Envision Solar Receives Purchase Order

SAN DIEGO, CA—(Marketwired – March 30, 2017) – Envision Solar International, Inc., (OTCQB: EVSI) (“Envision Solar,” or the “Company”), the leading renewably energized EV charging, outdoor media and energy security products company, announced today that a leading Southern California university has issued a Purchase Order for the Company's EV ARC™ product. Due to internal university policy, the name and location of the university cannot be revealed.

The EV ARC™ stations will be deployed in 2 separate pubic parking lots on campus and will provide free solar electric vehicle (EV) charging for students, faculty, staff and guests. With Envision Solar having already deployed EV ARC™ for the California State University School System, this will be the second university within California to deploy EV ARC™ and the first university to deploy EV ARC™ in a public EV charging scenario.

“Electric vehicle charging is quickly becoming an essential piece of infrastructure on college campuses,” said Desmond Wheatley, CEO of Envision Solar. “We're ecstatic to work with such a prestigious university and applaud their forward–thinking vision to have EVs on campus driving on nothing but sunshine.”

Invented and manufactured in California, the EV ARC™ fits inside a parking space and does not reduce available parking in any way. It generates and stores enough clean, solar electricity to charge up to 225 miles of EV driving in a day. The energy is stored in the EV ARC™ product's energy storage for charging day or night or for use by first responders or others during grid outages. Because the EV ARC™ product requires no trenching, foundations or installation work of any kind, it is deployed in minutes and can be moved to a new location with ease. EV ARC™ products are manufactured in the Company's San Diego facility by combat veterans, the disabled, minorities and other highly talented, mission driven team members.

About Envision Solar International, Inc.

Envision Solar, www.envisionsolar.com, is a sustainable technology innovation company who's unique and patented products include the EV ARC™ and the Solar Tree® with EnvisionTrak™ patented solar tracking, SunCharge™ solar Electric Vehicle Charging, ARC™ technology energy storage and EnvisionMedia solar advertising displays.

Based in San Diego the company produces Made in America products. Envision Solar is listed on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol [EVSI]. For more information, visit www.envisionsolar.com or call (866) 746–0514.

Forward–Looking Statements

This Press Release may contain forward–looking statements regarding future events or our expected future results that are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties. All statements in this Report other than statements of historical facts are forward looking statements. Forward looking statements are generally accompanied by terms or phrases such as “estimate,” “project,” “predict,” “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “target,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “goal,” “will,” “should,” “may,” or other words and similar expressions that convey the uncertainty of future events or results. Statements contemplating or making assumptions regarding actual or potential sales, market size and demand, prospective business contracts, customer orders, trends or operating results also constitute forward looking statements. Our actual results may differ substantially from those indicated in forward looking statements because our business is subject to significant economic, competitive, regulatory, business and industry risks which are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond our control. Our operating results, financial condition and business performance may be adversely affected by a general decline in the economy, unavailability of capital or financing for our prospective customers to purchase products and services from us, competition, changes in regulations, a decline in the demand for solar energy, a lack of profitability, a decline in our stock price, and other risks. We may not have adequate capital, financing or cash flow to sustain our business or implement our business plans. Current results and trends are not necessarily indicative of future results that we may achieve.

Two UN Experts Found Dead in DRC, Search Continues for Interpreter, Drivers

The UN flag flying half-mast. Credit: UN Photo/Mark Garten

The UN flag flying half-mast. Credit: UN Photo/Mark Garten

By Tharanga Yakupitiyage
UNITED NATIONS, Mar 30 2017 (IPS)

The bodies of two UN experts have been found in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) two weeks after their team went missing.

Among the remains found were American Michael Sharp and Swede Zaida Catalan who were members of the U.N. Group of Experts which reports to the Security Council on the Congolese conflict, arms trafficking, rights abuses, and crimes against humanity. The two experts along with their interpreter and 3 drivers went missing on 12 March while investigating violence and alleged human rights abuses outside of the city of Kananga in the Kasai-Central province.

Secretary-General António Guterres said that he was “deeply saddened” by the events, stating: “Michael and Zaida lost their lives seeking to understand the causes of conflict and insecurity in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in order to help bring peace to the country and its people.”

DRC has been marred by insecurity since 1994 when the Rwandan genocide and an influx of refugees plunged the country into the deadliest conflict in African history, killing almost 5 million civilians. 

Though the country declared peace in 2003, there has been a resurgence in violence in recent months. According to Human Rights Watch, protests erupted across the country when President Joseph Kabila stayed in power despite the end of his constitutionally mandated two-term limit in December 2016. 

Government security forces have since repressed opponents, allegedly killing over 50 people and jailing hundreds of opposition leaders and supporters. 

Meanwhile, clashes between government forces and local militias escalated in various parts of the country, including in the Kasai region which has experienced some of the worst violence. 

Over 400 people have been killed and 200,000 displaced from their homes in the Kasai region since August. Security forces have purportedly used excessive force, “unnecessarily firing” on alleged militia members including women and children, said Human Rights Watch. Two dozen mass graves have also been reported.

While speaking to the Council on Foreign Relations, U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley expressed concerns over the country’s violence and human rights violations, stating that the Congolese government is “corrupt” and “preys on its citizens.” 

“The UN peacekeeping mission…is aiding a government that is inflicting predatory behavior against its own people. We should have the decency and common sense to end this,” she continued. 

The Congolese government has reportedly blamed the UN team’s deaths on the Kamuina Nsapu, a local insurgent group that has clashed with government forces since its leader was killed six months ago. 

DRC government spokesperson Lambert Mende stated that the remains of Congolese interpreter Betu Tshintela was also found alongside Sharp and Catalan. Three other local staff still remain missing, including the team’s driver Isaac Kabuayi.

“The search is ongoing,” UN deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq told IPS regarding the missing personnel.  

Secretary-General also called on a thorough examination on the deaths of the UN experts. “The United Nations will do everything possible to ensure that justice is done,” he stated. 

Amnesty International’s Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes Muthoni Wanyeki called on the DRC government to also conduct investigations, stating that the deaths should serve as a “reminder of the urgent need to end the violence in Kasai Province.” 

Human Rights Watch highlighted the need to ensure the implementation of a Catholic Church-mediated agreement signed at the end of 2016 which includes a clear commitment that President Kabila will not seek a third term and that presidential elections will be held before the end of 2017. 

“The [Human Rights Council’s] engagement now is critical to help protect civilians from further violence, press for accountability for serious abuses, and ensure that timely, credible elections are held to build a more democratic and rights-respecting country,” the organisation said. 

Sharp, 34, had been in the DRC for five years, first working as the Eastern Congo Coordinator for the Mennonite Central Committee. 

Catalan, 36, was a Swedish politician for the Green Party and later worked in the West Bank and Afghanistan prior to joining the UN Group of Experts.

Royal Neighbors CEO Cynthia Tidwell shares success secrets of 122-year-old business

ROCK ISLAND, IL—(Marketwired – March 24, 2017) – In an era when the average age of a business is 15 years old1, Cynthia Tidwell is proud to serve as President/CEO of Royal Neighbors of America, a women–led life insurer celebrating its 122nd year in business.

Ms. Tidwell shares some of the secrets that have helped her organization stand the test of time.

Embrace innovation and change.
“Royal Neighbors was founded in 1895 by nine progressive women,” she says. “Because it was a time of limited opportunities for women, THEY were considered the innovation.” Today, technology is, of course, the area where many companies look for innovation. It is an enabler. But, it's important to look at all facets of the operation, from products and logistics to processes, business models, and customer needs. “I encourage leaders to be observant, challenge the status quo, and encourage feedback from employees throughout the entire company, not just a chosen few at the top. From diversity of thought comes new ideas. Embrace change because it is the only thing you can count on!”

Give back.
Giving back is imperative. It isn't just good business, it goes to the heart of a company. “Today more than ever, people want to do business with companies that do good,” says Ms. Tidwell. “As a membership organization, our philosophy of neighbor–helping–neighbor has been part of our DNA since we were founded, so this is not new to us. We channel some of our earnings back to programs that benefit our members and their communities. We continue to thrive because our members appreciate and respect socially conscious and value–based companies.”

Listen.
When you hear from your customers, listen! They may not always know what they want, but they can tell you their needs — or what is not working for them today. And meeting their needs is your most important bottom line. Don't forget your employees. They are in the trenches with customers so pay attention to their thoughts and ideas. “I hold what I call 'coffee connections' with our employees. We talk about what they like, what they don't like, and what they would change about what we are doing. And also we have town hall meetings to keep employees up to date on the organization's progress, both our business and philanthropy results.”

Have a plan and align everyone around you.
“I spend much of my time on alignment…everyone rowing in the same direction with a common understanding of what we are trying to accomplish,” says Ms. Tidwell. Most companies have long– and short–term strategic plans and goals, but a key is to recognize when those plans and goals need to be revised or when you need to pivot. Be proactive if you notice the tide is beginning to turn. Changes in the economy, a wave of new technology, and infrastructure challenges can necessitate a change in thinking. Track trends and stay on top of not only your industry, but others that may intersect with yours. Stay alert and responsive.

Place the right people in the right job doing the right things…right now!
If you have valuable employees who are struggling, it may be because they are in the wrong position. Take the time to learn about their strengths and determine if there is a better job that will utilize their skills to meet both the employees' and company's needs. “Teamwork and multi–dimensional employees are important today. At Royal Neighbors, we develop cross–functional teams so employees can appreciate others' work and understand how all the pieces of the organization come together,” shared Ms. Tidwell.

Ms. Tidwell, (http://www.royalneighbors.org/how–we–are–different/in–the–news/2015/07/24/royal–neighbors'–cynthia–tidwell–shares–career–advice–in–business–insider) who was featured in Business Insider for her career advice along with 24 other “super–successful” people, also offers the following tips for business leaders and employees who want to achieve long–lasting success in their careers:

  • Stay true to your core values. Your integrity is everything.
  • Take care of the most important things. Everything else will fall into place.
  • Take risks.
  • Believe in people.
  • Give back both personally and professionally.

About Royal Neighbors

Royal Neighbors of America, one of the nation's largest women–led life insurers, empowers women to meet the needs of their families with annuities and life insurance products such as whole life, term, simplified issue, and universal life. Royal Neighbors was founded in 1895 and is headquartered in Rock Island, IL, with a branch office in Mesa, AZ. For more information, visit www.royalneighbors.org or call (800) 627–4762.

[1] Staying in Business Forever: How To Create A 100–Year Company, Forbes, David K. Williams, April 10, 2013, online article, https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidkwilliams/2013/04/10/staying–in–business–forever–how–to–create–a–100–year–company/#85adf132d83b PDF on file. If you cannot access this article on–line, you may call (309) 732–8260 to request a copy.

W2017–3; Rev. 3–2017

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Excellon Reports 2016 Annual and Fourth Quarter Financial Results and Update on Optimization Plan

TORONTO, ON—(Marketwired – March 23, 2017) – Excellon Resources Inc. (TSX: EXN) (TSX: EXN.WT) (OTC: EXLLF) (“Excellon” or the “Company”) is pleased to report on corporate, operational and financial results for the three– and twelve–month periods ended December 31, 2016 and provide an update on the ongoing optimization plan (as further described below, the “Optimization Plan”) at the Company's Platosa Mine in Durango, Mexico.

2016 Corporate and Operational Highlights

  • Advanced implementation of optimization plan at Platosa, with aim of doubling productivity and halving costs during 2017 — optimization plan in final implementation phase, with dry mining conditions expected during Q2 2017
  • Successful financings provided capital for optimization plan and $5 million exploration program at Platosa and addition of key new shareholder, Eric Sprott
  • Closed sale of DeSantis Property in Timmins, Ontario in Q2 2016 for shares of Osisko Mining Corporation that have gained +300% since closing of the transaction
  • Key exploration results near mine infrastructure include 13 metres of 662 g/t Ag, 4.9% Pb, 25.5% Zn and 0.57 g/t Au and 3 metres of 795 g/t Ag, 9.25% Pb and 25.85% Zn
  • Positive initial court resolution from Agrarian Tribunal of litigation with the Ejido La Sierrita
  • Negotiated improved offtake terms for 2017 with approximately 60% reduction in treatment and refining charges
  • Addition of key expertise to management team with appointment of Vice President Technical Services, Denis Flood, Vice President Geology, Ben Pullinger, and Vice President Corporate Responsibility, Dr. Craig Ford
  • Addition of highly–regarded board appointees, Dr. Laurie Curtis and Daniella Dimitrov

2016 Financial Highlights

  • Revenue of $17.0 million (2015 – $16.2 million)
  • Production of 1.3 million silver equivalent (“AgEq”) ounces (2015 – 1.4 million AgEq ounces)
  • Sales of 1.1 million AgEq ounces payable (2015 – 1.3 million AgEq ounces payable)
  • Mine operating earnings of $0.7 million (2015 – loss of $2.5 million)
  • Approximately 83% of tonnage mined during 2016 was from outside mineral resources, resulting in minimal depletion of Platosa mineral resources during the year
  • Adjusted net loss of $3.4 million or $0.05/share (2015 – adjusted net loss of $4.0 million or $0.07/share), excluding non–cash financing costs associated with outstanding convertible debentures (the “Debentures”) issued in November 2015
  • Cash, current accounts receivable and marketable securities totaled $7.7 million at December 31, 2016 (December 31, 2015 – $4.0 million)
  • Net working capital totaled $8.6 million at December 30, 2016 (December 31, 2015 – $5.5 million)

“We laid the foundations in 2016 for a significant transition in Excellon's fortunes over the course of 2017,” stated Brendan Cahill, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We materially advanced and are now near completion of our optimization plan at Platosa, which has already proven effective and promises to improve mine production and costs during the latter half of 2017, with dry mining conditions at Platosa expected to be achieved finally during Q2 2017. We expect to have an update on drawdown rates in the near term as more data are collected. Production during 2016, though certainly below mine potential, only minimally depleted Platosa mineral resources, leaving more high–grade resources to mine at higher–rates and lower costs under dry mining conditions in the coming years. Additionally, our resumption of exploration at Platosa has delivered high–grade and near–term accessible mineralization. We plan to move further afield in the coming quarters, including resumption of exploration for skarn– Source/CRD mineralization. Most importantly, however, we have added exceptional new people to our team and look forward to fully drawing on their experience going forward to improve our performance.”

Update on Optimization Plan

The Company is pleased to provide an update on the ongoing optimization program at Platosa. As further described in the Company's annual information form (the “AIF”), the Company has developed an optimization program to more effectively dewater Platosa through an enhanced well–pumping system. The optimization program will maintain and increase a localized “cone of depression” of the water table around mine workings, ultimately resulting in dry mining conditions at Platosa. Under dry mining conditions, the Company expects to achieve higher rates of production at lower costs relative to current and historical production at Platosa. Refer to the AIF for a summary estimates on Platosa production rates and costs subsequent to the completion of the optimization program.

In December 2016, the Company completed the installation and testing of the primary booster station (comprising four 600hp pumps) in Guadalupe South. The Company also installed two additional 250hp submersible pumps in Guadalupe South. The initial results from these wells exceeded expectations, with the drawdown over the first week in excess of one metre. During Q1 2017, the Company completed well drilling and focused on advancing well cleaning and installing submersibles as wells were prepared. The well–cleaning process has proven effective and is essential to the project's long–term success. All submersibles have been delivered and are ready to be installed as wells are cleaned and the installation of the secondary booster station is nearing completion. The Company currently expects to reach 25,000 gpm pumping by mid–April, effectively reaching the Optimization Plan's long–term target. Additional submersible installations will be completed during Q2 to further enhance pumping rates.

Financial Results

Financial results for the three– and twelve–month periods ended December 31, 2016 and 2015 were as follows:

                 
('000s of USD, except amounts per share and per ounce)   Q4 2016   Q4 2015   2016   2015
Revenue (1)   3,354   2,477   16,994   16,167
Production costs   (3,620)   (3,318)   (13,906)   (15,611)
Depletion and amortization   (696)   (675)   (2,435)   (3,080)
Cost of sales   (4,316)   (3,993)   (16,341)   (18,691)
Gross profit (loss)   (961)   (1,516)   653   (2,524)
 
Corporate administration   (1,214)   (976)   (3,477)   (3,309)
Exploration   (809)   (123)   (1,345)   (685)
Other   (1,112)   424   (971)   (354)
Impairment of mineral rights     (662)   156   (662)
Royalty Income     726     726
Net finance cost   2,367   (381)   (11,288)   (446)
Income tax recovery   1,674   831   2,201   2,214
Net loss   (55)   (1,677)   (14,071)   (5,040)
Adjusted net loss (2) (3)   (2,489)   (676)   (3,408)   (4,039)
Loss per share – basic   (0.00)   (0.03)   (0.21)   (0.09)
Adjusted profit/loss per share – basic   (0.03)   (0.01)   (0.05)   (0.07)
 
Cash flow from (used in) operations (4)   (3,147)   (1,492)   (3,291)   (1,867)
Cash flow from (used in) operations per share – basic   (0.04)   (0.03)   (0.05)   (0.03)
 
Production cost per tonne (5)   251   255   250   275
Cash cost per payable silver ounce ($/Ag oz)   18.48   19.86   13.42   15.11
All–in sustaining cost (“AISC”) per silver ounce payable ($/Ag oz)   71.17   34.92   33.04   22.58
Adjusted AISC per silver once payable (6)   48.49   34.92   25.82   22.58
                 
(1)   Revenues are net of treatment and refining charges.
(2)   Adjusted net losses reflect results before fair value adjustments on embedded derivatives and warrants related to the Debentures (as defined below) (Q4 2016 – $2.4 million gain; Q4 2015 – $0.3 million loss; 2016 – $10.8 million loss, 2015 – $0.3 million loss). The fair value adjustment derives from the performance of the Company's stock during each period (Q4 2016 – $1.88 to $1.64; 2016 – $0.31 to $1.64; Q4 2015 and 2015 – $0.25 at inception to $0.31), resulting in variances in valuation/cost upon the potential conversion or exercise of the debentures or warrants, respectively.
(3)   Adjusted net loss for Q4 2015 and 2015 reflects results before $0.7 million impairment charge on DeSantis exploration property in Canada that was subsequently sold in 2016.
(4)   Cash flow from operations before changes in working capital.
(5)   Production cost per tonne includes mining and milling costs excluding depletion and amortization.
(6)   Adjusted AISC per payable silver ounce excludes the relatively one–time sustaining capital expenditures associated with the “Platosa Optimization Plan” described below (associated cash expenditures were $2.8 million in Q4 2016 and $4.8 million in 2016).
     

As in recent years, 2016 production at Platosa was impacted by water inflows, which prevented access to certain zones included in the mine plan. Consequently, available mineralization was mined in historical remnant areas and in newly identified mineralization outside of the Platosa mineral resource block model. Though the deposit is tightly drilled at 15 metre centres, manto boundaries are generally erratic and additional mineralization is often encountered outside of the resource block model. During the year, approximately 83% of produced tonnes were mined from outside the resource block model, with the predominance of tonnage mined from the Rodilla area (41,800 tonnes, with 8,700 tonnes mined from within the Rodilla resource block model), resulting in minimal depletion of mineral resources at Platosa during the year. Mineralization mined from outside the block model tended to be more erratic and thus subject to higher dilution than planned, resulting in lower grades than set out in the Company's mine plans for 2016. The Company expects grades to increase and mine planning to be more in line with expectations and historical trends when the Optimization Plan becomes fully effective during Q2 2017.

Production costs in 2016 of $13.9 million were reduced by $1.7 million relative to 2015, while producing similar tonnage, a reflection of the continuous cost reductions at the operation. Cost per tonne of $250/t in 2016 improved from $275/t in 2015. Approximately 15% of these cost savings relate to beneficial movements in the exchange rate for the Mexican peso, while the other 85% derived from management's efforts to reduce and more effectively manage costs.

During Q4 2016, the Company generated higher net revenues of $3.3 million (Q4 2015 – $2.5 million) due to higher silver equivalent payable ounces of 241,867 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – 230,270 AgEq ounces) resulting from higher lead and zinc prices. Revenue of $17.0 million in 2016 improved by 5% (2015 – $16.2 million) despite a 12% decrease in silver ounces payable of 1,133,789 due to lower grades produced and higher realized silver prices of $17.38 (2015 – $15.15).

The Company recorded a net loss of $55,000 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – net loss of $1.7 million). The Company's adjusted net loss of $2.5 million in Q4 2016 reflects the period's results before recording a $2.4 million fair value adjustment gain on embedded derivative and warrants relating to the Debentures in accordance with IFRS (Q4 2015 – $0.7 million). For 2016, the Company recorded a net loss of $14.1 million (2015 – net loss of $5.0 million). The Company's adjusted net loss for 2016 was $3.4 million before (i) a $10.8 million fair value adjustment loss on embedded derivative and warrants related to the debentures and (ii) a $0.2 million reversal of impairment on the DeSantis exploration property sold in the period (2015 – $4 million).

General and administrative expenses of $1.2 million in Q4 2016 increased by 24% compared to Q4 2015, primarily resulting from increased marketing, hiring of new officers, appointing new directors and additional vesting of stock based compensation during the quarter. Cash corporate administrative expenses of $0.8 million in Q4 2016 remained comparable to Q4 2015 of $0.7 million. For the year, general and administrative expense of $3.5 million was comparable to $3.3 million in 2015, with cash expenditures being $2.5 million compared to $2.4 million in 2015. The Company continues to maintain cost discipline at the corporate head office in Toronto.

The Company spent $0.8 million in exploration in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – $0.1 million) as it continued its surface drill program at Platosa, with an additional 2,500 metre drilled in the quarter for a total of 3,500 metres drilled in 2016. Drilling will continue to focus on expanding the current footprint of manto mineralization at Platosa as part of an ongoing 25,000 metre drilling program. Overall, exploration cost for 2016 was $1.3 million (2015 – $0.7 million).

In 2016, the Company invested $8.2 million in capital expenditures, with $4.8 million spent in capital expenditures for the Optimization Plan and the remaining $3.4 million spent on other sustaining capital expenditures, including $0.9 million on two new scoop trams, $0.5 million on a new jumbo and increased mine development of $1.3 million. As the Optimization Plan continues to move towards completion in 2017, a continuous review of capital expenditure programs ensures the Company's capital resources are utilized in a responsible and sustainable manner to conserve cash in advance of a return to positive cash flow at Platosa.

Cash costs net of byproducts (or Total Cash Costs) of $9.0 million in 2016 (2015 – $10.9 million) represented an 18% improvement from 2015. Despite lower silver production in 2016, total cash cost per silver ounce payable was $13.42/ounce compared to $15.11/ounce in 2015. The Company expects total cash costs net of by–product revenues to vary from period to period as planned production and development accesses different areas of the mine with different ore grades and characteristics, with material improvements expected as the Optimization Plan takes effect.

The Company's adjusted AISC per silver ounce payable of $48.49 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – $34.92), resulted entirely from lower metal grades and, consequently, metal produced, along with the resumption of exploration drilling at Platosa. Non–adjusted AISC of $71.17 per silver ounce payable in Q4 2016 (Q4 2016 – $34.92) included significant one–time capital and development costs associated with the Optimization Plan, primarily relating to the purchase of pumping equipment, along with well–drilling costs. In 2016, the Company had an AISC of $33.04 per silver ounce payable and an adjusted AISC of $25.82 per silver ounce payable, excluding the one–time costs associated with the Optimization Plan.

Excellon defines AISC per silver ounce as the sum of total cash costs (including treatment charges and net of byproduct credits), capital expenditures that are sustaining in nature, corporate general and administrative costs (including non–cash share–based compensation), capitalized and expensed exploration that is sustaining in nature, and (non–cash) environmental reclamation costs, all divided by the total payable silver ounces sold during the period to arrive at a per ounce figure.

All financial information is prepared in accordance with IFRS, and all dollar amounts are expressed in U.S. dollars unless otherwise specified. The information in this news release should be read in conjunction with the Company's audited consolidated financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2016 and associated management discussion and analysis (“MD&A”) which are available from the Company's website at www.excellonresources.com and under the Company's profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

The discussion of financial results in this press release includes reference to “cash flows from operations before changes in working capital items”, “cash cost per silver ounce payable”, “all–in sustaining cost per payable silver equivalent ounce”, “adjusted all–in sustaining cost per silver ounce payable” and “adjusted net income” which are non–IFRS performance measures. The Company presents these measures to provide additional information regarding the Company's financial results and performance. Please refer to the Company's MD&A for the year ended December 31, 2016, for a reconciliation of these measures to reported IFRS results.

Production Highlights

Mine production for the periods indicated below were as follows:

        Q4   Q4   12–Mos   12–Mos
        2016(1)   2015(1)   2016(1)   2015(1)
Tonnes of ore produced   15,320   13,145   53,234   54,485
Tonnes of ore processed   14,417   12,999   55,593   56,849
Ore grades:                    
    Silver (g/t)   375   406   456   491
    Lead (%)   3.52   3.65   4.40   4.56
    Zinc (%)   4.80   5.33   5.70   7.20
Recoveries:                
    Silver (%)   90.0   88.9   90.5   89.0
    Lead (%)   81.1   79.8   82.1   77.7
    Zinc (%)   81.3   81.3   80.1   81.6
Production:                
    Silver – (oz)   159,524   152,628   752,689   794,289
    Silver equivalent ounces (oz) (2)   305,934   259,885   1,293,815   1,429,539
    Lead – (lb)   903,763   837,903   4,427,300   4,387,358
    Zinc – (lb)   1,248,022   1,261,072   5,581,060   7,362,938
Payable: (3)                
    Silver ounces – (oz)   126,773   135,928   668,181   721,067
    Silver equivalent ounces (oz) (2)   241,867   230,270   1,133,789   1,287,018
    Lead – (lb)   740,812   780,634   4,092,790   4,212,843
    Zinc – (lb)   955,415   1,061,270   4,602,386   6,274,379
                     
Realized prices: (4)    Silver – ($US/oz)     16.70    13.95    17.38    15.15
    Lead – ($US/lb)     1.03    0.75    0.85    0.79
    Zinc – ($US/lb)     1.22    0.69    0.98    0.83
                     
(1)   Period deliveries remain subject to assay and price adjustments on final settlement with concentrate purchaser. Data has been adjusted to reflect final assay and price adjustments for prior period deliveries settled during the period.
(2)   Silver equivalent ounces established using average realized metal prices during the period indicated applied to the recovered metal content of the concentrates.
(3)   Payable metal is based on the metals shipped and sold during the period and may differ from production due to these reasons.
(4)   Average realized price is calculated on current period sale deliveries and does not include the impact of prior period provisional adjustments in the period.
     

Tonnage mined in Q4 2016 of 15,320 tonnes represented a 17% increase from the previous quarter, with milling of 14,417 tonnes in the quarter, reflecting an 11% improvement from Q4 2015. For 2016, tonnes mined and milled of 53,234 tonnes and 55,593 tonnes were comparable to 2015. Development continues to be a priority to access the higher–grade areas of the mine including the 623 Manto, hosting mineral resources of 83,000 tonnes at 1,232 g/t Ag (1,777 g/t AgEq).

Annual General Meeting

The annual and special meeting (the “Meeting”) of Excellon shareholders will be held at 4:00 p.m. (ET) on May 10, 2017 at the King Edward Hotel (Kensington Room), 37 King Street East, Toronto, Ontario. Shareholders as of March 24, 2017 will be entitled to attend and vote their shares at the Meeting. The Management Information Circular and materials related to the Meeting will be available on the Company website and SEDAR in the coming days pursuant to Notice and Access rules.

Qualified Person

Mr. Ben Pullinger, P. Geo, Vice–President Geology, has acted as the Qualified Person, as defined in NI 43– 101, with respect to the disclosure of the scientific and technical information relating to exploration results contained in this press release.

Michael Verreault, Ing., has acted as a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43–101 for disclosure in respect of the Optimization Plan in this release. Mr. Verreault has a Masters in Applied Science (Hydrogeology) and 15 years of relevant experience focused on hydrogeology. He is a certified professional engineer (OIQ 125243) by the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec and is President of Hydro– Ressources Inc. Mr. Verreault is independent of the Company and visited Platosa several times during the preparation and ongoing implementation of the Optimization Plan referenced herein.

About Excellon

Excellon's 100%–owned Platosa Mine in Durango has been Mexico's highest–grade silver mine since production commenced in 2005. The Company is focused on optimizing the Platosa Mine's cost and production profile, discovering further high–grade silver and carbonate replacement deposit (CRD) mineralization on the Platosa Project and capitalizing on the opportunity in current market conditions to acquire undervalued projects in Latin America.

Additional details on the La Platosa Mine and the rest of Excellon's exploration properties are available at www.excellonresources.com.

Forward–Looking Statements

The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of the content of this Press Release, which has been prepared by management. This press release contains forward–looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 27E of the Exchange Act. Such statements include, without limitation, statements regarding the future results of operations, performance and achievements of the Company, including potential property acquisitions, the timing, content, cost and results of proposed work programs, the discovery and delineation of mineral deposits/resources/reserves, geological interpretations, proposed production rates, potential mineral recovery processes and rates, business and financing plans, business trends and future operating revenues. Although the Company believes that such statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward– looking statements are typically identified by words such as: believe, expect, anticipate, intend, estimate, postulate and similar expressions, or are those, which, by their nature, refer to future events. The Company cautions investors that any forward–looking statements by the Company are not guarantees of future results or performance, and that actual results may differ materially from those in forward looking statements as a result of various factors, including, but not limited to, variations in the nature, quality and quantity of any mineral deposits that may be located, significant downward variations in the market price of any minerals produced [particularly silver], the Company's inability to obtain any necessary permits, consents or authorizations required for its activities, to produce minerals from its properties successfully or profitably, to continue its projected growth, to raise the necessary capital or to be fully able to implement its business strategies. All of the Company's public disclosure filings may be accessed via www.sedar.com and readers are urged to review these materials, including the technical reports filed with respect to the Company's mineral properties, and particularly the July 9, 2015 NI 43–101–compliant technical report prepared by Roscoe Postle Associates Inc. with respect to the Platosa Property. This press release is not, and is not to be construed in any way as, an offer to buy or sell securities in the United States.

Excellon Reports 2016 Annual and Fourth Quarter Financial Results and Update on Optimization Plan

TORONTO, ON—(Marketwired – March 23, 2017) – Excellon Resources Inc. (TSX: EXN) (TSX: EXN.WT) (OTC: EXLLF) (“Excellon” or the “Company”) is pleased to report on corporate, operational and financial results for the three– and twelve–month periods ended December 31, 2016 and provide an update on the ongoing optimization plan (as further described below, the “Optimization Plan”) at the Company's Platosa Mine in Durango, Mexico.

2016 Corporate and Operational Highlights

  • Advanced implementation of optimization plan at Platosa, with aim of doubling productivity and halving costs during 2017 — optimization plan in final implementation phase, with dry mining conditions expected during Q2 2017
  • Successful financings provided capital for optimization plan and $5 million exploration program at Platosa and addition of key new shareholder, Eric Sprott
  • Closed sale of DeSantis Property in Timmins, Ontario in Q2 2016 for shares of Osisko Mining Corporation that have gained +300% since closing of the transaction
  • Key exploration results near mine infrastructure include 13 metres of 662 g/t Ag, 4.9% Pb, 25.5% Zn and 0.57 g/t Au and 3 metres of 795 g/t Ag, 9.25% Pb and 25.85% Zn
  • Positive initial court resolution from Agrarian Tribunal of litigation with the Ejido La Sierrita
  • Negotiated improved offtake terms for 2017 with approximately 60% reduction in treatment and refining charges
  • Addition of key expertise to management team with appointment of Vice President Technical Services, Denis Flood, Vice President Geology, Ben Pullinger, and Vice President Corporate Responsibility, Dr. Craig Ford
  • Addition of highly–regarded board appointees, Dr. Laurie Curtis and Daniella Dimitrov

2016 Financial Highlights

  • Revenue of $17.0 million (2015 – $16.2 million)
  • Production of 1.3 million silver equivalent (“AgEq”) ounces (2015 – 1.4 million AgEq ounces)
  • Sales of 1.1 million AgEq ounces payable (2015 – 1.3 million AgEq ounces payable)
  • Mine operating earnings of $0.7 million (2015 – loss of $2.5 million)
  • Approximately 83% of tonnage mined during 2016 was from outside mineral resources, resulting in minimal depletion of Platosa mineral resources during the year
  • Adjusted net loss of $3.4 million or $0.05/share (2015 – adjusted net loss of $4.0 million or $0.07/share), excluding non–cash financing costs associated with outstanding convertible debentures (the “Debentures”) issued in November 2015
  • Cash, current accounts receivable and marketable securities totaled $7.7 million at December 31, 2016 (December 31, 2015 – $4.0 million)
  • Net working capital totaled $8.6 million at December 30, 2016 (December 31, 2015 – $5.5 million)

“We laid the foundations in 2016 for a significant transition in Excellon's fortunes over the course of 2017,” stated Brendan Cahill, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We materially advanced and are now near completion of our optimization plan at Platosa, which has already proven effective and promises to improve mine production and costs during the latter half of 2017, with dry mining conditions at Platosa expected to be achieved finally during Q2 2017. We expect to have an update on drawdown rates in the near term as more data are collected. Production during 2016, though certainly below mine potential, only minimally depleted Platosa mineral resources, leaving more high–grade resources to mine at higher–rates and lower costs under dry mining conditions in the coming years. Additionally, our resumption of exploration at Platosa has delivered high–grade and near–term accessible mineralization. We plan to move further afield in the coming quarters, including resumption of exploration for skarn– Source/CRD mineralization. Most importantly, however, we have added exceptional new people to our team and look forward to fully drawing on their experience going forward to improve our performance.”

Update on Optimization Plan

The Company is pleased to provide an update on the ongoing optimization program at Platosa. As further described in the Company's annual information form (the “AIF”), the Company has developed an optimization program to more effectively dewater Platosa through an enhanced well–pumping system. The optimization program will maintain and increase a localized “cone of depression” of the water table around mine workings, ultimately resulting in dry mining conditions at Platosa. Under dry mining conditions, the Company expects to achieve higher rates of production at lower costs relative to current and historical production at Platosa. Refer to the AIF for a summary estimates on Platosa production rates and costs subsequent to the completion of the optimization program.

In December 2016, the Company completed the installation and testing of the primary booster station (comprising four 600hp pumps) in Guadalupe South. The Company also installed two additional 250hp submersible pumps in Guadalupe South. The initial results from these wells exceeded expectations, with the drawdown over the first week in excess of one metre. During Q1 2017, the Company completed well drilling and focused on advancing well cleaning and installing submersibles as wells were prepared. The well–cleaning process has proven effective and is essential to the project's long–term success. All submersibles have been delivered and are ready to be installed as wells are cleaned and the installation of the secondary booster station is nearing completion. The Company currently expects to reach 25,000 gpm pumping by mid–April, effectively reaching the Optimization Plan's long–term target. Additional submersible installations will be completed during Q2 to further enhance pumping rates.

Financial Results

Financial results for the three– and twelve–month periods ended December 31, 2016 and 2015 were as follows:

                 
('000s of USD, except amounts per share and per ounce)   Q4 2016   Q4 2015   2016   2015
Revenue (1)   3,354   2,477   16,994   16,167
Production costs   (3,620)   (3,318)   (13,906)   (15,611)
Depletion and amortization   (696)   (675)   (2,435)   (3,080)
Cost of sales   (4,316)   (3,993)   (16,341)   (18,691)
Gross profit (loss)   (961)   (1,516)   653   (2,524)
 
Corporate administration   (1,214)   (976)   (3,477)   (3,309)
Exploration   (809)   (123)   (1,345)   (685)
Other   (1,112)   424   (971)   (354)
Impairment of mineral rights     (662)   156   (662)
Royalty Income     726     726
Net finance cost   2,367   (381)   (11,288)   (446)
Income tax recovery   1,674   831   2,201   2,214
Net loss   (55)   (1,677)   (14,071)   (5,040)
Adjusted net loss (2) (3)   (2,489)   (676)   (3,408)   (4,039)
Loss per share – basic   (0.00)   (0.03)   (0.21)   (0.09)
Adjusted profit/loss per share – basic   (0.03)   (0.01)   (0.05)   (0.07)
 
Cash flow from (used in) operations (4)   (3,147)   (1,492)   (3,291)   (1,867)
Cash flow from (used in) operations per share – basic   (0.04)   (0.03)   (0.05)   (0.03)
 
Production cost per tonne (5)   251   255   250   275
Cash cost per payable silver ounce ($/Ag oz)   18.48   19.86   13.42   15.11
All–in sustaining cost (“AISC”) per silver ounce payable ($/Ag oz)   71.17   34.92   33.04   22.58
Adjusted AISC per silver once payable (6)   48.49   34.92   25.82   22.58
                 
(1)   Revenues are net of treatment and refining charges.
(2)   Adjusted net losses reflect results before fair value adjustments on embedded derivatives and warrants related to the Debentures (as defined below) (Q4 2016 – $2.4 million gain; Q4 2015 – $0.3 million loss; 2016 – $10.8 million loss, 2015 – $0.3 million loss). The fair value adjustment derives from the performance of the Company's stock during each period (Q4 2016 – $1.88 to $1.64; 2016 – $0.31 to $1.64; Q4 2015 and 2015 – $0.25 at inception to $0.31), resulting in variances in valuation/cost upon the potential conversion or exercise of the debentures or warrants, respectively.
(3)   Adjusted net loss for Q4 2015 and 2015 reflects results before $0.7 million impairment charge on DeSantis exploration property in Canada that was subsequently sold in 2016.
(4)   Cash flow from operations before changes in working capital.
(5)   Production cost per tonne includes mining and milling costs excluding depletion and amortization.
(6)   Adjusted AISC per payable silver ounce excludes the relatively one–time sustaining capital expenditures associated with the “Platosa Optimization Plan” described below (associated cash expenditures were $2.8 million in Q4 2016 and $4.8 million in 2016).
     

As in recent years, 2016 production at Platosa was impacted by water inflows, which prevented access to certain zones included in the mine plan. Consequently, available mineralization was mined in historical remnant areas and in newly identified mineralization outside of the Platosa mineral resource block model. Though the deposit is tightly drilled at 15 metre centres, manto boundaries are generally erratic and additional mineralization is often encountered outside of the resource block model. During the year, approximately 83% of produced tonnes were mined from outside the resource block model, with the predominance of tonnage mined from the Rodilla area (41,800 tonnes, with 8,700 tonnes mined from within the Rodilla resource block model), resulting in minimal depletion of mineral resources at Platosa during the year. Mineralization mined from outside the block model tended to be more erratic and thus subject to higher dilution than planned, resulting in lower grades than set out in the Company's mine plans for 2016. The Company expects grades to increase and mine planning to be more in line with expectations and historical trends when the Optimization Plan becomes fully effective during Q2 2017.

Production costs in 2016 of $13.9 million were reduced by $1.7 million relative to 2015, while producing similar tonnage, a reflection of the continuous cost reductions at the operation. Cost per tonne of $250/t in 2016 improved from $275/t in 2015. Approximately 15% of these cost savings relate to beneficial movements in the exchange rate for the Mexican peso, while the other 85% derived from management's efforts to reduce and more effectively manage costs.

During Q4 2016, the Company generated higher net revenues of $3.3 million (Q4 2015 – $2.5 million) due to higher silver equivalent payable ounces of 241,867 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – 230,270 AgEq ounces) resulting from higher lead and zinc prices. Revenue of $17.0 million in 2016 improved by 5% (2015 – $16.2 million) despite a 12% decrease in silver ounces payable of 1,133,789 due to lower grades produced and higher realized silver prices of $17.38 (2015 – $15.15).

The Company recorded a net loss of $55,000 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – net loss of $1.7 million). The Company's adjusted net loss of $2.5 million in Q4 2016 reflects the period's results before recording a $2.4 million fair value adjustment gain on embedded derivative and warrants relating to the Debentures in accordance with IFRS (Q4 2015 – $0.7 million). For 2016, the Company recorded a net loss of $14.1 million (2015 – net loss of $5.0 million). The Company's adjusted net loss for 2016 was $3.4 million before (i) a $10.8 million fair value adjustment loss on embedded derivative and warrants related to the debentures and (ii) a $0.2 million reversal of impairment on the DeSantis exploration property sold in the period (2015 – $4 million).

General and administrative expenses of $1.2 million in Q4 2016 increased by 24% compared to Q4 2015, primarily resulting from increased marketing, hiring of new officers, appointing new directors and additional vesting of stock based compensation during the quarter. Cash corporate administrative expenses of $0.8 million in Q4 2016 remained comparable to Q4 2015 of $0.7 million. For the year, general and administrative expense of $3.5 million was comparable to $3.3 million in 2015, with cash expenditures being $2.5 million compared to $2.4 million in 2015. The Company continues to maintain cost discipline at the corporate head office in Toronto.

The Company spent $0.8 million in exploration in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – $0.1 million) as it continued its surface drill program at Platosa, with an additional 2,500 metre drilled in the quarter for a total of 3,500 metres drilled in 2016. Drilling will continue to focus on expanding the current footprint of manto mineralization at Platosa as part of an ongoing 25,000 metre drilling program. Overall, exploration cost for 2016 was $1.3 million (2015 – $0.7 million).

In 2016, the Company invested $8.2 million in capital expenditures, with $4.8 million spent in capital expenditures for the Optimization Plan and the remaining $3.4 million spent on other sustaining capital expenditures, including $0.9 million on two new scoop trams, $0.5 million on a new jumbo and increased mine development of $1.3 million. As the Optimization Plan continues to move towards completion in 2017, a continuous review of capital expenditure programs ensures the Company's capital resources are utilized in a responsible and sustainable manner to conserve cash in advance of a return to positive cash flow at Platosa.

Cash costs net of byproducts (or Total Cash Costs) of $9.0 million in 2016 (2015 – $10.9 million) represented an 18% improvement from 2015. Despite lower silver production in 2016, total cash cost per silver ounce payable was $13.42/ounce compared to $15.11/ounce in 2015. The Company expects total cash costs net of by–product revenues to vary from period to period as planned production and development accesses different areas of the mine with different ore grades and characteristics, with material improvements expected as the Optimization Plan takes effect.

The Company's adjusted AISC per silver ounce payable of $48.49 in Q4 2016 (Q4 2015 – $34.92), resulted entirely from lower metal grades and, consequently, metal produced, along with the resumption of exploration drilling at Platosa. Non–adjusted AISC of $71.17 per silver ounce payable in Q4 2016 (Q4 2016 – $34.92) included significant one–time capital and development costs associated with the Optimization Plan, primarily relating to the purchase of pumping equipment, along with well–drilling costs. In 2016, the Company had an AISC of $33.04 per silver ounce payable and an adjusted AISC of $25.82 per silver ounce payable, excluding the one–time costs associated with the Optimization Plan.

Excellon defines AISC per silver ounce as the sum of total cash costs (including treatment charges and net of byproduct credits), capital expenditures that are sustaining in nature, corporate general and administrative costs (including non–cash share–based compensation), capitalized and expensed exploration that is sustaining in nature, and (non–cash) environmental reclamation costs, all divided by the total payable silver ounces sold during the period to arrive at a per ounce figure.

All financial information is prepared in accordance with IFRS, and all dollar amounts are expressed in U.S. dollars unless otherwise specified. The information in this news release should be read in conjunction with the Company's audited consolidated financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2016 and associated management discussion and analysis (“MD&A”) which are available from the Company's website at www.excellonresources.com and under the Company's profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

The discussion of financial results in this press release includes reference to “cash flows from operations before changes in working capital items”, “cash cost per silver ounce payable”, “all–in sustaining cost per payable silver equivalent ounce”, “adjusted all–in sustaining cost per silver ounce payable” and “adjusted net income” which are non–IFRS performance measures. The Company presents these measures to provide additional information regarding the Company's financial results and performance. Please refer to the Company's MD&A for the year ended December 31, 2016, for a reconciliation of these measures to reported IFRS results.

Production Highlights

Mine production for the periods indicated below were as follows:

        Q4   Q4   12–Mos   12–Mos
        2016(1)   2015(1)   2016(1)   2015(1)
Tonnes of ore produced   15,320   13,145   53,234   54,485
Tonnes of ore processed   14,417   12,999   55,593   56,849
Ore grades:                    
    Silver (g/t)   375   406   456   491
    Lead (%)   3.52   3.65   4.40   4.56
    Zinc (%)   4.80   5.33   5.70   7.20
Recoveries:                
    Silver (%)   90.0   88.9   90.5   89.0
    Lead (%)   81.1   79.8   82.1   77.7
    Zinc (%)   81.3   81.3   80.1   81.6
Production:                
    Silver – (oz)   159,524   152,628   752,689   794,289
    Silver equivalent ounces (oz) (2)   305,934   259,885   1,293,815   1,429,539
    Lead – (lb)   903,763   837,903   4,427,300   4,387,358
    Zinc – (lb)   1,248,022   1,261,072   5,581,060   7,362,938
Payable: (3)                
    Silver ounces – (oz)   126,773   135,928   668,181   721,067
    Silver equivalent ounces (oz) (2)   241,867   230,270   1,133,789   1,287,018
    Lead – (lb)   740,812   780,634   4,092,790   4,212,843
    Zinc – (lb)   955,415   1,061,270   4,602,386   6,274,379
                     
Realized prices: (4)    Silver – ($US/oz)     16.70    13.95    17.38    15.15
    Lead – ($US/lb)     1.03    0.75    0.85    0.79
    Zinc – ($US/lb)     1.22    0.69    0.98    0.83
                     
(1)   Period deliveries remain subject to assay and price adjustments on final settlement with concentrate purchaser. Data has been adjusted to reflect final assay and price adjustments for prior period deliveries settled during the period.
(2)   Silver equivalent ounces established using average realized metal prices during the period indicated applied to the recovered metal content of the concentrates.
(3)   Payable metal is based on the metals shipped and sold during the period and may differ from production due to these reasons.
(4)   Average realized price is calculated on current period sale deliveries and does not include the impact of prior period provisional adjustments in the period.
     

Tonnage mined in Q4 2016 of 15,320 tonnes represented a 17% increase from the previous quarter, with milling of 14,417 tonnes in the quarter, reflecting an 11% improvement from Q4 2015. For 2016, tonnes mined and milled of 53,234 tonnes and 55,593 tonnes were comparable to 2015. Development continues to be a priority to access the higher–grade areas of the mine including the 623 Manto, hosting mineral resources of 83,000 tonnes at 1,232 g/t Ag (1,777 g/t AgEq).

Annual General Meeting

The annual and special meeting (the “Meeting”) of Excellon shareholders will be held at 4:00 p.m. (ET) on May 10, 2017 at the King Edward Hotel (Kensington Room), 37 King Street East, Toronto, Ontario. Shareholders as of March 24, 2017 will be entitled to attend and vote their shares at the Meeting. The Management Information Circular and materials related to the Meeting will be available on the Company website and SEDAR in the coming days pursuant to Notice and Access rules.

Qualified Person

Mr. Ben Pullinger, P. Geo, Vice–President Geology, has acted as the Qualified Person, as defined in NI 43– 101, with respect to the disclosure of the scientific and technical information relating to exploration results contained in this press release.

Michael Verreault, Ing., has acted as a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43–101 for disclosure in respect of the Optimization Plan in this release. Mr. Verreault has a Masters in Applied Science (Hydrogeology) and 15 years of relevant experience focused on hydrogeology. He is a certified professional engineer (OIQ 125243) by the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec and is President of Hydro– Ressources Inc. Mr. Verreault is independent of the Company and visited Platosa several times during the preparation and ongoing implementation of the Optimization Plan referenced herein.

About Excellon

Excellon's 100%–owned Platosa Mine in Durango has been Mexico's highest–grade silver mine since production commenced in 2005. The Company is focused on optimizing the Platosa Mine's cost and production profile, discovering further high–grade silver and carbonate replacement deposit (CRD) mineralization on the Platosa Project and capitalizing on the opportunity in current market conditions to acquire undervalued projects in Latin America.

Additional details on the La Platosa Mine and the rest of Excellon's exploration properties are available at www.excellonresources.com.

Forward–Looking Statements

The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of the content of this Press Release, which has been prepared by management. This press release contains forward–looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 27E of the Exchange Act. Such statements include, without limitation, statements regarding the future results of operations, performance and achievements of the Company, including potential property acquisitions, the timing, content, cost and results of proposed work programs, the discovery and delineation of mineral deposits/resources/reserves, geological interpretations, proposed production rates, potential mineral recovery processes and rates, business and financing plans, business trends and future operating revenues. Although the Company believes that such statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward– looking statements are typically identified by words such as: believe, expect, anticipate, intend, estimate, postulate and similar expressions, or are those, which, by their nature, refer to future events. The Company cautions investors that any forward–looking statements by the Company are not guarantees of future results or performance, and that actual results may differ materially from those in forward looking statements as a result of various factors, including, but not limited to, variations in the nature, quality and quantity of any mineral deposits that may be located, significant downward variations in the market price of any minerals produced [particularly silver], the Company's inability to obtain any necessary permits, consents or authorizations required for its activities, to produce minerals from its properties successfully or profitably, to continue its projected growth, to raise the necessary capital or to be fully able to implement its business strategies. All of the Company's public disclosure filings may be accessed via www.sedar.com and readers are urged to review these materials, including the technical reports filed with respect to the Company's mineral properties, and particularly the July 9, 2015 NI 43–101–compliant technical report prepared by Roscoe Postle Associates Inc. with respect to the Platosa Property. This press release is not, and is not to be construed in any way as, an offer to buy or sell securities in the United States.

Envision Solar Receives More Follow-on Orders from Caltrans for EV ARC(TM) Solar Powered EV Chargers

SAN DIEGO, CA—(Marketwired – March 21, 2017) – Envision Solar International, Inc., (OTCQB: EVSI) (“Envision Solar,” or the “Company”), the leading renewably energized EV charging, outdoor media and energy security products company, announced that Caltrans has issued more repeat purchase orders for the Company's EV ARC™ product to provide EV charging infrastructure and emergency power.

Caltrans has previously purchased EV ARC™ products for EV charging at locations across California. This latest purchase will be the first for EV ARC™ units which have both EV charging and emergency power capabilities. Fresno County, Marin County and Los Angeles County are also taking advantage of the new E–Power system that Envision is delivering on select EV ARC™ models. No other EV charging solution can deliver both sustained and sustainable EV charging and emergency power during grid outages.

“Caltrans continues to demonstrate its commitment to hitting Governor Brown's climate action plan goals while reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said Desmond Wheatley, CEO of Envision Solar. “I'm very proud that they have chosen our American made secure solar powered EV charging stations to show that you can drive on sunshine and save money and lives with our solar powered energy storage units.”

Invented and manufactured in California, the EV ARC™ fits inside a parking space and does not reduce available parking in any way. It generates and stores enough clean, solar electricity to charge up to 225 miles of EV driving in a day. The energy is stored in the EV ARC™ product's energy storage for charging day or night or for use by first responders or others during grid outages. Because the EV ARC™ product requires no trenching, foundations or installation work of any kind, it is deployed in minutes and can be moved to a new location with ease. EV ARC™ products are manufactured in the Company's San Diego facility by combat veterans, the disabled, minorities and other highly talented, mission driven team members.

About Envision Solar International, Inc.

Envision Solar, www.envisionsolar.com, is a sustainable technology innovation company who's unique and patented products include the EV ARC™ and the Solar Tree® with EnvisionTrak™ patented solar tracking, SunCharge™ solar Electric Vehicle Charging, ARC™ technology energy storage and EnvisionMedia solar advertising displays.

Based in San Diego the company produces Made in America products. Envision Solar is listed on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol [EVSI]. For more information, visit www.envisionsolar.com or call (866) 746–0514.

Forward–Looking Statements

This Press Release may contain forward–looking statements regarding future events or our expected future results that are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties. All statements in this Report other than statements of historical facts are forward looking statements. Forward looking statements are generally accompanied by terms or phrases such as “estimate,” “project,” “predict,” “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “target,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “goal,” “will,” “should,” “may,” or other words and similar expressions that convey the uncertainty of future events or results. Statements contemplating or making assumptions regarding actual or potential sales, market size and demand, prospective business contracts, customer orders, trends or operating results also constitute forward looking statements. Our actual results may differ substantially from those indicated in forward looking statements because our business is subject to significant economic, competitive, regulatory, business and industry risks which are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond our control. Our operating results, financial condition and business performance may be adversely affected by a general decline in the economy, unavailability of capital or financing for our prospective customers to purchase products and services from us, competition, changes in regulations, a decline in the demand for solar energy, a lack of profitability, a decline in our stock price, and other risks. We may not have adequate capital, financing or cash flow to sustain our business or implement our business plans. Current results and trends are not necessarily indicative of future results that we may achieve.

Vista Group Conference Provides State-of-the-Art Industry Software Update for Global Film Industry Customers and Partners

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND and LOS ANGELES, CA—(Marketwired – March 16, 2017) – More than 200 cinema professionals from around the world gathered in Auckland, New Zealand last week for the 8th biennial VISTA Customer Conference. The conference was the largest yet that Vista has held. Vista Group, the world–leading provider of cinema management, film distribution and customer analytics solutions to studios, distributors, exhibitors, and moviegoers, provided state–of–the–industry updates on current and future product developments.

Held Monday, March 6th through Thursday, March 9th, delegates from major multi–territory cinema chains through to independents, heard from Vista experts about the latest exciting innovations in Vista Cinema, ranging from mobile apps and food and beverage solutions, through to new products that Vista Group is imagining and developing. Aligned with Vista's strategy of bringing new and improved synergistic solutions to the industry, Vista's aim of 'Rethinking the Business of the Movies' was evident. In–depth product tutorials were available in the 'Vista Lab,' which was configured especially for the event and proved very popular with delegates.

In his opening remarks, VISTA Group CEO Murray Holdaway said: “Vista Group businesses enjoy very close relationships with our customers in over 80 countries around the world. With more than 500 people in New Zealand, the USA, China, the UK, Australia, the Netherlands and Romania, we are well across the global cinema landscape and that helps us to anticipate what new products will have the most effect on a customer's business.”

In a move that highlighted Vista Group's reputation and standing, the opening keynote address was given by New Zealand Government Finance Minister Steven Joyce, formerly Minister of Communications & Information Technology and Minister of Science & Innovation. View remarks from Mr Holdaway and Minister Joyce here.

Minister Joyce has been a longtime supporter of Vista's highly–successful one–stop–shop approach to the software needs of the cinema industry and used Vista to illustrate the overall entrepreneurial spirit that is connected to the extraordinary recent growth in the New Zealand economy.

He attributed the country's solid financial growth to several factors, among them its proximity to the exploding Asia Pacific market including China and Japan, attractive product and service sectors including New Zealand tourism, food and beverage, and an enviable high tech and IT presence. The latter, said Minister Joyce, is best illustrated by Vista Group, which was named New Zealand's 'Hi–Tech Company of the Year' in 2016.

Minister Joyce praised Mr Holdaway for developing what he called a deep niche area of expertise, explaining how going narrower and deeper, as Vista [Entertainment Solutions] had done in the cinema software business, showed how New Zealand companies have exploited a history of innovation.

Attendees were enthusiastic in their response to the conference, many of whom have attended multiple iterations.

“Why do we choose Vista products? For me, it's simple. Vista has a singular focus on the cinema industry from the exhibitor point of view,” concluded Neil Campbell, President & CEO of Landmark Cinemas, Canada. “They've been that way for 21 years and that's why we focus on them. It's why we get really excited about their products and why we come to the conference every two years. Vista is always looking for the best and newest products as well as making everything they've done in the past even better. Their products make it easier for our customers to go to the movies and enable us to make better decisions about running our business.”

“One of the strengths we see in Vista is the people,” said David Doyle, Chief Information Officer for Regal Entertainment Group. “As much as we value technology, our relationship with Vista is primarily about a common care of our business and a meaningful interest in our industry. It's a very trusted relationship. Attending the Vista Customer Conference is a fantastic opportunity to meet cinema exhibitors from many countries and gain an in–depth world view of our industry.”

One of the most heavily–attended panels was a case study on The Rec Room concept. The Rec Room is Canada's premier 'Eats & Entertainment' destination that brings together dining, amusement gaming, technology and live entertainment experiences all under one roof. Part of Cineplex, Canada's biggest cinema exhibitor and a long–time Vista client, The Rec Room is a premier social destination and the ultimate gathering spot for corporate events, groups and parties.

Food and beverage held significant interest for the conference attendees. From recliner seats to a robust array of food and beverage options and the opportunity to order them via kiosk and avoid the concessions queue, theater operators are eager to import these software advancements into their operations.

MoviePass, the nation's largest theatrical subscription service, which recently announced a strategic collaboration with Vista Group International, outlined how theater owners and chains nationwide that use the Vista Cinema ticketing solution will be able to take advantage of full integration with the MoviePass service. By integrating MoviePass directly into the ticketing software, participating theatres will be able to offer MoviePass members enhanced features and new capabilities on mobile devices such as e–ticketing, seat selection and advance purchase capabilities directly from a subscriber's mobile phone. This integration also provides exhibitors with more granular data, including harvesting valuable demographic information on moviegoers.

The use of virtual reality in the online content sector was explored by Vista Group company Powster CEO and founder Ste Thompson. The trend towards using VR in the promotion of films with the added 'call to action' of connecting the content to a theater directory and the ability to purchase tickets, generated huge interest at the Conference.

Lawrence Wang, Head of Vista China, updated attendees on Vista's answer to the practice of third party ticketing used to purchase 80% of movie tickets in China. Vista is working on a product that will allow theaters in other markets to move ticket sales to a mobile device, but will also allow the chain to retain its customer loyalty information, a problem for Chinese theater owners since the third party takes ownership of the ticket buyer's profile data.

Summing up, Kimbal Riley, CEO of Vista Entertainment Solutions, described the conference as a dedicated fiesta of film industry software and creative solutions information and consultation. “The staging and hosting of the event, as well as the level of attendance, is testament to Vista's dedication to our customers, our respect, our committed staff, and our determination to stay ahead of the game and enable our customers to excel.”

About Vista Group International:
Vista Group International (Vista Group) is a public company, listed on both the New Zealand and Australian stock exchanges (NZX: VGL) (ASX: VGL). Vista Group provides cinema management, film distribution and customer analytics solutions to companies across the global film industry. Cinema management software is provided by Vista Entertainment Solutions, the core business of the Group. Movio (authority in moviegoer data analytics), Veezi (cloud–based SaaS software for the Independent Cinema Market), MACCS International (film distribution software), Numero (box office reporting software for film distributors and cinemas), Cinema Intelligence by Share Dimension (business intelligence solutions), Powster (creative studio and marketing platform for movie studios) and Flicks (moviegoer 'go to' portal for movie information) provide products that leverage the success of this platform into other parts of the film industry; from production and distribution, to cinema exhibition through to the moviegoer experience. Vista Group has over 500 staff across nine offices in New Zealand (Auckland headquarters), Sydney, Los Angeles, Dallas, London, the Netherlands, Romania and China.

Website: www.vistagroup.co
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/vista–group–limited
Source: Vista Group International Ltd, Auckland, NZ

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Nonhuman Rights Project Argues for Chimpanzees' Rights, Release to Sanctuary in New York Appellate Court

NEW YORK, NY—(Marketwired – March 16, 2017) – The New York County Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Judicial Department heard oral arguments today in the Nonhuman Rights Project's appeal of a lower court's denial of petitions for writs of habeas corpus on behalf of two captive chimpanzees, Tommy and Kiko.

In front of a packed courtroom, Nonhuman Rights Project President Steven Wise, the lead attorney in the case, argued that the capacity to bear duties and responsibilities is not a legally acceptable reason for denying recognition of Tommy's and Kiko's legal personhood and fundamental right to bodily liberty. He also told the judges that both chimpanzees should be freed from captivity to a Florida sanctuary under New York's common law habeas corpus statute, which guarantees that all legal persons have the right to bodily liberty.

A cornerstone of Tommy's and Kiko's cases, this fundamental right should not be limited to human beings, Wise has repeatedly argued.

In a ruling in the NhRP's first habeas petition on Tommy's behalf — a ruling to which the lower court determined itself bound in its rulings on the NhRP's second habeas petitions for Tommy and Kiko — the Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department assumed that chimpanzees cannot bear duties and responsibilities and that legal persons must have the capacity to do so. These assumptions are erroneous, Wise asserted during today's hearing.

Requiring the ability to bear duties and responsibilities as a precondition for personhood, Wise said, “[would deprive] millions of humans in New York the ability to go into court” under habeas corpus, a reference to infants, children, incapacitated and elderly people who cannot realistically fulfill that requirement.

He also pointed out that chimpanzees can bear duties and responsibilities within their communities and said claiming otherwise is “biased and arbitrary.”

“It [the Third Department ruling] was irrational,” he told the court, citing the amicus brief submitted in support of the NhRP by Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law Laurence Tribe. “It was unfair, and it's not backed up by science.”

Wise argued before the judges for just over 15 minutes, responding to questions that included why he keeps returning to court after failing in previous attempts (because he disagrees with the rulings, he said) and why he thinks chimpanzees should be afforded legal personhood under the law (he pointed out that women and blacks were also at one point not considered persons under the law).

At one point, the judges asked him why he's not asking to set the chimpanzees free, but is instead requesting them to be moved to the sanctuary Save the Chimps. Wise pointed out that there are numerous habeas corpus cases in which the plaintiff is moved from one facility to another, including from a mental hospital to a prison.

Wise also clarified to the judges that he is not seeking “human rights” for Tommy and Kiko, but rather legal rights that would give them protections under the law — namely, the right to bodily liberty — that they do not currently have. As the law is now, the chimpanzees are considered “things,” and the only way to guarantee them fundamental rights would be to have them declared “persons.” Other nonhuman entities, including corporations, have been recognized as legal persons.

“I think it went well,” Wise said after the hearing. “It was a lot of questions really fast, which is what we like. Judges have concerns and questions, and it's a privilege that they express their concerns so that I can address them. I thought we did address their concerns. All our arguments are grounded on fundamental ideas of justice. And I think when the judges sit down and look at them, they'll see the truth in what we're saying. The reasons that humans have rights are the same as to why nonhumans should have rights. I am eternally optimistic.”

A decision is expected in five to eight weeks.

   
CASE NO. Tommy: Index. No. 162358/15 (New York County)
  Kiko: Index. No. 150149/16 (New York County)
   
CASE NAMES: THE NONHUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT, INC., on behalf of TOMMY, Petitioner–Appellant, –against– PATRICK C. LAVERY, individually and as an officer of Circle L Trailer Sales, Inc., DIANE L. LAVERY, and CIRCLE L TRAILER SALES, INC., Respondents–Respondents.
   
  THE NONHUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT, INC., on behalf of KIKO, Petitioner–Appellant, –against– CARMEN PRESTI, individually and as an officer and director of The Primate Sanctuary, Inc., CHRISTIE E. PRESTI, individually and as an officer and director of The Primate Sanctuary, Inc., and THE PRIMATE SANCTUARY, INC., Respondents–Respondents.
   

For more information on Tommy, Kiko, and the NhRP's court cases on their behalf, visit https://www.nonhumanrightsproject.org/litigation/

About the Nonhuman Rights Project

The Nonhuman Rights Project is the only civil rights organization in the United States working through litigation, public policy advocacy, and education to secure legally recognized fundamental rights for nonhuman animals. For more information, visit http://www.nonhumanrightsproject.org or email us at media@nonhumanrights.org.

About NhRP President Steven M. Wise

Steven M. Wise is founder and president of the NhRP. He has practiced animal protection law for 30 years throughout the US and is the author of four books: Rattling the Cage — Toward Legal Rights for Animals; Drawing the Line — Science and the Case for Animal Rights; Though the Heavens May Fall — The Landmark Trial That Led to the End of Human Slavery; and An American Trilogy — Death, Slavery, and Dominion Along the Banks of the Cape Fear River. He holds a J.D. from Boston University Law School and a B.S. in Chemistry from the College of William and Mary.

First Florida Installation of Envision Solar Tree(R) Product

SAN DIEGO, CA—(Marketwired – March 16, 2017) – Envision Solar International, Inc., (OTCQB: EVSI) (“Envision Solar,” or the “Company”), the leading renewable energy EV charging, media and energy security product company, announced today that the first Florida installation of its Solar Tree® product has been successfully completed at 1810 West Kennedy Blvd. in Tampa.

The patented Solar Tree® product was installed by Tampa Bay Solar using Envision's state of the art installation manual and process.

“This was a flawless solar installation,” said Steve Rutherford, President of Tampa Bay Solar. “It's great to get a fully engineered product that we are able to install quickly and easily rather than going through a typical construction process. These tracking Solar Trees are eye grabbers and we are looking forward to installing many more of them.”

“The original building that is now 1810 Kennedy, was the first Gold LEED building in Tampa Bay,” said Natalia Levey, owner and developer of the project. “We have always cared about the environment and our guests. To see a positive impact on the utility bill is a big bonus. The Solar Tree product was exactly what we were looking for. 1810 Kennedy is a work of art and the Solar Tree extends the art to our parking lot. The tracking delivers a lot more electricity while adding an unexpected visual enhancement to our parking lot. My husband is excited to charge his Tesla with solar power”.

“Our Solar Tree product is perfect for this project,” said Desmond Wheatley, CEO of Envision Solar. “Hurricane zones are challenging for many parking lot solar solutions but our Solar Tree product is fabricated to be easily installed in any wind zone.”

Invented and manufactured in California, the patented Solar Tree® product shades eight parking spaces and does not reduce available parking in any way. It generates enough clean, solar electricity to power up to 700 miles of EV driving in a day or to offset the equivalent of six single family residences' utility bills. The system's solar electrical generation is enhanced by the patented EnvisionTrak™ system which causes the array to follow the sun, generating 18 to 25% more electricity than a fixed array. The energy can be stored in optional on–board ARC™ energy storage for peak shaving, demand charge reduction or emergency power provision. Because the Solar Tree® product is delivered as a fully engineered kit of parts, it is the fastest installed and least impactful solar shaded parking product available. Solar Tree® products are manufactured in the Company's San Diego facility by combat veterans, the disabled, minorities and other highly talented, mission driven team members.

About Envision Solar International, Inc.
Envision Solar, www.envisionsolar.com, is a sustainable technology innovation company who's unique and patented products include the EV ARC™ and the Solar Tree® with EnvisionTrak™ patented solar tracking, SunCharge™ solar Electric Vehicle Charging, ARC™ technology energy storage and EnvisionMedia solar advertising displays.

Based in San Diego the company produces Made in America products. Envision Solar is listed on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol [EVSI]. For more information, visit www.envisionsolar.com or call (866) 746–0514.

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