"With a tier 1 conference investors have the unique opportunity to make multiple meetings at once and, most importantly, sit across from the CEO of a company, look them directly in the eyes, and get a feel for what they are saying."
How will THE Mining Investment Event of the North (THE Event) differ from other mining-related conferences?
Having attended conferences and trade shows related to Canada's mining industry over many years, I knew firsthand what was missing within the sector: Canada’s own tier 1 investment conference. I saw a need for an in-person conference at a top-notch destination during which investors and issuers can meet in private settings organized by an electronic calendar. I also wanted THE Event to be independently sponsored, as bringing together a variety of groups to sponsor a conference is conducive for deal flow. Looking at the types of companies invited, it was important to me that THE Event be commodity agnostic - including precious, base and battery metals, and we will do a spotlight on energy metals including PGEs, copper and lithium.
When I introduced the idea to other people in the industry, I received resounding interest and support. I knew I had tapped into a need that was not being met by other events. Over 400 meetings have already been registered, and companies continue to ask if they can attend. We are sold out of speaker slots but can still bring in companies as tier 2, meaning that while they cannot present, they will have access to one-on-one meetings and networking opportunities.
What can attendees of the conference expect their experience to be like?
It was important to me to make the environment engaging. I refused to host yet another conference where CEOs go into tiny presentation rooms, climb up tired gray risers, and speed through 50 slides in 10 minutes. Instead, we will have a beautifully lit stage where people can have a fireside chat or conduct “THE Talk” which is a TED Talk-style presentation. THE Event will provide an unparalleled opportunity to hear executives from top companies like Rio Tinto, Hecla Mining, O3 Mining and Osisko Development engage directly to a live and participating virtual audience.
In terms of panels, the topics we selected for discussion are very timely. They include ESG Beyond Compliance and The Future of Critical Metals, Global Exploration and Discovery Trends, for example.
Where will THE Event take place?
We decided to host THE Event at the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac and the Voltigeurs du Québec Armoury in Québec City because the location will not only provide Québec-centric companies with an excellent opportunity to participate and meet investors, but will also attract a global audience to a UNESCO World Heritage Site. I believe this will spotlight the Québec mining industry while also drawing global eyes to Canadian mining. In this regard, all companies related to Canada’s mining industry are welcome. If a company is TSX listed and has assets in Brazil, that is great. If they are ASX listed and have assets in Canada, we want them to feel welcome too.
How important are in-person events after over two years of pandemic-related disruptions?
From what we are seeing, it is clear that investors have not yet returned to pre-pandemic levels of in person engagement. However, given the fact that this is our first conference, I am thrilled with the number of investors that have registered. That said, I believe that as we return more fully to traveling and Covid-related restrictions continue to drop, we will see more people coming back into the fold. While many people have become comfortable with having meetings online, there are limits to what can be done virtually. With a tier 1 conference investors have the unique opportunity to make multiple meetings at once and most importantly sit across from the CEO of a company, look them directly in the eyes, and get a feel for what they are saying. This provides a completely different experience than a Zoom call - not to mention all the networking going on between meetings and at functions.
What will THE Event look like in the future?
THE Event is already scheduled for June 19-21, 2023. Not only is Québec City stunning in June, but strategically this is also the period right before people wind down to take the summer off. In the future, we plan to undertake two mining events per year. There are also non-mining sectors that we believe are being underserved as they have not had a tier 1 conference come to their sector. We are working on expanding to those industries as well.