Havilah's Portia project in South Australia after just 6-weeks of construction. Photo: Havilah & CMC

Havilah's Portia project in South Australia after just 6-weeks of construction. Photo: Havilah & CMC

Havilah Resources: Kangaroos
at Kalkaroo

Issue 127, June 2015

Continued from Page 1 ➤

Havilah is 27 per cent owned by Giles and the company's co-founders, explaining its low-key ethos: investors are treated as owners, rather than an endless font of capital.

A further 20 per cent is held by private Australian investors who have been with the company for at least 10 years, slamming a proxy bid for the board in 2013 by Warwick Grigor, former chairman of brokerage Canaccord Australia, who claimed Havilah was worth more than A$1bn based on its discoveries. The result was “a victory for mum and dad investors over corporate high-flyers," according to The Australian.

“We have resisted the easy placement deals offered by brokers that overnight (and without warning) dilute shareholders without the opportunity to participate,” Havilah's chairman said at the time. “A share in Havilah Resources is not a betting ticket. It is an investment in a seat on the bus to building a new mining company. If you want to gamble, go to the casino.”

Havilah is a case-study in how other mining companies would develop if they were less quick to issue shares. Progress has been slow, but money has not been wasted: Havilah has a three-man board (until recently, two of them geologists) and has methodically worked through permitting, rather than raising capital to fund consultants. “This is not a story for short-term focused investors,” says broker, Phillip Capital.

It is a reflection of the personalities involved. “I grew up on a farm in the country and we spend a lot of time working out in the bush,” Giles says. “We have a passion for exploring, finding things and trying to develop them. We're technical people. We've had our head down doing exploration and we tend not to put a high priority on promotion.”

Kalkaroo

Cash flow could change the company: Giles is increasingly spending time in Hong Kong and Singapore, talking to new investors. Portia is meanwhile just a stepping-stone for the company, funding Kalkaroo. Havilah has bought the sheep station above the deposit (allowing it to allocate its state-regulated vegetation offset budget in-house) and final permitting is due this year. A go-ahead decision is due in 2016.

“Kalkaroo's next,” Giles says. “We're on the mining path now.”

What does Havilah mean? “It's from a Hebrew word. It actually comes from the Old Testament, where it talks about the Garden of Eden. The land of Havilah is the land of gold. And better than that, in one verse it says that the gold in that land was good, so we assume that means a high-grade economic deposit.”

“A share in Havilah is not a betting ticket… If you want to gamble, go to the casino.”

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