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Kirkland Lake Gold Appoints Seasoned Mining Exec To Its Board To Assist With Transition To Intermediate Gold Producer

Kirkland Lake Gold (TSE:KGI)(AIM:KGI) has added Claude Lemasson to its board as lead non-executive director, it said Tuesday, as the gold development company works to expand its production rate.

Lemasson, aged 48, is a mining executive and professional engineer, with 25 years of experience in open pit and underground gold mining and the development of production expansion programs in North and South America.

Most recently, he was the president, COO, and director ofGuyana Goldfields.

Before this, he spent six years as the mine general manager atGoldcorp's (TSE:G) Red Lake mine, where he worked closely with Kirkland Lake Gold's current COO, together overseeing production growth to 600,000 ounces per year and putting the mine's high-grade zone into production.

While with Goldcorp, Claude also spent time as GM of projects in Canada and the U.S., according to Kirkland's statement, where he was responsible for all project management activities.

"We are extremely pleased Claude will be joining our board as lead independent director. We are close to our transition to an intermediate gold producer, with our growth plans anchored around increasing production rates from the higher-grade South Mine Complex," said Kirkland chairman, Harry Dobson.

"Claude's experience managing a similar expansion program at Goldcorp's Red Lake mine will be a tremendous asset to the company to help guide us to our ultimate production rate of 2,200 tons per day."

Kirkland has also appointed Lemasson as the chair of the company's recently formed health, safety, and environmental committee, and chair of the operations committee.

Earlier this month, the company finished its fiscal year strong, with figures released showing an uptick in revenue and record production for the gold miner's final quarter of fiscal 2013, a result in large part attributable to the completion of the service cage project which allowed for an almost doubling of hoisting capacity. This increase of hoisting capacity - reported to gradually work up to the rate of 2,200 tons per day - is also integral to the production guidance of 150,000 to 180,000 ounces of gold for the year to 30 April, 2014.

Ounces produced in Kirkland's latest quarter came in at 31,503 from 89,384 tons of ore processed - a record for both the company and the Macassa mine in Ontario -- at a head grade of 0.37 ounces of gold per ton (opt) and a gold recovery rate of 95.94 per cent. Ounces sold in the quarter came to 32,123.

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