Awalé Resources Commences Trading on TSX Venture Exchange

January 8, 2018

New Gold Explorer Focused on Côte d'Ivoire Greenstone Belt

VANCOUVER, Jan. 8, 2018 /CNW/ - Awalé Resources Limited ("Awalé" or the "Company") (TSXV: ARIC), listed on the TSX Venture Exchange (the "Exchange"), is pleased to announce that it will begin trading on the Exchange at market open today. 

Awalé is a gold exploration company focused on the highly prospective Birimian Greenstone Belts of West Africa. 

The Company's main focus is on the Bondoukou Project in the North East of Côte d'Ivoire where 4,743m of RC drilling has recently completed in 57 holes over the first 4 drill ready targets from the identified initial 12.  The targets are potential high grade mineralised systems along structures defined by aerial and ground geophysics with coincident >50 to 100ppb Auger geochemistry at the Fako and Elisabeth prospects as well as artisanal mining zones at Casino and Ngouan that have returned moderate to high grade rock chip samples up to 589g/t Au at Casino and 16.7 g/t Au at Ngouan.  Broad alteration zones have been observed in the drilling at the Fako and Casino prospects. The Fako and Fako South prospects have shown a combination of fuchsite dominant alteration, with sericite, albite, and carbonate alteration with a lesser sulphide (predominantly pyrite), While early logging at Casino has revealed a sericite dominant alteration system associated with sulphide development in the core of the alteration. Both prospects have associated quartz veining.

Results of this drilling are expected in late January which will determine future strategy for these 4 targets.  The Company is also continuing regional exploration on the balance of the 1,200km2 area comprising the Bondoukou Project in order to develop and advance further identified target areas to drill ready status.  For further details, see the technical report on the Bondoukou Project, prepared in accordance with NI 43-101, which was filed on the Company's SEDAR profile on December 28, 2017 (www.sedar.com).

Furthermore, the Company also has a granted license in the North West of Côte d'Ivoire, being its 90% interest in the Odienne Project area (400km2 granted), along with a number of strategic permits under application.  

The private placement the Company completed concurrently with its acquisition of these properties raised gross proceeds of C$3,481,975 to further advance exploration efforts over these target areas.

Glen Parsons CEO commented today:

"I am really encouraged to see the strong support from our private placement for our new greenfield exploration company. The support for the successful management team from new, and our supportive old Mariana shareholders, certainly gives us a lot of confidence as we commence Awalé's journey.  We have effectively spun out the West African assets of Mariana Resources Limited, which were held when Mariana was acquired by Sandstorm Gold Limited (TSX: SSL). Further details are contained in the Company's Filing Statement, which was filed on SEDAR on December 28, 2017.

We finished the 2017 year with 5,000m of RC drilling on our four most advanced targets at Bondoukou, and we will look to seeing results from this later in January. Encouragingly we start the 2018 year with good momentum and a strong treasury to continue our exploration strategy. We are also pleased to have technical assistance from Eric Roth, a new director of the Company, and Neil Adshead, who has been appointed to the Company's technical advisory committee.

I look forward to updating the market with results and developments accordingly."

The Awalé Team driving and implementing the Company's strategy are included below with their biographies:

Glen Parsons (CA, BComm Economics) - CEO -  is a qualified Chartered Accountant.  Glen Parsons has over 20 years' international experience in company building, corporate finance, treasury, operational and general management. His most recent role was as Chief Executive Officer of Mariana Resources, running a diversified global exploration and development company, which was acquired in July 2017 by Sandstorm. He is also Non-Executive Chairman of AfriTin Mining Limited (AIM:ATM), an African tin focused exploration and development company.  He has built new profitable businesses and divisions within both large and small organizations. Glen was also an executive director of RFC Corporate Finance Ltd, a specialist minerals resources investment bank and fund manager. His specific experience in the junior mining and exploration sector is extensive with appropriate LSE-AIM, TSX and TSXV exchange knowledge and has been involved with a number of successful global equity and debt raisings for junior and developing mining companies on these exchanges.

Eric Roth (PhD, Economic Geology University of Western Australia, FAusIMM) - Director - is Santiago based and was most-recently COO of Mariana Resources, which was acquired by Sandstorm in July 2017. Prior to this he was CEO of Aegean Metals Group Inc., President & CEO and then Director of Extorre Gold Mines Ltd. until Extorre was acquired by Yamana Gold Inc in June 2012. Prior to Extorre, Eric was engaged as a consultant on South American gold projects for Exeter Resource Corp. and Kinross Gold Corp. From January 2002 to March 2008, he was also employed by AngloGold Ashanti Ltd, initially as the Lima-based Peru Project and South American Opportunities Manager and subsequently as the Johannesburg-based Global Head of Greenfields Exploration. He is also principal of consulting firm ER Global Consulting SA.

Ron Ho (CPA, CA, CFA) - Director -  has been with Sandstorm Gold Limited for the past 9 years, focused on structuring mine financing transactions and corporate development. Ron was a director of Mariana Resources prior to it being purchased by Sandstorm.  Mr. Ho is a Chartered Accountant, holds the designation of Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder and received a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of British Columbia.

Derk Hartman (MSC mining Engineering) - Director - has over 17 years of experience in the banking and mining sectors and has been a founder, officer and director of several public and private companies. He most recently served as the Chief Financial Officer of TSX-listed Silver Bear Resources, building the Mangazeisky silver mine in Far East Russia, responsible for the transformation from exploration into production company, building the project and operations team and implementing the internal and project control systems. He is a former Director of Investment Banking at BMO Capital Markets. Having worked for 12 years in Natural Resources investment banking, he has extensive debt and equity capital markets experience, as well as experience with the stock exchange listing process, takeover rules and corporate governance of both the Toronto and London markets. Mr. Hartman holds a MSc Mining Engineering from Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands) and the FT Non-Executive Director Diploma (UK).

Sharon Cooper (CA, BA) - CFO - is a Chartered Accountant with over ten years' experience in accounting and auditing roles for mining and mining-related companies. Sharon began her career as an auditor at Ernst & Young, working on internal and external audits; and gained experience working on larger audits for major mining companies, as well as junior explorers and mining related companies. Sharon has taken on several group accounting and financial reporting roles for junior exploration companies and a mining services company since leaving Ernst & Young, and has been working as Finance Manager for Mariana Resources for the past two years.

Andrew Chubb – COO - is an economic geologist with 17 years of international experience in precious and base metal exploration with a particular focus and experience on the greenstone belts of west Africa.  He has acted both as consultant and company geologist. He has a proven track record in exploration, project management with developed technical and management skills. Andrew is a Member of the AIG and SEG.

The total issued and outstanding shares, following Awalé's private placement and the acquisitions, is 28,906,103 common shares.  Sandstorm Gold now holds 3,137,200 shares of the Company and warrants to purchase an additional 500,000 shares at $0.40 per share, which represent 10.85% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a non-diluted basis and 12.37% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a partially-diluted basis (assuming exercise of Sandstorm's warrants).  Awalé Holdings Limited now holds 3,800,000 shares of the Company and warrants to purchase an additional 200,000 shares at $0.25 per share, which represent 13.15% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a non-diluted basis and 13.74% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a partially-diluted basis (assuming exercise of Awalé Holdings Limited's warrants).  Prior to the Company's acquisition of the properties and concurrent private placement, Ron Ho was the Company's largest shareholder, holding 1,737,501 common shares and 100,000 incentive stock options of the Company, which represented 21.72% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a non-diluted basis and 22.68% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a partially-diluted basis (assuming exercise of Mr. Ho's incentive stock options).  Mr. Ho now holds 1,937,501 common shares, 100,000 warrants, and 100,000 incentive stock options, which represent 6.70% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a non-diluted basis and 7.34% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares on a partially-diluted basis (assuming exercise of the Mr. Ho's warrants and incentive stock options).

We also announce new auditors for the coming year.  Manning Elliot have resigned effective December 29, 2017 with Ernst & Young having been appointed for the coming year effective the same date.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD

AWALE RESOURCES LIMITED.                                                                                    

"Glen Parsons"                                                                                                

Glen Parsons, President and CEO                                                                                            

Qualified Person
The technical and scientific information contained in this news release has been reviewed and approved for release by Andrew Chubb, the Company's Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101. Mr Chubb is the Company's Chief Operating Officer and holds an Economic Geology degree, is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists (AIG), and is a Fellow of the Society of Economic Geologists (SEG).  Mr Chubb has 17 years of experience in international minerals exploration and mining project evaluation.

Forward-Looking Information

This news release contains "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking information. Actual results and developments may differ materially from those contemplated by such information. The statements in this news release are made as of the date hereof. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking information except as required by applicable law.

Cautionary Statement

The Exchange has in no way passed upon the merits of the proposed transaction and has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release.

SOURCE Awale Resources