2017 was a frustrating year for Peter Skeat as the political trials that racked South Africa played havoc with his attempts to borrow the money he needed to get started on his latest project. And that project is the bold resurrection of the Blvyooruitzicht mine he now controls privately and has renamed Blyvoor Gold. It’s no consolation that he saw this coming when – back in 2016 – he qualified his outlook for the year ahead with the proviso that he would raise the $70m-odd he needed working through Cape Town institution Cadiz Corporation Solutions so long as there were no “... adverse political developments”. As everybody knows, there were adverse political developments aplenty and three attempts to line up the funds from foreign investors were hampered as a result. Skeat then changed his strategy by approaching the Industrial Development Corporation to sign on as an anchor domestic investor, contributing 50% of the funds needed, and approaching foreign investors for the balance. That seems to have worked, with Skeat predicting financial closure during January followed by a start to construction and first production by October/November 2018... providing all goes to plan.
LIFE OF PETER
Skeat is one of those maverick thinkers whose reputation was first founded on becoming one of the most efficient contract miners in South African mining. Despite this, Skeat’s projects have so far largely benefited other parties, most notably DRDGold, which cleaned up in the aftermath of Skeat’s failed attempt to resurrect East Rand Gold and Uranium. He has received his bumps and bruises and was a key figure in the decline and fall of the late Brett Kebble.