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New accelerator programme gaining traction

An image of the JSE logo with an ot of focus background of people meeting at an event

NOT JUST STOCKS JSE has used its mall, medium-sized and microenterprise programme as a template for its new Junior Mining Accelerator Programme

19th May 2023

By: Halima Frost

Senior Writer

     

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Since its inception six months ago, the JSE Junior Mining Accelerator Programme, which is being codirected by Minerals Council South Africa, has already seen two emerging exploration firms being taken on by the programme.

Both emerging miners Lethabo Exploration and M Resources, being operated by young and enthusiastic entrepreneurs, have benefited from the mentorship opportunities and exposure to the JSE-run programme.

Minerals Council junior and emerging miners desk lead Grant Mitchell says the response to the programme has already been “very promising” and looks to be one of the more beneficial programmes to be offered to the sector.

“The programme has been based on the current small, medium-sized and microenterprise programme being run by the JSE, so a firm template is already in place for the operation of the junior mining programme,” he says.

In addition, the programme offers junior miners various stakeholder engagement opportunities, networking, webinars, advisory platforms as well as investment opportunities.

Mitchell points out that a key contributor to the failure or success of junior mines is the availability of viable and longstanding investment, which is needed to start and maintain operations.

“The development or services offered on a mine is not a short-term project by any means,” he says, adding that the Minerals Council opens doors for this investment to take place.

Mitchell adds that the Minerals Council hopes to recruit more of its 36 junior mining members to the programme, “all with prime talent to nurture and develop”.

Further benefits of the programme include affording junior miners the opportunity to learn more about the inner workings of the JSE and the listing process, to better equip them going forward should they eventually list themselves.

“Leadership forums and the mentorship opportunities offer even further growth and development opportunities,” he points out.

Mitchell explains that a JSE approved mentor is allocated to each company, to help guide the junior miner where process, procedure and protocols might normally “trip one up”.

A junior miner will often not be privy to all aspects of the various application processes which are required, including environmental, social and governance obligations, bureaucratic legislation and operational health and safety standards that need to be met.

“There is also the option for our junior members to access the Minerals Council mentorship programme where senior executives from our large members can support emerging mining companies who may be unsure of the legalities of their operations,” he says.

Mitchell concludes that the JSE Junior Mining Accelerator programme, although in its infancy, holds great potential to fast-track the development of junior mining in South Africa.

Edited by Donna Slater
Features Deputy Editor and Chief Photographer

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