ASX 200

Boss Energy’s Honeymoon uranium mine set for first production this month

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By Kristie Batten - 
Boss Energy ASX BOE Honeymoon first uranium production

Boss Energy (ASX: BOE) managing director Duncan Craib is heading to the company’s $105.4 million Honeymoon uranium mine in South Australia tomorrow as Boss looks to first production from the site.

Yesterday, the company announced it had successfully commissioned the ion-exchange circuit at Honeymoon.

“It is one of the biggest technical tests,” he told the Resources Rising Stars Gather Round conference in Adelaide this morning.

It paves the way for the first drum of uranium to be filled in the next two weeks.

Once ramped up, Honeymoon will produce 2.45 million pounds per annum of uranium at all-in sustaining costs of US$25.60 per ounce and all-in costs of US$32/lb.

The spot uranium price rose from US$87/lb to US$89/lb overnight.

“The margins are there,” Mr Craib said.

Multi-mine producer

Boss has a second horse in the uranium race after recently acquiring a 30% stake in enCore Energy Group’s Alta Mesa in situ recovery mine in Texas.

The company raised $215m as part of the transaction, which saw it pay US$60m for the stake.

The transaction also gave Boss an exclusive Australian licence to enCore’s prompt fission neutron tool technology.

Alta Mesa was a former producer and is in the process of a restart.

“That’s got a nameplate production of 1.5Mlbpa with the potential of going up to 2Mlbpa,” Mr Craib said.

Boss’ stake in enCore will boost its annual uranium production profile by around 500,000lb.

Like Honeymoon, Alta Mesa has plenty of exploration potential.

The current resource stands at around 20Mlb and is “set to grow”.

Early mover advantage

Honeymoon will be just the third operational uranium mine in Australia.

“There are lots of uranium companies around the world, but not that many are actually going to go into production, as we saw in the last cycle,” Mr Craib said.

“We’ve got that first-mover advantage to take advantage when the price starts to rise.”

The spot price reached more than US$100/lb in January.

Mr Craib is confident the price will move and believes the incentive price is at least US$85/lb against a backdrop of a tightening market.

“The price has to rise to incentivise the capital raising and debt financing to bring those projects on,” he said.

“As Cameco summed up recently, this is the highest uranium price going into a new bull cycle.”

‘Open for business’

Mr Craib declared Boss as being open for business with a focus on tier one jurisdictions.

“We’re now on the ASX 200, we’re recognised as a global player,” he said.

Boss’ share price rose through $5 this morning for the first time since late February.

Yesterday, Canaccord Genuity analyst James Bullen reiterated his speculative buy rating and $5.25 price target.