The Agora Financial Symposium in Vancouver gives executives and representatives from mining companies the chance to pitch their stock to potential investors.
Outside the main conference area, where around 500 attendees listen to investment and economic experts from a variety of industries and perspectives, a few mining companies talk to potential and current investors at the company exhibition booths.
Following an 18-month downdraft in the sector, many investors have tough questions for these management teams.
Rick Rule has stated that the downdraft in mining is positive in the long-term. Companies that are wasting capital because of poor management, he believes, must wash out of the sector.
I took advantage of the conference to talk with a few mining executives, and asked them if they saw the cleansing that Rick believes must occur in the sector.
“A lot of companies rushed in when they could get financings,” says Ken Cunningham, President and CEO of Miranda Gold Corp. “And many are now out of cash. These companies are technically still alive, but should soon be forced to either close their doors or be taken over.”
“These companies are no longer drilling or taking samples”, says Cunningham. Rather, they have decided to end their exploration activities so that they can maintain their salaries until the market allows them to raise money again.
“This behavior brings into question the validity of their projects, and the elimination of these types of companies should be positive for the sector”, he concludes.