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Interview with Rick Rule about the Sprott Natural Resource Symposium

on 6/11/2019
I had the pleasure of talking with Rick Rule about the Sprott Natural Resource Symposium that will take place in Vancouver on July 30 - August 2nd, 2019. There will be top-notch speakers, and the living legend panel, made up of people who have built multi-billion-dollar natural resource based businesses from scratch. Each of almost 80 public company exhibitors at the conference is an issuer that is owned in Sprott managed accounts, which guarantees that Sprott has vetted every single exhibitor. According to Rick Rule, the Sprott Natural Resource Symposium is the world's most important annual event for high-net-worth retail investors in the natural resource business. It has stood the test of time for nearly 30 years, and, this year, it could be especially useful to investors because current share prices are at real lows coming out of a long bear market.

Al Alper Jr.: This is Allen Alper Jr., President of Metals News, and I'm talking with Rick Rule of Sprott Global. Rick, what I'd like to talk with you about is your upcoming Sprott Annual Symposium. Could you tell me a little bit about the Sprott Annual Symposium in Vancouver?

Rick Rule: Well that’s one of my favorite topics of course. The Sprott Annual Symposium in Vancouver, now sponsored by us, was originally sponsored by Agora Financial and has been in place for almost 30 years, so it's stood the test of time. We believe that the symposium is the most important annual event for high-net-worth retail investors in the natural resource business, really on the planet. We have top-notch speakers, ranging from Jim Rickards to Danielle DiMartino Booth on the macro side. We have the living legend panel, which is made up of people who have built multi-billion-dollar natural resource based businesses from scratch. Importantly, not just talking about their companies, but talking about how the lessons they learned building those companies can make you better resource investors.

Rick Rule: Every exhibitor at the conference is an issuer that is owned in Sprott managed accounts, meaning that the qualification to be an exhibitor at the conference is that Sprott knows you well enough to put its own money in place, in your shares. That doesn't guarantee, of course, that the shares will go up, but it does guarantee that we have vetted every single exhibitor, which is something that our attendees really, really like.

Rick Rule: The conference takes place between July 30th and August 2nd in Vancouver, British Columbia, the epicenter of natural resource exploration finance worldwide. We suspect that this year will be especially useful to people, given the fact that the natural resource businesses are coming out of the teeth of a very, very, very bad bear market. So we suspect that share prices are at real lows. You know, Allen, and many of your readers/investors know, that resource markets are nothing if not cyclical. Bear markets are the authors of bull markets, and bull markets are the authors of bear markets. This very long bear market, while its constrained interest in natural resource businesses, has set up bargains the likes of which I've not seen since the decade of the 1980s.

Rick Rule: It's of course also possible to have some fun in Vancouver, British Columbia. It's a beautiful city, a cosmopolitan city, and a really scenic city with fjords and mountains coexisting right next to each other. Hundreds of fantastic restaurants are within easy walking distance of the hotel. So it's the perfect chance for people, who care about natural resource investing, to have 4 intensive days of work, combined with some pleasure, either during the conference, after hours, or before or after. Hundreds of our customers, year after year after year, have thanked us, in addition to the fine conference, for introducing them to Vancouver, British Columbia and allowing them to avail themselves of a family vacation, even while doing things to secure their family's financial future.

Al Alper Jr.: That sounds excellent! Tell us a little bit more about the venue.

Rick Rule: Yes, the venue is the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, a venerable hotel located right in the center of downtown Vancouver. Great place to stay! I've been staying there myself for 40 or 45 years. The conference takes place right in the hotel itself. The hotel is situated 3 blocks from Vancouver's harbor and in the heart of downtown Vancouver, but with easy access to things like Stanley Park, English Bay, and Chinatown. If you wish, you can stay in the hotel, you can eat there, work out in the gym there, and attend the conference there. Very convenient! But of course with so many competing places to eat and play, I have no doubt that many of your readers/investors, who attend, will also use the hotel as a convenient base to explore this beautiful cosmopolitan city.

Al Alper Jr.: Now there are several recreational events focused around this conference. Can you tell us a little bit about those events?

Rick Rule: We have lots and lots of opportunities. There is a mine information tour that's scheduled ahead of time. In fact, there are 10 or 12 events, which one can find at the conference website, by following this link: . There's also the enormously popular attendee harbor cruise, where we take 200 attendees, first come first serve, on a 4 hour harbor cruise. It's open bar, of course sponsored by Sprott. Enough hors d'oeuvres that you can in fact make a meal on the boat if you want to, most attendees do. It's absolutely sublime cruising Vancouver harbor on this spectacular yacht, while conversing with old and new friends. Remember that you're quite far north, so it stays light much later than it does where many of your readers/investors live, so it's absolutely a perfect opportunity.

Rick Rule: The truth is that there are so many opportunities, in conjunction with the event, people would do well to review the conference website and select the ones that are appropriate for them.

Al Alper Jr.: Excellent! Tell us a little bit more about the companies and the opportunities for the attendees to get to see the C.E.Os of the different companies that are at this event.

Rick Rule: We'll have about 80 public company exhibitors there. The important differentiator between our conference and every other investment conference is that the qualification to be an exhibitor at our conference is that your security must be owned in a Sprott managed account, meaning that we have our own money in every exhibitor at the place. You will have the opportunity between or even during speeches to tour the exhibit hall, meet with a geologist, meet with the C.E.Os. In addition, you'll be rubbing shoulders with industry leading people because they attend the conference, too, trying to figure out what to do with their own money. You will find investment newsletter editors there that reach a combined circulation of well over a million active investors worldwide. The companies will be putting forward their best presentation because they are reaching an audience that's much broader than the audience of the conference itself.

Rick Rule: It's a jam-packed schedule. It begins early in the morning with sponsored informational breakfasts and goes till about seven o'clock at night. You don't need, of course, to devote 11 hours a day to information gathering, but we find that many, many attendees choose to do exactly that. In addition to the fact that you'll be hearing from company C.E.Os, you'll be hearing from newsletter editors, you'll be hearing from some of the best financial analysts on a macro scale in the world. Importantly, you will be rubbing shoulders with probably 700 other high-net-worth natural resource investors and speculators from around the world. The idea that in a group like this, all of the information that's available to you comes from the dais or comes from the booth is ridiculous. There's lots of knowledge and lots of experience just to be gained by having lunch with or attending one of the cocktail hours, with other investors, who are in their own right skilled at investments and speculation in natural resources.

Al Alper Jr.: So if you were a first time attendee, what would you do in advance to plan to make the most out of this event?

Rick Rule: That's a great question. I would, first of all, go to the conference website. What you will see there is an interview that I did a couple years ago, talking about how to get the maximum benefit out of the Sprott Conference. Pay attention to the schedule and pay attention to the speakers that you really want to hear. Plan your itinerary according to your own agenda; in other words, don't just show up and go, but plan ahead of time. Look at who the exhibitors are, and see the ones that you own or the ones that you are likely to own and schedule time to meet with those people. Schedule time to attend their workshops, ahead of time. Let's say that you own 4 or 5 of the exhibitors, you want to find out more about companies that you already own. If you contact those companies before the event and schedule time with them, even if it's just time at the cocktail hour, you will benefit mightily. The ability to talk one on one with the chief executive office of some company that you're a shareholder in, is a benefit that you don’t have any other conference that I'm aware of, but its common place at this conference.

Rick Rule: The ability that you would have to walk around the exhibit floor, trailing the likes of Bob Quartermain or Clive Johnson or Robert Friedland, people who have built billion dollar companies, who are walking around the exhibit floor, looking for opportunities for them to invest in. Listening to the questions they ask other exhibitors is a less well understood, but very tangible benefit of coming to this conference.

Al Alper Jr.: So is there anything else you'd like to add?

Rick Rule: Well, to give people an added incentive, I invite Metals News readers/investors to email me personally, directly. My email address is I will, on an absolutely no obligation basis, review your readers/investors’ natural resource portfolios. All they have to do is in the body of the email, include the name and symbols of the companies that they've invested in. I will rank those companies from 1 to 10, 1 being best, 10 being worst, and comment where appropriate on the companies, and return the email to the person who sent it to me, along with a link to our conference website. We have found in times past that many of our attendees have found this to be a very valuable added inducement.

Al Alper Jr.: Thank you very much for all of your insights.

Rick Rule: Always a pleasure. Thank you for interviewing me for Metals News, and I look forward to seeing you in Vancouver

Al Alper Jr.: Yeah, Dad and I will both be there.

Rick Rule: Remember to do things like come on the boat tour, and other fun things.

Al Alper Jr.: Dad and I both love the boat tour every year! We wouldn’t miss it, so we will see you there.

Rick Rule: Fantastic, thank you very much.

Al Alper Jr.: Thank you. We’ll publish your press releases as they come out so our readers/investors can follow your progress.

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