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a thousand times before the period is up, just as it has in the company's short life; but it's nevertheless indicative of the patience at the heart of the business. "The money we're making at the moment," he says, "is being ploughed back into assets. Three and a half years ago we had three with a value of $85 million, now we have 48 worth just short of $300 million. By 2011, we expect to own 600."Currently, the emphasis is on uranium although RII has both gold and coal assets too. But in a sense, the commodity is almost immaterial as Madacsi sees his role as problem solver or facilitator. If someone wants a coal lease and RII doesn't have one, then he knows a man who does.RII's operational model is to work lean, move fast, deal direct and risk the absolute minimum of money. It's opted to be based in Africa to be near the action but is very choosy about the countries it deals with, avoiding those where corruption is endemic or where governments are shaky. Madacsi quoted a recent venture where £100 million had been raised from investors by London brokers to put into mining. Dealing through middlemen, a portfolio spread across 14 countries was bought; but only four of those were on his own list of acceptable locations. In fact, he was very sceptical about how many of the millions would ever turn a profit."There are lots of companies and investors who want Resource Investment InternationalApril 10 www.bus-ex.com 45to get into mining," he says, "but frankly they simply don't know where to start. They have no history or infrastructure. As such, they put themselves at the mercy of middlemen, some of whom are prepared to take advantage by inflating prices or selling dubious leases."Africa is a well surveyed country and drilling data by the ream is available to prospectors. Much of it dates back to times when uranium was worth $2 per lb. Now it sells for up to $55 per lb, thereby making many previously uneconomical sites more viable. But it's still necessary to have a very finely tuned ear to the ground and solid relationships with those who make the decisions.Yet all of this is done with a head office payroll of just 10! Every single activity is subcontracted out with just a lean band of managers overseeing operations. All the donkey work is done through Red Flag International and Maadin, the two prime consultancy companies who then farm the work out for RII.The interview RII gave this publication is rare. Not one for ostentation or publicity, it works quietly in the background, attracting new partners by word of mouth. But its boutique approach is paying dividends-and getting a lot of inexperienced juniors out of a hole in the process. - Editorial research by Robert Hodgson