Octogenarian self styled 'treasure hunter' Dave Lowell, who we called Mining's Greatest Explorer in a January, 2013 short film about the legend, has launched a new copper exploration and development company, Lowell Copper, and subsequently raised $11.4 million in a financing in which we participated (details).

Mining Dave Lowell Arizona

Dave Lowell at his ranch, January 2013 - Photo: Adam Humphreys

The company's principal asset is the Ricardo project in Chile, nearby to CODELCO's massive Chuquicamata "Chuqui" mine, which is by excavated volume, the world's largest open pit copper mine, in operation since at least 550 AD (Wikipedia). The Chuqui deposit's western boundaries are abruptly cut off, which leads some to believe that the missing western half was transported south, along fault lines, to Lowell's Ricardo property.


Chuqui in Chile. By excavated volume, the world's largest open pit copper mine.

Finding Chuqui's counterpart at Ricardo would make Lowell Copper shareholders, myself included, rich, but it's a long shot, and people have tried at Ricardo before. Rockwell Ventures, a Hunter Dickinson affiliate, was unsuccessful in drilling the property in the 1990's. "These holes were all vertical so probably missed a steep body hence there is certainly more room for a major discovery," geologist Brent Cook commented. Lowell and his team will no doubt give Ricardo its due exploration effort.

The company also owns a copper-moly deposit in out-of-favor Ecuador, called Warintza, and is continually evaluating other projects, director Marcel De Groot told us a few weeks ago.

Perhaps more important than the company's physical assets are its intellectual property. Chairman and CEO Dave Lowell has been involved with just 2 public companies before, Arequipa Resources Ltd. (acquired by Barrick Gold for approximately $1.1 billion) and Peru Copper Inc. (acquired by CHINALCO for $850 million). Lowell is credited with at least 18 major discoveries, an unparalleled track record in mining.

Lowell's latest venture is backed by billionaire resource titan Lukas Lundin among other influential investors, and a few not so special ones like us. Shares in the company will commence trading on the TSX-Venture Exchange on or around July 15th under the symbol JDL. Learn more in yesterday's press release and watch the video we made with Dave for a little inspiration:

Disclaimer: All facts to be verified by the reader. This is not investment advice.