CDNX feeds on high-tech, biotech sectors

Propelled by the speculative frenzy in the high-tech and biotech sectors, the Canadian Venture Exchange gained 150.66 points, or 3.6%, over the report period ended March 14 to close at 4,375.45. The mining index, which is dominated by dormant resource companies looking for Internet opportunities, rose 215.06 points, or 5.2%, to finish at 4,316.1.

Navigator Exploration rose 10 to close at $1. The company has arranged a $2-million special warrant private placement with units priced at 90 each. The recent appointment of Eira Thomas as president (formerly she was vice-president exploration for Aber Resources) signals a strong focus on diamond exploration. Navigator holds a diverse portfolio of projects, including diamonds in the Northwest Territories and Ontario, and base metals and gold in the Territories and Ireland. In January, the company entered into a joint venture with Canabrava Diamonds to explore for diamonds in the Superior Craton of northern Ontario, and went on to acquire 15 properties in the Territories from Aber.

Tan Range Exploration was down 2 at 48. Newmont Mining recently completed a 106-hole rotary-air-blast (RAB) drilling program on Tan’s Luhala property in Tanzania, outlining several wide zones of gold mineralization. The better intercepts included 8 metres of 4.5 grams gold per tonne and 25 metres of 2.31 grams. A 6,000-metre second-phase RAB program is to begin in April. Newmont can earn an initial 60% interest by spending US$1.5 million on exploration. Elsewhere in Tanzania, Tan Range is awaiting further assay results from core drilling on its Itetemia project, a joint venture with Barrick Gold, which is developing the adjacent Bulyanhulu gold mine.

Calgary-based Savanna Resources finished the week down 3 at 10. The company says it is negotiating the possible acquisition of a gold property in California and a nickel prospect in Quebec.

Marum Resources was up 3 at 60 on the announcement that it has begun drilling up to 10 holes on the Chinchaga gold property in Alberta. The company says it has identified abundant gold particles in stream sediments, but fire assay and bottle-roll leach analysis of weathered outcrop returned either highly erratic or negative results. Joint-venture partner International Tower Hill Mines added 55, closing at $2.70.

Orcana Resources fell back 5 to finish the week at 31. The company is pursuing potential Internet opportunities. Consolidated Magna Ventures moved as high as 37 before pulling back to 20, for a 3 gain. The company has arranged a private placement of 4 million units priced at 15 apiece for proceeds of $600,000. Canaccord analyst Andrew Muir reports that the company is changing its name to Eclipse Ventures to pursue new business opportunities. Golden Kootenay Resources reached a high of 22 before pulling back to close down a penny at 11. While the company says it is undergoing a rollback of 5-to-1 and a name change, it intends to continue in the exploration business. Sur American Gold announced it is seeking e-commerce and biotech opportunities. The issue closed up 16 at 25. Olympic Resources was up 17 at $1.40 on news that it had commenced due diligence of several investment opportunities. The company has arranged a brokered placement of 1 million units at $1.20 each.


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