water. You need water for diamond drilling, but not so much for RC drilling.

A hybrid approach

The hard numbers tell the real story, though. It can take up to a month to drill a single 800 metre diamond drill hole, which is roughly the same amount of time it might take to drill eight to twelve 200 metre RC holes.

Now, the KCB targets we’re currently working on are not that deep. This means we can cover a lot of ground in a short period of time and get a fast but real feel for the rock types if we use RC.

This diagram shows the location of the Northern and Central zones we are targeting with our current drilling campaign


Nonetheless, if ground conditions mean we can’t use RC for whatever reason, or if we decide to go deeper into the KCB than originally envisioned, Mindea’s multi-purpose rig gives us the capability to switch to diamond drilling without any fuss.

That flexibility with the rig will make us very nimble when it comes to making day-to-day decisions about how and where to drill. Brett, our COO, has flown to Botswana for this campaign and has been joined their by Kavango’s co-founder Hillary Gumbo. Together with Fred and the team, we have everyone on sight to maximise our chances of success.

Ultimately, at this early stage of the campaign we want as much physical data as we can gather for minimal cost, so most of the work will likely be RC. But where a more complex understanding of structure is required, we can quickly switch over to diamond.

This means it’s quite possible that some of the holes we drill will be hybrid; the upper levels will be drilled out using RC, with the lower levels pulling out diamond core.

It’s a useful option to have, and one that will make the upcoming results from KCB just that bit more critical to our search for large, economic deposits.

Braving the bigger picture: an investor's eternal challenge

Whether you’re deeply concerned with what’s happening in the UK economy right now…

Or if perhaps you’re a bit more relaxed, having seen such moves play out before...

With the sheer media focus on what’s happening, it’s impossible to not have at least some reservations about the future.

How will Mr Market take it all?

Well, he’ll take it in his stride. He always does. Highs and lows. Inflation and deflation. High taxes and low taxes. Mr Market continues his merry way regardless.

That’s not to minimise the situation. Or to overlook the fact that when the market moves against you (sometimes despite making the right call), it can be utterly frustrating, demoralising, and financially troubling.


It’s at times like this, when there is such a high level of hysteria around the markets, that I think it’s more important than ever for investors—and I count myself in that number—to remember the fundamentals, to see the bigger picture, the reason they invest in the first place.

Take what we’re doing with Kavango.

We’re a business focused on exploration in Botswana.

We hope to find a variety of valuable resources in the ground, resources that are fundamental not just to the UK economy, but the global economy.

Yes, seeing the markets worried… seeing the pound crash… seeing the media whip up a panic…these things impact us as a company. And it’s necessary for us to figure out ways to overcome the short-term fluctuations. Thankfully we’re well positioned and have a strong plan, which we’ve worked hard to put into action.

But still, there is a tendency for this noise to distract from the bigger picture.

A wave is building

Where seeing the bigger picture is concerned, let me give you an example of what I mean.

Just this week I was listening to a program on Radio 4 talking about the need for rare earth metals.

Radio 4.

It’s not quite Radio 1, or the One Show, but it doesn’t get much more mainstream than that.

The fact this is being discussed on such platforms tells us something.

And this is on the back of an increasing number of articles, comment pieces and features across the financial media exploring how important rare earths are to the future of the planet.

In fact, you may have seen…

The now Chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, before getting his hands on the purse itself, launched, as Business Secretary, an entire policy to support UK companies in the exploration for rare earths.

There is a wave building here.

The demand for copper, for nickel, for all manner of rare earth metals is growing. It’s becoming known. It’s becoming unavoidable.

Green energy. British industry. Electric Vehicles. These are issues that all rely, ultimately, on companies like us doing what we do.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not just Kavango who I think will benefit from this. Others will too.

But it’s important, I think, to remember these issues… how we source energy… how a country grows its economy… how we power the cars we drive… these are truly fundamental. They are not going away.

When I see hysteria plastered across the front pages...

When I see investors panicked...

When I see Mr Market taking a hit…

I remind myself that as an investor--and indeed, as the CEO of a company like Kavango--my focus should always be on the bigger picture, on the fundamentals.

It’s not easy. It’s the eternal challenge for any investor, for any CEO... to see past the noise, to continue according to plan when it seems everyone else is throwing away plans left, right and centre.

But we steel ourselves regardless.

We remind ourselves of why we invest, why we believe in what we’re doing… and the answer so often reminds us that yes, we are on the right path, and we’re heading in the right direction.

A timely recap on our projects across Botswana

I think one of our key strengths has always been the high quality of the exploration projects we have in our portfolio.

It’s not over-egging the pudding to say that we have four potentially company-making projects spread across our extensive Botswana portfolio.

On the KSZ alone, there’s the potential for a Norilsk lookalike target at depths of five or six hundred metres, while deeper down in the Great Red Spot the target bears up to significant comparison with Olympic Dam.

It’s rare to find a company with two such high quality targets in the same portfolio, let alone on the same licence.

And of course, where we’re concerned here at Kavango…

It doesn’t stop there!

There’s also the huge upside available from our Kalahari Copper Belt projects, and the intriguing potential at Ditau, which may yet turn us - and Botswana - into a major player in rare earths and a meaningful producer of gold too.

With such a broad range of properties and potential, you might wonder how we keep all the balls in the air at the same time.

It’s hard work, but we’ve been able to move forward with all our projects in recent months, and more to the point, we’ve got plenty more activity lined-up for the rest of the year and into 2023.

Indeed, in this instalment of Boots on the Ground, I want to recap and review where we are on some of these key projects.

Let’s start with the KCB

Of most immediate significance will be our plans on the Kalahari Copper Belt project.

Here, as you know, we recently identified a highly prospective drill target at Mamuno, with attractive grades showing up in soil sampling. The Mamuno licences are housed in our Kanye Resources vehicle, together with PL036, PL037 and a number of other licences. This land package is attracting a great deal of interest and I hope to be able to announce some news on this later on this year.

Meanwhile across the wider KCB, we’ve just taken our interest in the LVR joint venture to 90%, following the acquisition of a 65% stake that completed on 16 September.

That cues us up nicely for a maiden drilling campaign on the KCB, given that the LVR joint venture incorporates two prospecting licences covering a total area of 809 square kilometres.

In an area that’s known to be highly prospective for copper, that’s a sizeable chunk of ground to have, and although a firm date for drilling has yet to be set, one of the licences, PL082, isn’t far off being ready.

As it stands, PL082 has already yielded significant copper-in-soil anomalies, with XRF showing a peak value of 118 parts per million copper.

A more detailed understanding of grade at PL082 will have to await the investigations of the drill bit, but we do already know something of the extent of this prospect.

And it’s not small.

What we’ve called “the Central Zone” has a strike length of 27 kilometres, while the strike length at “the North Zone” rings in at eight kilometres. These are big strike lengths by anybody’s reckoning and give a clear indication of the kind of project scale we might be looking at down the line.

Separately, it’s possible that the PL083 licence, which is also encompassed in the LVR joint venture, has significant, previously unrecognised, prospective potential.

However, we don’t really know enough yet to say one way or the other, and our geophysics team is busy working up models to enable us to approach this ground in a meaningful way.

If we get it right, the payoffs might be huge. PL083 is largely unexplored ground, so anything that is there won’t have been missed by other companies, it just won’t have been looked for in the first place.

As ever with our work in Botswana, geophysics will be key. The huge advances that have been made in this area of geological science over the past few decades have enabled companies like ours to work up ground that would have been deemed unworkable in, say, the 1970s.

The Kalahari sands are deep – in places hundreds of metres deep – but these days, with the help of new tools, we can see deeper.

Which leads me to the KSZ

Certainly, that’s been true of the KSZ over the years, where our understanding of the geological structures there has been based around significantly more sophisticated exploration equipment and techniques than were available to our junior mining forebears of a generation or so ago.

In the case of KSZ, and particularly with reference to the Olympic Dam-style target that seems to lie at depth there, we’ve been able to apply a whole new technique – Controlled Source AudioMagnetoTellurics (CSAMT) – which wasn’t available to the original discoverers of Olympic Dam back in the 1970s.

The application of CSAMT has reaffirmed the insights gleaned from modelling done using older, tried and true techniques at the deeper depths of the KSZ, and only goes towards enhancing our confidence that we are thinking along the right lines.

In any case, it’s possible now that the immediate focus at the KSZ will switch back to the shallower areas that look prospective for nickel and copper.

I mentioned last time out that we recently appointed Tamesis to take the lead in our efforts to find a partner for the development of the KSZ, an announcement which came shortly after we issued Richard Hornsey’s ‘Proof of Concept’ report on the KSZ itself.

This report provided proof of the existence of nickel, copper, and platinum group metals-mineralising processes throughout the KSZ, in both the Karoo and Proterozoic Zones…

It highlighted previously unrecognised potential for mineralisation in the south of the project…

And it added other styles of potential mineralisation to the Norilsk-style that we had hitherto been working with. In particular, we are excited by the Platinum Group Element potential in the KSZ South.

This type of affirmation ought to carry a significant amount of weight with the potential partners that Tamesis will be lining up for us.

What type of deal eventually comes on to the table remains to be seen, but it’s long been recognised both inside the company and in the wider market that we’ve been punching above its weight at the KSZ.

Drilling to the depths we’re drilling, working up the models we’ve worked up, and having the aspirations we have – all are more appropriate to much larger mining companies.

Indeed, it’s fair to say that hardly any other junior exploration company has been able to achieve the kinds of things we’ve achieved over the past few years and, what’s more, most don’t even bother trying.

But we’ve always had big aspirations, which is why, if and when we do hit mineralisation at the KSZ, it’s likely to be big, and will require a partner to develop.

Whether we’ll end up needing a partner at Ditau is another matter entirely.

Not forgetting Ditau

Of course, Ditau is a completely different animal, both in terms of target and in terms of scale.

Until the most recent set of drill results we had primarily viewed Ditau as a rare earths opportunity, looking to capitalise on the increased demand for rare earths sourced anywhere other than China, and particularly from safe jurisdictions, like Botswana.

In late August, though, came the news that significant showings of gold had been uncovered in our latest round of drilling at Ditau, along with associated copper.

That sent us back to our models to revisit our previous conceptual work, and we are still in the process of updating our understanding of the geological systems at work at depth at Ditau.

Some reports, on petrology in particular, have yet to come in, so there are still important datasets that will become available to us that we haven’t yet fed into our models.

At this stage, all we really know is that there’s a zone of interest, that there’s an iron-rich hydrothermal breccia that starts at a depth of just over 290 metres, and which extends beyond the depths to which our hole drilled at 393m.

So, we know there’s material down there that’s worth following up on. We’re just working out how best to do it.

Once the remaining data from the recent campaigns comes in, we will also be considering how best to follow up on the other holes that we drilled.

In the meantime, we still have eight drill targets on Ditau which remain untested, and which we still believe have significant potential to yield up a carbonatite structure of the kind that we’re hoping to find rare earths in.

Exactly which of those targets we turn to next remains up for discussion, but we hope to be moving forward on Ditau in a variety of significant ways sooner rather than later.

As things stand today, it seems that the most immediate opportunity we have for making a discovery lies on the KCB, and it’s certainly true that if we do make a discovery there it will be easier to move into production than anything on the KSZ.

One reason for that is that while other companies have successfully developed copper mines in Botswana in the recent past, there’s nothing quite like the KSZ – not in Botswana, and maybe not anywhere.

So, we’ll be breaking new ground in several different ways if we do manage to get the KSZ up and running in a meaningful way.

Whatever happens, though, it looks likely to be quite a ride, with opportunities for value creation jumping out at us from several directions, and lots of near-term newsflow to keep things interesting.

And on that side of things, I’ll be sure to keep you updated.

Get metal on the books as soon as possible

“I’m just shocked by how much progress we’ve made in the last six months.”
This was the first thing Brett said to me when I was speaking to him earlier this week.
I speak with Brett every day, but as a reader of Boots on the Ground, I thought it would be good to give you a little insight into what’s on Brett’s mind at the moment.
He went on to say:
I guess I shouldn’t be shocked. But it’s very positive how much progress we have made in the last three months. It’s good to have such a clear grasp of the geology on the ground and have that backed up by such a detailed geochemical survey. It means we now have multiple well-defined targets. And that puts us in a very strong position.”
He's right, it does.
And I think our recent trip helped us get to this stage.
On the progress front, we spoke about the fact he’s been working on finding new investment so we can maximise the potential we have clearly seen across our various projects.
I asked him how that’s going?
“When I look at a company or project,” he explained, “the first thing I look at is the licence package and status of these. We have a unique position with our licences on the KSZ, which demands a special approach.”
“It’s a big project,” he went on. “People forget that. But I think the appointment of Tamesis Partners to lead our efforts in seeking a partner or partners for the KSZ provides significant confirmation of our own confidence in the opportunity.”
I’d agree. Tamesis have a lot of experience too.
They’re well known in mining circles too,” Brett pointed out. “And they’re attuned to identifying early opportunities. They’ve worked a lot with companies to grow these types of opportunities over time. They get what we’re doing, and I think that’s important. It helps too that we’ve got a good suite of projects on the go across the country. We’ve got a broad scope.”
I thought I’d be a bit cheeky and put him on the spot by asking which of our projects has him the most excited right now, and why?
“That’s tough,” he said. “In my career I’ve been closely involved with early drilling and taking projects through to that critical first resource, which can really underpin a company’s valuation. So, I guess you could say I’m someone who likes to get metal on the books as soon as possible.”
I pushed him to choose.
I’m going to say the KCB. We have multiple licences, each of which offers several chances for a discovery within it. For a single company to have all of these opportunities under one roof offers major upside potential.”
Speaking of Botswana more generally, I asked him why he thinks the country is so well primed right now?
He pointed out that Botswana has a great mineral endowment, which the world is only just waking up to. He agrees with me: this is the right time to be in the country.
He went on to say that critically, as far as he sees it, Botswana doesn’t suffer from the negative issues that can be found elsewhere in the world.
“It’s a safe place to work,” he said, “with good infrastructure, a clear mineral rights system, and a committed skilled workforce. People might not realise but our entire geological team is from Botswana. These are people who have accumulated years of knowledge in the area, and it makes sense to work closely with them.”
“Above all,” he told me. “The country is pro-mining and keen to diversify beyond its historic diamond-dominated sector. A lot of other countries, including in the west, could learn from this.”
I think he’s right.
And as I discovered for myself again recently, it’s just such a nice place to be. The feeling there is so positive.

Renewing our interest in the region

When we were speaking, we were just lining up our RNS about renewing our licenses and I asked him how important he thought it was for us to renew and expand our footprint in the country.
He agreed it was very important, and that our recent licence renewal, and the issue of an additional licence, confirms our footprint, particularly in the KSZ, and affirms Botswana’s recognition of the work already carried out by Kavango.
He was happy with the progress we’re making.
As am I.
Brett pointed out that it shows that Botswana is a place where, so long as one carries out work, renewal will generally be implemented.
That’s a good sign.
It’s what makes it such an attractive jurisdiction for companies like ours.
Finally, before we headed to our next meeting, I asked Brett what he was most looking forward to over the next few months where Kavango is concerned?
He explained:
“We have advanced our KCB licences as far as we can, ready for drilling and we are talking to drill contractors. I’m really looking forward to us moving to the next stage: drill testing and investigating as many of the targets that we have generated as we can.”
He’s not the only one.
I’m excited about the drill testing myself and I’m keen to see what comes of it.
As Brett pointed out, and as we often remind ourselves each day, there’s a lot to be positive about here at Kavango right now and we’ve got a lot of very interesting news on the horizon.
Like me, Brett is excited about what we’re doing, and I must say what a pleasure it is to have him as part of the team.
I hope you found it interesting hearing a little more of Brett’s opinion too—at some point I think we might try to do a webinar together just for readers of Boots on the Ground. Watch this space.
But I’ll be in touch again in the meantime, through this email and elsewhere, as things develop.