Insiders at This Gold Explorer Don’t Stop Buying (Even at a Premium)

Investors like to see companies where management and insiders are significant shareholders. Better yet, they like to see "those in the know" are buying. Insiders include anyone that has access to corporate information before it is disclosed to the public, such as employees, directors, relatives, etc. Being a shareholder because stock was awarded to an executive is one thing, but investors seeing executives buying stock with their own cash inspires a whole different level of confidence.

Investors should be taking note that insiders showing their support and optimism towards the future is exactly what is going on at Idaho Champion Gold Mines Canada Inc. (CSE:ITKO) (OTCQB:GLDRF). Looking back to late 2018 when Idaho Champion was brought public via a reverse takeover, insiders have been investing in the company on a regular basis. As evidenced on Sedi.com, ITKO executives have made dozens of purchases in the last couple years. For instance, in 2019, insiders participated in a private placement. Earlier this year, insiders were buying again, ponying up more of their own cash to add to their holdings.

In June, Idaho Champ CFO Julio DiGirolamo bought 70,000 units (comprised of one common share and a warrant to buy another share within 48 months at $0.25) at $0.15. CEO Jonathan Buick followed in July, buying 333,333 units at $0.15. Both purchases spoke to the confidence the two execs have in the company’s gold and cobalt projects, considering their purchase price was a premium to the value of the stock. Currently, shares of ITKO are trading around eight cents each.

All told, Idaho Champ executives and directors hold 23.58 million, or 22.5%, of the 104.77 million shares outstanding. They also hold almost 38% of the 8.25 million options outstanding currently and another 12.5% of the 51.06 million warrants on the books. Clearly, management has skin in the game to see the projects advanced.

While the company’s portfolio contains four cobalt properties in Lemhi County in Idaho’s Cobalt Belt, its primary focus is exploration at its gold projects in Idaho: Champagne in Butte County near Arco; and Baner in Idaho County. Champagne is the most advanced, consisting of 26 square kilometers of land hosting a large number of historic mines, veins, adits and artisanal pits, including a heap leach gold mine (Mine Hill) of Bema Gold that produced from 1990-1993. Over 100 Reverse Circulation drill holes and 1500 trench channel samples supported an historical (non-43-101 compliant) resource of 2.3 million tons of 1.2 g/t gold equivalent (AuEq).

Idaho Champ completed a drill program in 2020 and is concluding its 2021 drill program, with the results to date helping to expand the mineralization both horizontally and at depth. Drilling will provide some details on the potential gold resource to go along with an XRF study that indicated strong silver, copper, lead, and zinc mineralization.

A core drilling program (11 holes, 2,200 meters) at Baner completed earlier this year extended the known mineralized zone. Oxide and sulfide intersects assayed up to 6.41 g/t gold (1.0 metre) and 12.90 g/t gold (0.3 metres).

In addition to insiders buying, investors can also draw excitement from Idaho Champ Chief Geologist Rob Kell. Kell joined the company in March after 40+ years with mining giants, including like South American Mining and Exploration Corp., BHP Minerals, Homestake Exploration, Newmont Corp. (NYSE:NEM) (TSX:NGT), and Anaconda Mining Inc. (TSX:ANX) (OTCQX:ANXGF). Kell’s opinion seems aligned with ITKO management that Champagne could be host to "multi-million" ounces of gold. Against the backdrop of a highly successful career, Kell has called the drill targets at Champagne some of the most exciting of his career. Now that’s saying something.