Stornoway Announces Acquisition Of "Aeon" Claims In Northern Quebec
July 11, 2011
Stornoway Diamond Corporation (TSX-SWY) is pleased to announce the acquisition of 49,350 hectares of new claims in northern Québec where previous exploration work has indicated the potential for undiscovered and potentially diamondiferous kimberlites. The new claims, wholly owned by Stornoway and designated the "Aeon Project", are situated 300 kilometers north of the Company's Renard Diamond Project and approximately 100 kilometers north of the network of Hydro-Québec power stations located along the all-season Trans-Taiga Highway. The Renard Diamond Project is Stornoway's flagship property, with a Feasibility Study and an associated Environmental and Social Impact Assessment on track for completion in the third quarter of this year. A location map for the Aeon claims can be found on Stornoway's website at http://stornowaydiamonds.com/_resources/Aeon-Location-jul-11-11.jpg.
The Aeon area of interest was first identified by a regional geochemical sampling program designed to test the potential for diamondiferous kimberlites over a broad region of northern Québec. Subsequent follow-up sampling has now confirmed the potential for multiple kimberlites or kimberlite clusters localized within two 10 km by 10 km source areas. Kimberlite indicator mineral grain counts in anomalous samples are comparable to those associated with the discovery of the Renard Diamond Project to the south, and the chemistry of the indicator minerals is suggestive of a diamondiferous source. Renard represents the nearest known kimberlite cluster to the Aeon Project, although other kimberlites have been identified in the Wemindji area some 490km to the west and in the Torngat area approximately 530km to the northeast.
Stornoway initially applied for the Aeon claims in April 2011, and claim certificates have now been officially issued by the Ministère des Ressources Naturelles et de la Faune. During 2011, Stornoway will undertake a high-resolution airborne geophysical survey at the property, and conduct detailed till sampling and follow-up prospecting on high-priority targets with the goal of preparing for discovery drilling in 2012.
The Aeon Project is located within the region of northern Quebec governed by the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement (1975, as amended; the "JBNQA"), a land claims agreement executed by the Government of Québec, the Government of Canada, Hydro-Québec, the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee) and the Northern Québec Inuit Association, amongst others. Within the context of the administrative regions of the JBNQA, the project is situated north of the 55th parallel. All required permits will be in place prior to exploration activities.
On April 26, 2011, Stornoway announced a $5.6 million budget for grass roots diamond exploration at projects within Canada where the potential exists for new kimberlite discoveries close to infrastructure. The 2011 Aeon exploration program is fully consistent with these objectives and represents about $1.1 million within this larger budget. All expenditures will be funded from existing cash resources.
About Stornoway Diamond Corporation
Stornoway Diamond Corporation is one of Canada's leading diamond exploration and development companies, involved in the discovery of over 200 kimberlites in seven Canadian diamond districts. The Company benefits from a diversified diamond property portfolio, a strong financial platform and management and technical teams with experience in each segment of the diamond "pipeline" from exploration to marketing. Stornoway's diamond exploration programs are conducted under the direction of Robin Hopkins, P.Geol. (NT/NU), Vice President, Exploration, a Qualified Person under NI 43-101. Mr. Hopkins has approved the contents of this release.
About the Renard Diamond Project
The Renard Diamond Project is located approximately 250 km north of the Cree community of Mistissini and 350 km north of Chibougamau in the James Bay region of North-Central Québec. In May 2010, Stornoway filed a National Instrument 43-101 compliant technical report for the Preliminary Assessment at Renard that estimated the project to have the potential to produce approximately 30 million carats of diamonds over a 25 year mine life, with a pre-tax Net Present Value of C$885 million (at an 8% discount rate) and an Internal Rate of Return of 24.8%. National Instrument 43-101 compliant Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources currently stand at 23.8 and 17.5 million carats respectively, with a further 23.5 to 48.5 million carats classified as a non-resource, "potential mineral deposit". All kimberlites remain open at depth. Total capital investment is currently estimated to be $511 million, with an average operating expenditure of approximately $67 million per year and a workforce of 300 people. Readers are referred to the technical report in respect of the Renard Diamond Project for further details and assumptions relating to the project.
On behalf of the Board
STORNOWAY DIAMOND CORPORATION
/s/ "Matt Manson"
President and Chief Executive Officer
For more information, please contact Matt Manson (President and CEO) at 416-304-1026
or Nick Thomas (Manager Investor Relations) at 604-983-7754, toll free at 1-877-331-2232
Pour plus d'information, veuillez contacter M. Ghislain Poirier, Vice-président Affaires publiques de Stornoway au 418-780-3938, firstname.lastname@example.org
This document contains "forward-looking information" within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation and "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. This information and these statements, referred to herein as "forward-looking statements" are made as of the date of this document and the Company does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update these forward-looking statements, except as required by law.
Forward-looking statements relate to future events or future performance and reflect current expectations or beliefs regarding future events and include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to: (i) the amount of mineral resources and potential mineral deposits; (ii) the amount of future production over any period; (iii) net present value and internal rates of return of the proposed mining operation; (iv) capital costs, operating costs and diamond price assumptions; (v) mine expansion potential and expected mine life; (vi) expected time frames for completion of permitting and regulatory approvals, completion of a Feasibility Study and making a production decision; (vii) future exploration plans; and (viii) sources of and anticipated financing requirements. Any statements that express or involve discussions with respect to predictions, expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance (often, but not always, using words or phrases such as "expects", "anticipates", "plans", "projects", "estimates", "assumes", "intends", "strategy", "goals", "objectives" or variations thereof or stating that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved, or the negative of any of these terms and similar expressions) are not statements of historical fact and may be forward-looking statements
All forward-looking statements are based on Stornoway's or its consultants' current beliefs as well as various assumptions made by and information currently available to them. Many of these assumptions are set forth in the news release and include: (i) estimates of net present value and internal rates of return; (ii) estimates of potential production and duration of mine life; (iii) estimated completion date for the Feasibility Study and related Environmental and Social Impact Assessment; (iv) required capital investment and estimated workforce requirements; (v) receipt of regulatory approvals on acceptable terms within commonly experienced time frames; (vi) the assumption that a production decision will be made, and that decision will be positive; (vii) anticipated timelines for the commencement of mine production; (viii) anticipated timelines related to the Route 167 extension and the impact on the development schedule at Renard; (ix) anticipated timelines for community consultations and the conclusion of an Impact and Benefits Agreement; (x) market prices for rough diamonds and the potential impact on the Renard Project's value; (xi) future exploration plans and objectives. Although management considers these assumptions to be reasonable based on information currently available to it, they may prove to be incorrect. Many forward-looking statements are made assuming the correctness of other forward looking statements, such as statements of net present value and internal rate of return, which are based on most of the other forward-looking statements and assumptions herein. The cost information is also prepared using current values, but the time for incurring the costs will be in the future and it is assumed costs will remain stable over the relevant period.
By their very nature, forward-looking statements involve inherent risks and uncertainties, both general and specific, and risks exist that estimates, forecasts, projections and other forward-looking statements will not be achieved or that assumptions do not reflect future experience. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements as a number of important factors could cause the actual outcomes to differ materially from the beliefs, plans, objectives, expectations, anticipations, estimates assumptions and intentions expressed in such forward-looking statements. These risk factors may be generally stated as the risk that the assumptions and estimates expressed above do not occur, including the assumption in many forward-looking statements that other forward-looking statements will be correct, but specifically include, without limitation, risks relating to variations in the grade, kimberlite lithologies and country rock content within the material identified as mineral resources from that predicted, variations in rates of recovery and breakage; the greater uncertainty of potential mineral deposits, developments in world diamond markets, slower increases in diamond valuations than assumed, risks relating to fluctuations in the Canadian dollar and other currencies relative to the US dollar, increases in the costs of proposed capital and operating expenditures, increases in financing costs or adverse changes to the terms of available financing, if any, tax rates or royalties being greater than assumed, results of exploration in areas of potential expansion of resources, changes in development or mining plans due to changes in other factors or exploration results of Stornoway or its joint venture partners, changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined, risks relating to receipt of regulatory approvals or settlement of an Impact and Benefits Agreement, the effects of competition in the markets in which Stornoway operates, operational and infrastructure risks and the additional risks described in Stornoway's most recently filed Annual Information Form, annual and interim MD&As, and Stornoway's anticipation of and success in managing the foregoing risks. Stornoway cautions that the foregoing list of factors that may affect future results is not exhaustive. When relying on our forward-looking statements to make decisions with respect to Stornoway, investors and others should carefully consider the foregoing factors and other uncertainties and potential events. Stornoway does not undertake to update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time by Stornoway or on our behalf, except as required by law.