Image Resources (ASX: IMA) has appointed Peter Davies to the role of managing director to lead the company as it makes the transition from exploration to development at the major North Perth Basin mineral sands project.
Davies was appointed Project Manager of the North Perth Basin minerals sands project feasibility study in February this year.
He has widespread operational experience in the mineral sands industry. His previous roles include general manager, Chandala for the Tiwest joint venture and director of European operations for Kerr McGee Chemicals/Tronox.
Davies has also held a number of senior operational and project management positions, with companies including Billiton International Metals, Dominion Mining, Delta Gold and CSA Global.
In addition to his role as managing director, Davies will continue to project manager the North Perth Basin project.
Davies said he was excited about the new role with Image Resources.
"Work on the updating of the August 2011 Scoping Study and development of concepts for fast tracking project implementation is progressing encouragingly with indications suggesting the North Perth Project will outperform the Scoping Study projections," Davies said.
"The Company expects to be in a position to announce the results of this work in June."
Former managing director George Sakalidis will continue with Image as an executive exploration director, utilising his skills in identifying valuable heavy mineral deposits overlooked by other explorers.
Sakalidis' role will comprise defining further high grade resources globally for Image.
Executive director Roger Thomson will step down as a director.
North Perth Basin project on the fast track
Image Resources' North Perth Basin project hosts one of the largest and high grade undeveloped heavy mineral resources in Australia, covering more than 2,080 square kilometres.
The resource inventory currently stands at 7.9 million tonnes of heavy minerals in 11 separate JORC compliant resources, with current drilling programs directed at shallow high grade resources containing 3.1 million tonnes at an average grade of 6.5% heavy minerals that are rich in zircon.
Image has launched a Feasibility Study that is aimed at the commencement of mining operations in 2014, and is assessing a processing rate of 170,000 - 220,000 tonnes per annum, and will define the company as one the richest global producers of heavy minerals from its peer group of new producers.
An initial Scoping Study aimed at processing 3.6 million tonnes per year of heavy mineral sands estimated a CAPEX of $83.8 million, over a 12 year Life of Mine produced an extremely impressive Internal Rate of Return of 47.7% - 58.6%, and capital payback of less than 16 months.
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