SilverCrest Exceeds 2012 Production Market Guidance, Announces Q4
Results and 2013 Guidance
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwire) -- 01/16/13 --
SilverCrest Mines Inc. (TSX VENTURE:SVL)(NYSE MKT:SVLC)(NYSE
Amex:SVLC) (the "Company") is pleased to announce full year and Q4
production figures for 2012 from its 100% owned Santa Elena Mine
located in Sonora, Mexico and provide production and cost guidance
2012 Operating Highlights for Santa Elena
-- Produced 579,609 ounces of silver in 2012, exceeding market guidance by
33% of original estimation of 435,000 ounces of silver.
-- Produced 33,004 ounces of gold in 2012, just below market guidance of
-- Produced 2.37 million ounces of silver equivalent using a Ag:Au average
ratio of 54.3:1.
-- In Q4 surpassed "One Million Ounces of Silver" produced project to date
plus a quarterly record of 153,863 ounces silver.
-- Crusher throughput averaged 3,162 tonnes per day, 26% above the daily
designed capacity of 2,500 tonnes per day.
-- Completed Phase II leach pad construction on schedule and on budget
adding 2 years of capacity.
-- Installed new conveyor and stacker system for ore transport to the leach
pad reducing operating costs.
-- Secured major long lead time items for construction of a new
conventional 3,000 tpd CCD processing facility during 2013.
-- Underground decline development progressed to approximately 1,050 metres
-- Completion of approximately 30,000 metres of drilling which;
-- 1) confirmed and detailed underground resources to be converted to
-- 2) discovered the new high grade "El Cholugo" gold and silver zone
adjacent to the Main Mineralized Zone currently being mined and
-- 3) extended the Main Mineralized Zone more than 200 metres along
strike and down plunge.
J. Scott Drever, President stated; "2012 was a very successful year
for SilverCrest that marked our first full year in commercial
production. Management congratulates our operating team for
delivering on its commitments and meeting or exceeding our production
targets. Santa Elena exceeded silver initial production guidance by
33% and produced 2.37 million silver equivalent ounces in 2012. We
look forward to another exciting year at Santa Elena, remaining
focused on continuing steady production, optimizing operations, and
ensuring the expansion plan to double metal production in 2014 is
kept on schedule and within budget."
During the fourth quarter of 2012, Santa Elena operations produced a
record 153,863 silver ounces or 17% more than the same quarter in
2011. Silver production continues to set quarterly records due to
improvement in recoveries and higher grade ore being loaded on the
Phase II leach pad. Gold production of 7,831 ounces was consistent
with budget but 18% below the same quarter in 2011. Open pit tonnes
and grades continue to reconcile closely with the geological block
model and mine plan. All aspects of operations continue to function
well. The crushing circuit had an excellent fourth quarter with
average throughput of 3,355 tonnes per day, 3% below the same quarter
in 2011 and 34% above the daily design capacity of 2,500 tonnes per
Santa Elena Mine Operating
Highlights 2012 2011 Q4 2012 Q4 2011
Silver ounces produced 579,609 377,071 153,863 131,045
Gold ounces produced 33,004 26,969 7,831 9,536
Silver equivalent ounces
produced (1) 2,371,755 1,737,458 588,948 667,805
Silver ounces sold 588,312 344,724 171,714 120,199
Gold ounces sold 34,834 23,962 8,444 9,702
Silver equivalent ounces sold
(1) 2,477,623 1,570,106 640,856 666,303
Tonnes ore mined 1,092,305 979,464 301,295 326,496
Tonnes waste mined 4,640,700 3,579,045 924,927 1,310,764
Waste / ore ratio 4.25 3.65 3.07 4.01
Ore tonnes crushed 1,157,226 1,007,716 308,693 318,928
Average ore tonnes crushed per
day 3,162 2,761 3,355 3,467
Average silver ore grade (gpt)
loaded on pad 47.95 44.81 59.59 49.55
Average gold ore grade (gpt)
loaded on pad 1.43 1.82 1.42 1.90
Silver ounces delivered to pad 1,784,118 1,511,807 591,441 524,375
Gold ounces delivered to pad 53,296 61,279 14,089 20,094
Ag : Au Ratio (1) 54.3:1 50.4:1 55.6:1 56.3:1
(1) Silver equivalence is based on market spot prices per ounce of silver
and gold at the quarter and year end dates. All numbers are rounded.
In 2012, virtually all operating parameters exceeded those of 2011
with the exception of the gold grade and gold ounces delivered to the
pad. During the year the cut off grade was reduced from 0.38 gpt Au
eq. to 0.20 gpt Au eq. (applies a 55:1 Ag:Au ratio, metallurgical
recoveries, operating costs and current metal prices) which provided
more reserve tonnes but with a lesser reported gold grade. In
addition, much of the planned mining in 2012 was scheduled in a
portion of the open pit which was of a lower grade when compared to
those gold grades mined in 2011. Gold, along with silver grades are
anticipated to increase in 2013.
2013 Operating Targets and Capital Expenditure Guidance
- Produce 625,000 ounces of silver and 33,000 ounces of gold (2.4 million
ounces of silver equivalent, Ag:Au 55:1) with consistent production
levels expected each quarter.
- Estimated cash cost of $8.50 per silver equivalent ounce (Ag:Au 55:1).
- Major Capital Expenditures Estimates for Santa Elena Mine;
o Expansion Capital - Mill facility: $53.2 million
o Expansion Capital - U/G Mine Development: $ 7.8 million
o Expansion Drilling and PFS $ 3.5 million
o Sustaining Capital: $ 1.0 million
- Estimated Exploration Expenditures;
o La Joya - drilling and PEA: $ 6.5 million
o La Joya - Property Acquisition Payment: $ 4.0 million
The Company is targeting 2013 year end for the completion of the new
mill facility with commercial production expected in the first
quarter of 2014. Exploration expenditures may be adjusted throughout
the year depending on success.
The Qualified Person under National Instrument (NI 43-101) Standards
of Disclosure for Mineral Projects for this News Release is N. Eric
Fier, CPG, P.Eng, and Chief Operating Officer for SilverCrest Mines
Inc., who has reviewed and approved its contents.
SilverCrest Mines Inc. (TSX VENTURE:SVL)(NYSE MKT:SVLC)(NYSE
Amex:SVLC) is a Canadian precious metals producer headquartered in
Vancouver, BC. SilverCrest's flagship property is the 100%-owned
Santa Elena Mine, located 150 km northeast of Hermosillo, near
Banamichi in the State of Sonora, Mexico. The mine is a high-grade,
epithermal gold and silver producer, with an estimated life of mine
cash cost of US$8 per ounce of silver equivalent (55:1 Ag: Au).
SilverCrest anticipates that the 2,500 tonnes per day facility should
recover approximately 4,805,000 ounces of silver and 179,000 ounces
of gold over the life of the current open pit at the Santa Elena
Mine. A three year expansion plan is underway to double metals
production at the Santa Elena Mine (open pit and underground) and
exploration programs are rapidly advancing the definition of a large
polymetallic deposit at the La Joya property in Durango State.
This news release contains "forward-looking statements" within the
meaning of Canadian securities legislation and the United States
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking
statements concern the Company's anticipated results and developments
in the Company's operations in future periods, planned exploration
and development of its properties, plans related to its business and
other matters that may occur in the future. These statements relate
to analyses and other information that are based on expectations of
future performance, including silver and gold production and planned
work programs. Statements concerning reserves and mineral resource
estimates may also constitute forward-looking statements to the
extent that they involve estimates of the mineralization that will be
encountered if the property is developed and, in the case of mineral
reserves, such statements reflect the conclusion based on certain
assumptions that the mineral deposit can be economically exploited.
Forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of known and
unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which could cause
actual events or results to differ from those expressed or implied by
the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation: risks
related to precious and base metal price fluctuations; risks related
to fluctuations in the currency markets (particularly the Mexican
peso, Canadian dollar and United States dollar); risks related to the
inherently dangerous activity of mining, including conditions or
events beyond our control, and operating or technical difficulties in
mineral exploration, development and mining activities; uncertainty
in the Company's ability to raise financing and fund the exploration
and development of its mineral properties; uncertainty as to actual
capital costs, operating costs, production and economic returns, and
uncertainty that development activities will result in profitable
mining operations; risks related to reserves and mineral resource
figures being estimates based on interpretations and assumptions
which may result in less mineral production under actual conditions
than is currently estimated and to diminishing quantities or grades
of mineral reserves as properties are mined; risks related to
governmental regulations and obtaining necessary licenses and
permits; risks related to the business being subject to environmental
laws and regulations which may increase costs of doing business and
restrict our operations; risks related to mineral properties being
subject to prior unregistered agreements, transfers, or claims and
other defects in title; risks relating to inadequate insurance or
inability to obtain insurance; risks related to potential litigation;
risks related to the global economy; risks related to the Company's
status as a foreign private issuer in the United States; risks
related to all of the Company's properties being located in Mexico
and El Salvador, including political, economic, social and regulatory
instability; and risks related to officers and directors becoming
associated with other natural resource companies which may give rise
to conflicts of interests. Should one or more of these risks and
uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove
incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in
the forward-looking statements. The Company's forward-looking
statements are based on beliefs, expectations and opinions of
management on the date the statements are made. For the reasons set
forth above, investors should not place undue reliance on
The information provided in this news release is not intended to be a
comprehensive review of all matters and developments concerning the
Company. It should be read in conjunction with all other disclosure
documents of the Company. The information contained herein is not a
substitute for detailed investigation or analysis. No securities
commission or regulatory authority has reviewed the accuracy or
adequacy of the information presented.
J. Scott Drever, President
SILVERCREST MINES INC.
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as
defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts
responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
SilverCrest Mines Inc.
(604) 694-1730 ext. 108 or Toll Free: 1-866-691-1730
(604) 694-1761 (FAX)
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