Ross Beaty, chairman of Pan American Silver, joins Real Vision co-founder Grant Williams to discuss his experience building a successful silver company. This video is excerpted from a piece published on Real Vision on September 21, 2018 entitled “Grant Williams in Conversation with Ross Beaty.”
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Success and Failure: Timing the Precious Metals Cycles (w/ Ross Beaty)
For the full transcript visit: https://rvtv.io/2KfrsZn
ROSS BEATY: In '94, when I started this, silver was trading for about $5 an ounce, give or take.
Well, I was positive. The more I read, the more it was positive silver was going to go up to $10
by the end of the decade. Needless to say, the end of the decade, silver is $4 an ounce.
I've had a couple of flops out of 14 or 15 now. Not entirely flops, because they were all-- well, in
fact, only one. And that one is still a work in progress.
GRANT WILLIAMS: Well, let's talk about the flop. Let's talk about that, because it's so easy to
fail in mining. It's so easy. There are so many things, and most of them are outside your control.
It's nature, for a start. But then you throw in permitting and changes of government.
There are so many things that can go wrong. It's such a tough landing the stick. So how was this
one a flop?
ROSS BEATY: My very first company was Equinox Resources. I've talked about that a little bit.
And this one gold deposit that we discovered in Nevada that we finally-- another company
discovered-- it turned out not to be big enough for that company. So I was able to buy it 100%. I
bought it back.
A year later, the gold price took off. I funded the purchase. Not by selling shares, but I sold a
little royalty to Franco-Nevada, to Pierre Lassonde. And that funded me buying the other half for
about $3 million. One year later, I sold the whole company for $110 million. Just because the
gold price had taken off, this particular company needed a deposit like that, and it was a chance
for me to finally make a buck.
GRANT WILLIAMS: But that's the reward. We talk about the risk/reward. That's the kind of...
ROSS BEATY: So I spent nine years building this company. Haven't taken a penny out.
Everything I'd made, I'd reinvest it buying more and more shares. And finally, I got this happy
ending. And it was pretty cool because I was able to say, OK, that company is so full of baggage
and problems and hassle, I just want to say, over to you, you can have it, and start from ground
But I had happy shareholders, because the last trading day with an all-time high. And so those
shareholders, god bless them, a lot were Americans. A lot of them were Canadians. They were
people who had followed me. Newsletter writers-- Bob Bishop. Rick Rule was a big part of that.
All kinds of great, great friends, and people who really helped me build this company. They'd all
been vindicated for supporting me.
Well, the company that bought Equinox was Hecla. Hecla at that time was known as a silver
company. Even today, it still is, but it shouldn't be. It's mostly a gold company. And even then it
wasn't. Only about 17% of its revenue came from silver.
So I looked at Hecla and Coeur d'Alene and Sunshine. None of them. They were all trading with
the silver price, but none of them were real silver companies. They were other things.