Australian ruby miner Mustang Resources says it has adopted a new sales and marketing strategy that reflects “the exploration and developmental status” of its Montepuez Ruby Project in Mozambique.
In a cautionary notice issued to shareholders on March 6, Mustang Managing Director Bernard Olivier said the company has closed its marketing office in Mauritius and moved closer to global gemstone market by setting up a new one in Thailand.
The announcement is the culmination of a marketing strategy review exercise that followed the hosting of a hugely disappointing ruby auction sale in Mauritius in November last year.
Mustang hoped to raise US$7 million, but realised only US$713 456 after most buyers expressed disappointment over the poor quality gem products offered.
“In light of the review strategy findings, Mustang has decided to close its sales office in Mauritius. The facility was designed to enable Mustang to undertake large-scale auctions. However, given Mustang’s current production levels, they are no longer considered suitable. Mustang has now established its sales and marketing office in Chanthaburi, Thailand.
“This facility is markedly smaller, of lower-cost than that in Mauritius and more in line with the company’s emphasis on ruby market development and continuing market research. Thailand is considered a world-leader in trading and beneficiation of coloured gemstones, especially rubies and sapphires,” Olivier said.
In line with the new marketing strategy, Mustang’s entire 333 184 carat ruby inventory has been moved to Thailand from storage facilities in Mauritius and Mozambique for re-parcelling and sale.
The Thailand office will oversee the heating, cutting and marketing of rubies to generate regular cash flows and support further exploration and bulk sampling activities at the Montepuez Project.
The next exploration phase also seeks to establish the maiden ruby resource, which will then be assessed in conjunction with market intelligence gathered from sales activities to determine the long term economic viability of the Montepuez Ruby Project.