Calico, Paramount in merger deal

By Pat Caldwell
For the Enterprise

VALE – There will be little change for a potential local gold mining operation in the wake of a merger between two mineral resource firms.

Earlier this month Paramount Gold Nevada Corp., announced it had entered into a “definitive arrangement agreement” to obtain all issued and outstanding common shares of the Canadian Firm Calico Resources Corp., the company in the process of developing the Grassy Mountain gold mine near Vale.

“This acquisition is consistent with Paramount’s strategy of acquiring mineral properties with known deposits in safe jurisdictions and advancing them toward production,” Glen Van Treek, the Chief Operating Officer and President of Paramount said in a press release.

The Grassy Mountain gold mine venture is still progressing through permitting procedures with the state but the merger will benefit shareholders in both firms, Calico Resources Corp., consultant Andy Bentz said.

“It merges two junior (companies) together and makes it stronger,” Bentz said. “All indications have been that they do mergers because they see value in the (Grassy Mountain)) project.”

The merger, though, will not be finalized until the shareholders in both firms sign off on the deal, Bentz said.

“It has been agreed to in principal by the management teams and boards of both companies but you must go to the stockholders. Shareholders have to ratify the decision of the management boards,” he said.

Calico Resources, an exploration and development company, currently boasts a 100 percent interest in the 9,300-acre Grassy Mountain Project, south of Vale.

Bentz said the merger will also help ensure the gold mine project remains a viable endeavor.

“It keeps intact the Grassy Mountain gold project, the mine project, keeps it healthy,” he said.

Bentz said once the permitting process is complete the venture could provide 200 construction jobs followed by another 150 to 200 slots for production and operations.

Bentz said the pre-application procedure for the venture is finished.

“The state of Oregon’s next action will be when the company files its consolidated permit application. While that is being done, the BLM will begin their work. They have to do an environmental impact study and they will issue a plan of operation,” Bentz said.

The permitting process is a long one according to Bentz.

“Calico took the project over in 2011, 2012, and we’ve been working on the permitting ever since,” he said.