BY LINDSEY WARD
Everything Alamos Gold Inc. touches this year seems to be turning to — well, you know.
The Canadian company has been celebrating its 20th anniversary in a big way — not only with gatherings and gifts for its nearly 2,000 employees but also a recently green-lit expansion that has created a golden opportunity for one northern Manitoba community.
To honour Alamos Gold’s big 2-0, the gold mining company’s CEO and president John McCluskey and other members of the executive team spent time earlier this year visiting its current operations — the Young-Davidson and Island Gold mines in northern Ontario and the founding Mulatos mine in Sonora, Mexico — to connect with employees and recognize their efforts.
“After two decades as CEO, it is very positive to see that we are a community of people who are passionate about our work, dedicated to safety in our workplace and committed to environmental stewardship and meaningful engagement with our host communities,” says McCluskey, who co-founded the company with mining hall-of-famer Chester Millar in 2003. “This is consistent across Alamos Gold, and I am proud to see it.”
The anniversary festivities also included a visit to the site of the company’s future redevelopment of two previously operational mines in Lynn Lake, Man. — which is set to go ahead after hitting some major milestones this year.
Alamos received important federal and provincial government permits for the project and updated its 2017 feasibility study, reporting Lynn Lake’s mineral reserves are 44 per cent larger than they previously thought. In other good news, its life of mine production will be 2.2 million ounces (a 46 per cent increase from 2017) and its mine life will now be 17 years rather than the 10 they had originally predicted. This means long-term employment for the surrounding communities — a win-win for all involved.
On June 13, Alamos also made major headway by signing an important impact benefit agreement with Marcel Colomb First Nation — an important partnership that will support the otherwise vulnerable community in many ways, McCluskey says.
“For the Lynn Lake project, we plan to hire locally as the operation will require more than 400 long-term jobs. We will also continue to support local community initiatives and projects, as we have since acquiring the project, including educational projects that are tailored to support the local community and young people.”
The collaboration with Marcel Colomb First Nation — a remote band located 1,082 kilometres north of Winnipeg — also means Alamos Gold can ensure the Lynn Lake project can operate in an environmentally responsible manner, a crucial component of the gold biz.
“Alamos has always prioritized these important areas of sustainability, with the intention of ensuring that local communities will have brighter futures beyond the mine’s presence,” McCluskey says.
A little extra funding never hurts, either. And the enthusiasm for mining potential in northern Manitoba has sparked support from the provincial government through the Manitoba Mineral Development Fund (MMDF). The MMDF is providing $300,000 to Alamos Gold for Phase 2 of their exploration project in Lynn Lake, which includes 8,000 metres of drilling, a summer field program and work on a modern drill core storage facility at MacLellan (one of the two sites just east of Lynn Lake).
“Ultimately, good projects are becoming increasingly rare, especially within top jurisdictions like Canada, and it is positive to have partners when these opportunities arise, like the Lynn Lake project,” McCluskey says.
Alamos Gold has seen its share of opportunities over the past two decades through the merger of Alamos Minerals and National Gold. But it’s the “good neighbour” culture — and core values of safety, teamwork, environmental sustainability, integrity and commitment — that allows its employees and the company to thrive.
In addition to the 20th anniversary highlights, Alamos Gold rang the 10-year bells at the New York Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange this year. Rebecca Thompson, vice-president of public affairs, says this combination of celebratory events along with the promise of a new operation has created a strong sense of hope for the organization’s future.
“This is just the first 20 years,” she says. “There’s much more to come.” ■
Read the rest of the Winter 2023 MBiz Magazine here.