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The most common methods for evaluating mineral properties remain the discounted cash flow techniques of NPV, IRR and payback period.
Sensitivity analyses in conjunction with Monte Carlo simulations can be used in addition, to give more information for a decision on the viability of a mineral project.
However, DCF valuations lack the flexibility that real option pricing allows management to incorporate for a more realistic decision.
Due to the current period of depressed metal prices and high costs which were inherited from the just ended commodities ‘super cycle’, these valuation techniques are employed together to best assist management make highly informed decisions.
An attempt is also made at forecasting the price of gold as well as accounting for the various risks to the project generating an acceptable return on the investment employed.
This text describes the analyses that can be used to provide such inputs to a final financial valuation which will be used to rank the decision to buy gold mines in different African jurisdictions.
Mining management, advisory consultants and investors should find this a useful guide for evaluating a gold project for purchase.
Solomon Gumbie was born in Zimbabwe and holds a B.Sc.
in Geology from Rhodes University and an M.Sc.
in Exploration Geophysics from the University of Zimbabwe.
He has worked in the mining industry as a geologist in exploration, mining and consultancy and this work was for an M.B.A.
degree with MANCOSA.
He currently resides in South Africa.
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