Investing

Steppe Gold

Overview

ATO gold mine in Mongolia

Steppe Gold (TSX:STGO) is a gold producer and precious metals explorer headquartered in Mongolia, with a global resource of 4.5 million ounces (Moz) gold equivalent, a leadership team with a strong track record in resource development, and a capital structure backed by industry leading investors.

The company owns the Altan Tsaagan Ovoo (ATO) and the Uudam Khundii (UK) gold projects, both in Mongolia, and the Tres Cruces gold project in Peru.

Steppe Gold commenced Phase 1 gold production at its 100 percent owned flagship ATO project in April 2020. The asset, which consists of four significant deposits including the high-grade Mungu deposit, has a current resource of more than 1.7 Moz gold equivalent, of which 1.32 Moz will be recovered in 14 years.

In January 2024, Steppe entered into an agreement to acquire Boroo Gold, a leading gold producer in Mongolia, with an average production of 60,000 oz per year with a mine life beyond 2030. Once complete, the acquisition will bring Steppe’s Phase 1 annual gold production from 30,000 to 90,000 oz.

ATO’s Phase 2 expansion project is fully funded, following a $150-million financing deal with the Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia. Commissioning and production for Phase 2 is expected to begin in the final quarter of 2025. With 1.23 Moz in gold equivalent resource to be recovered over 12 years, this second phase is expected to produce more than 100,000 oz of gold equivalent annually, generating $2.2 billion in revenue.

The UK gold project is a first-of-its-kind joint venture between Steppe Gold and the Bayankhongor Provincial Government, wherein Steppe Gold owns 80 percent of the 14,400-hectare property. Initial results from trenching at the Milky Way and the Altan Soum prospects highlighted a mineralized system of at least 700 meters in length and up to 12 meters wide with individual meter sampling results up to 1.49 grams per ton (g/t) gold, 450 g/t silver, 2.98 percent copper, 3.98 percent lead and 0.31 percent zinc.

Steppe Gold is continuing to assess a number of additional opportunities to acquire exploration licenses and mining projects across Mongolia, led by a management team with a track record of success in the country.

With an eye for opportunities beyond Mongolia, Steppe completed the acquisition of Anacortes Mining in 2023, which positions the company for more growth with the development of the high-grade Tres Cruces oxide project in Peru. The project is located approximately 10 kilometers from the Lagunas Norte mine. Total gold production at Tres Cruces is expected at 481,000 ounces over a 7-year mine life, with a US$158-million after-tax NPV (5 percent) at US$1,700, and after-tax IRR at 30.9 percent.

Company Highlights

Precious metals producer based in Mongolia with a total resource of 4.5 Moz gold equivalentCurrently in Phase 1 production at 100 percent owned ATO gold mine, and fully funded for Phase 2 expansionA joint venture partnership is in place for the UK project with the Mongolian governmentManagement has a proven track record of success in MongoliaHolds one of the largest exploration land packages in Mongolia and one of the world’s highest-grade deposits in Peru

Key Projects

Mongolian Assets

ATO Gold Mine

The multi-phase, 5,493-hectare ATO gold-silver project is located in the Dornod province of eastern Mongolia and fully permitted for 30 years. Steppe Gold commenced gold production at the ATO project in April 2020. The ATO deposit contains mineral reserves of 29.1 Mt at 1.13 g/t gold and 12.42 g/t silver. It contains approximately 1.7 Moz gold equivalent in reserves, of which 1.32 Moz will be recovered over 14 years, including oxide. To date, the mine has produced 100,166 oz of gold and 151,000 oz of silver. Additional exploration programs focusing on oxides are on-going.

Exploration

Centerra Gold (TSX:CG), the prior operator and owner of the ATO project, spent over US$25 million on exploration, including the completion of 67,000 meters of drilling and 28,421 meters of trenching. Since acquiring the property, Steppe Gold has completed an additional 20,000 meters of drilling.

ATO 4 and Mungu Discovery

The Mungu discovery is located northeast of the current resource from the ATO 4 deposit. The discovery is located on a 20-kilometer-long structurally controlled, north-trending, mid-sulfidation epithermal gold-silver system. Steppe Gold believes that the ATO 4 deposit may be semi-continuous to the mineralization at the Mungu discovery. The ATO 4 Deposit currently remains open along strike to the north and at depth.

UK Gold Project

The 14,397-hectare Uudam Khundii property consists of one exploration license and is located 800 kilometers southwest of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The property is an 80/20 joint venture with the Provincial Government of Bayankhongor.

Initial results from 18 trenches for 933 meters at the Milky Way Prospect and the Altan Soum Prospect highlighted a mineralized system of at least 700 meters in length and up to 12 meters wide with individual meter sampling results up to 1.49 g/t gold, 450 g/t silver, 2.98 percent copper, 3.98 percent lead and 0.31 percent zinc.

The property is located between Erdene Resource Development Corporation’s (TSX:ERD) Bayan Khundii gold discovery and the Altan Nar epithermal gold deposits.

Management Team

Bataa Tumur-Ochir – Chairman, CEO and Member of the Board

Bataa Tumur-Ochir is responsible for new business acquisitions, development, government and community relations and daily operations in Mongolia. He has strong relationships with all levels of government in Mongolia and was recently appointed independent advisor to the Ministry of Mining and Heavy Industry responsible for foreign investment and promotion.

He is currently a director at GCD Mongolia and CEO and executive director of ASX-listed Wolf Petroleum. Under his guidance, Wolf Petroleum was awarded the “Operator of the Year Award” from the Petroleum Authority of Mongolia, and today, Wolf Petroleum is recognized as the fastest-growing petroleum exploration company with the largest petroleum exploration acreage in Mongolia. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and graduate certificates in international business and marketing from Australia and Singapore.

Tumur-Ochir is a founding director of Steppe Gold and he has led the company as CEO since December 2019. He is also now the largest shareholder of the Company, on a partially diluted basis.

Byambatseren Tsogbadrakh – President

Byambatseren Tsogbadrakh is a founding member of Steppe Gold. A Mongolian national, she has held progressively senior positions in the company over the last few years.

Jeremy South – Senior VP and CFO

Jeremy South has been a director of Steppe Gold since March 2017. He has over 33 years of experience in M&A, capital markets and private equity in Europe, North America and Australia, including senior positions in investment banking at Deutsche Bank, NatWest Markets and Deloitte. For 10 years, he was a Global Leader and Mining M&A Advisor at Deloitte.

Based in Beijing for four years, he advised leading Asian trading houses and financial investors on mining M&A, financing and strategy, and he has worked with some of Asia’s largest companies. He acted as chairman of Aldridge Minerals Inc. up until its recent sale to Trafigura Ventures. South is a chartered accountant and holds a Bachelor of Economics from Monash University (Australia). He holds the ICD.D designation as a graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors.

Enkhtuvshin Khishigsuren – VP Exploration

Enkhtuvshin Khishigsuren has over 30 years of Mongolian mineral exploration experience. He spent the first 10 to 12 years of his career at Central Geological Expedition doing regional geological mapping in various areas of Mongolia, followed by seven years as senior exploration manager on the exploration of precious metal in Mongolia for Harrods Minerals.

Since 2005, he has been running his own company, Erdenyn Erel, which provides exploration and consulting services to western exploration and mining companies. He is responsible for identifying targets and properties based on his knowledge and experience. His experience has resulted in the discovery of several prospective gold and copper deposits in Mongolia; such as the multimillion-ounce gold deposit Olon Ovoot, the Zuun mod molybdenum porphyry deposit and the Shand copper porphyry deposit. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geological exploration from Azerbaijan State University and a Master’s in geological science from Shimane University, Japan.

Patrick Michaels – Director

Patrick Michaels is the Chairman of Zuri-Invest AG and the Chairman of Asty Capital AG in Zurich, Switzerland. He has been involved in numerous financings of gold mines in North America, among others. He is a well-respected financial adviser and fund manager throughout Europe.

Michaels has extensive experience in the fields of mining finance, fund management and asset allocation. He has a background in law and economics and did his training in the areas of private banking and investment research at UBS in Zurich. Additionally, he attended post-graduate courses at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado.

Dr. Batjargal Zamba – Director

Dr. Batjargal Zamba has over 35 years of experience working for the government in Mongolia, dealing with issues of environmental protection and climate change. He was the Minister of the Environment of Mongolia from 1990 to 1996 and Director General of the National Agency for Meteorology, Hydrology and Environmental Monitoring from 1996 to 2001. Dr. Batjargal has experience in working outside of Mongolia due to his engagement in international bi-and multilateral cooperation activities.

He was the Ambassador of Mongolia to Japan from 2001 to 2005. Between 2005 and 2011, he worked in New York as a Representative of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to the UN. Since 2014, he has served as an independent consultant on climate change and the development of green policy for public institutions and non-profit organizations. He was also an advisor at the Office of the President of the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA) in Ulaanbaatar (2014 to 2016). He received his Ph.D. in physics and mathematics in 1978 from the Hydrometeorological State University, St.Petersburg, Russia.

Batukhuu Budnyam – Director

Batukhuu Budnyam is a successful entrepreneur and financial expert who has extensive experience in the banking and finance sectors in Mongolia. Until recently, Budnyam served as Advisor to Chinggis Khaan Bank. Prior to joining Chinggis Khaan Bank, he was Managing Director of Organic Solutions Mongolia LLC and previous to that, he was Managing Director of MFS Capital LLC. Budnyam is a Mongolian native and speaks fluent English, Russian and German. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the National University of Mongolia.

Sereenen Jargalan – Director

Sereenen Jargalan has been a professor at the Mongolian University of Science and Technology since September 2003 and head of the Department of Mineral Exploration since 2011 where she teaches ore geology and metallogeny to bachelors, masters and doctorate students and supervises Ph.D. student research projects. She has a Ph.D. and Master’s in Earth Science from the Institute of Mineralogy, Petrology and Economic Geology at Tohoku University in Japan, focused on petrology of igneous rocks and a Bachelor of Mineral Exploration from the Mongolian Polytechnical University.

She completed postdoctoral work focused on the REE potential in Mongolia at the Mineral Resources Research Group, Institute for Geo-Resources and Environment and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Japan. She has co-authored or contributed to over 50 academic books, articles and other publications. She has been the recipient of numerous academic awards and honors in both Magnolia and Japan.

Steve Haggarty – Director

Steve Haggarty is the Managing Director of Haggarty Technical Services Corporation and a registered member of the Professional Engineers Ontario. He has over 35 years of industrial experience both on-site and at a corporate level, involving several precious metal and copper producers, with a background in project design, commissioning, start-up, metallurgy, process optimization, project management, reclamation and closure.

With a mining career spanning nearly four decades, Haggarty’s industry experience includes 24 years in operations and 14 years in corporate and EPCM-related roles. Most recently, he was Senior Director for the Metallurgy at Barrick Gold Corp. In this role, he was responsible for operational performance improvements, defining GeoMet models, processing strategy and risk mitigation. Haggarty has worked at multiple mine sites around the world, including as General Manager of Barrick Gold’s Veladero heap leach project in Argentina. He is considered a technical leader in heap leach processing, implementation and optimization.

Maria Lerner – Director

Maria Lerner has operated a private tax accounting firm since 1986 and possesses an expertise in domestic and foreign tax planning, financial forensics, fraud prevention and dispute resolution. She is a certified public accountant, certified financial forensic, certified forensic accountant homeland security level V, and a graduate of the American College of Forensic Examiners. Lerner is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, American College of Forensic Examiners, National Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, Institute of Business Appraisals, National Conference of CPA Practitioners, and National Association of Tax Preparers.

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