JuniorMIning.com attended both the Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia (aka “AMEBC”) annual conference and Cambridge’s Vancouver Resource Investment Conference (aka “VRIC”) at the Vancouver Convention Centre. The VRIC was a two-day show, and overlapped the larger 4-day AMEBC conference. The two shows are quite different in that the 2-day VRIC is comprised primarily as a showcase for listed junior mining companies to promote themselves. The VRIC also hosts a series of junior mining company presentations and a number of industry speakers promoting their personal perspectives, wisdom and predictions on varied topics pertaining to the world’s mining and explorations sectors. Little comes to fruition, but this same or similar small group of speakers are perennials at each and every show. The key is to come away from each presentation with at least one keeper that will help you invest in the coming year. This particular show seemed to have more speaker presentation space than it did floor space filled with junior mining companies. There were no highlights this time around and most company representatives seemed to be spending most of their time touting those working at neighbouring booths. The only thing that caught our attention at the show was how this time around each booth displayed a sign on its front table saying “No Soliciting”. Tough times or not for the industry, we are of the opinion that many in the industry (especially the thousands of unemployed at this time) would have found this quite offensive. It is the kind of idea one would expect of someone with a very small mind.
The AMEBC was an entirely different show and much more worthy of one’s time. The Round-Up, as we in the industry refer to it, is usually much more technically oriented and dominated by government booths, suppliers and sub-trades. However to our surprise and liking, the Round-Up this year seemed to have just about as many junior mining company booths as the VRIC show – next door. It also had many booths displaying the rock samples and property maps of Prospectors from one coast of Canada to the other. It was very impressive, in this market, to see all of these enthusiastic individuals come out. They are the ones who make the initial discoveries and underpin our industry. Invariably, even in these tough times for the sector, these guys and gals lift the hearts and enthusiasm of us all. All-around, the AMEBC show was well worth attending. We spent our time introducing JuniorMining.com to this world, and we had a series of challenging questions to ask the attendees. We were engaged in many a lively discussion on a dozen or so topics. We discovered these folks have a lot to say and JuniorMining.com will be looking into many of their concerns and following up with articles for our Members over the coming weeks and months. One thing that was very noticeable was the number of people on the show floor representing the Canadian Stock Exchange which now competes head to head with the TMX Group’s TSX.V. It was quite obvious what their goal is and they were talking to all that would listen – and most were giving them the time of day.
In our usual fashion we have concluded that the VRIC was unavoidable (mostly because it was free). The AMEBC on the other hand was impressionable and very enjoyable. Now it’s off to the Prospector’s and Developers or Canada conference in Toronto this March. The PDAC Conference is Canada’s and the World’s premier mining conference. See you all there.