North American Nickel Reports Potential for High Nickel Recoveries at Regional Exploration Targets on Maniitsoq Project

March 2, 2015

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - March 2, 2015) - North American Nickel Inc. (TSX VENTURE:NAN)(OTCBB:WSCRF)(CUSIP:65704T 108) (the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has received a report on the results of mineralogical studies performed by SGS Canada Inc. Burnaby, BC ("SGS") on six drill core samples of mineralized norite from the 2014 exploration program at the Maniitsoq Ni-Cu-Co-PGE sulphide project in southwest Greenland. The samples were obtained from regional targets P-013, P-030, P-053, P-058 ("Fossilik") and P-149 ("Pingo"). The results of the study indicate that high nickel and copper recoveries are possible under conventional flotation mineral processing.

The objectives of the study were to determine the modal mineralogy, mineral texture, nickel, copper and cobalt deportment, and the liberation, association and exposure of the nickel, copper and iron sulphides of each sample. A copy of the report can be found on the Company website nan2015.q4web.com.

Report Highlights

  • Sulphide mineral species identified in each sample are pyrrhotite, pentlandite, pyrite and chalcopyrite.

  • Pentlandite is the main nickel-bearing mineral in each sample with nickel contents ranging from 90.1 to 93.1%.

  • Potential pentlandite recoveries range from 96.1 to 97.2% based on liberation, association and exposure characteristics of crushed samples stage pulverized to 90% passing 150 micrometres.

  • Pentlandite D50 (micrometres) grain sizes range from 33 to 43 micrometres.

  • All copper is hosted by chalcopyrite. Chalcopyrite P50 (micrometres) grain sizes range from 22 to 40 micrometres.

  • Potential chalcopyrite recoveries range from 85.4 to 96% based on liberation, association and exposure characteristics of crushed samples stage pulverized to 90% passing 150 micrometres.

  • Pentlandite and pyrite are the main hosts of the cobalt in the samples.

North American Nickel CEO, Keith Morrison, states: "The study results indicate that the predominant form of nickel mineralization is pentlandite. This may be an advantage to potential future economics as this mineral form traditionally supports very high nickel recoveries from conventional metallurgical processes. This year's results are consistent with the 2013 results from the Imiak Hill Complex and confirm favorable mineralogical characteristics at five independent, mineralized, regional targets distributed over a distance of 80 km."

SUMMARY OF KEY STUDY RESULTS

Drill testing of exploration targets in 2014 results in the intersection of norite-hosted nickel-copper sulphide mineralization at regional targets P-013, P-030, P-053, P-058 ("Fossilik") and P-149 ("Pingo"). Six representative drill core samples of the mineralization, including two from P-030 and one from each of the remaining target areas, were collected and submitted to SGS in order to carry out an initial mineral characterization study (see Table 1 and Figure 1).

Mineralogical analysis was conducted by QEMSCAN (Quantitative Evaluation of Minerals by Scanning Electron Microscopy), X-ray Diffraction (XRD) and Electron Microprobe Analysis (EMPA). Samples were analyzed both as core pieces (for mineral texture) and also crushed to 90% passing 150 micrometres for process mineralogy characteristics (liberation, association and exposure).

Key results of the study are summarized below. Further details including quality assurance and quality control, sample preparation, methodology, technical definitions, modal analyses, and details of mineral chemistry as well as liberation, association and exposure characteristics can be found in the SGS report posted on the NAN website.

Table 1: Mineralized Samples from Maniitsoq Regional Exploration Targets used in the Mineral Characterization Study

Sample Name Target Area Hole # Ni (%) Cu (%) Co (%) Comments
Box12.MQ-2014-070-53.40-53.50m P-030 MQ-12-070 3.69 0.52 0.11 Semi-massive sulphide stringer in norite
Box17.MQ-2014-054-71.10-71.26m P-058 ("Fossilik") MQ-12-054 5.60 0.40 0.15 Massive sulphide vein
Box21.MQ-2014-041-88.90-89.00m P-149 ("Pingo") MQ-12-041 0.74 0.43 0.02 Disseminated sulphides in norite
Box22.MQ-2014-071-94.35-94.50m P-053 MQ-12-071 1.35 0.11 0.04 Disseminated, patchy & stringer sulphides in norite
Box28.MQ-2014-070-119.90-120.00m P-030 MQ-12-070 1.05 0.47 0.04 Coarse disseminated to patchy sulphides in norite
Box30.MQ-2014-066-133.90-134.00m P-013 MQ-12-066 2.71 0.31 0.08 Semi-massive sulphides in norite

Note: Ni, Cu & Co values are from analyses performed for each sample by SGS Canada Inc. Analyses were completed by potassium pyrosulphate fusion and X-ray fluorescence.

Modal Analyses

The modal mineral abundances were determined in both drill core pieces and in crushed samples. Sulphide minerals comprise pyrrhotite, pentlandite, pyrite and chalcopyrite and the main silicate minerals are orthopyroxene, amphibole, clinopyroxene and feldspars. The presence of talc (< 5%) was confirmed by XRD analysis for the sample from target P-013.

Grain size

The D50 (micrometres) passing values determined on the crushed samples are presented in Table 2. (D50 (micrometres) value is defined as the medium grain size within the sample where 50% of the particles are coarser and 50% of the particles are finer than 50 micrometres).

Table 2: D50 Cumulative Grain Size Distribution

D50 (micrometres) Sample ID
Box12.MQ-2014-070-53.40-53.50m Box17.MQ-2014-054-71.10-71.26m Box21.MQ-2014-041-88.90-89.00m Box22.MQ-2014-071-94.35-94.50m Box28.MQ-2014-070-119.90-120.00m Box30.MQ-2014-066-133.90-134.00m
Pentlandite 40 35 35 43 33 35
Chalcopyrite 22 24 40 23 31 24
Fe-Sulphides 47 40 48 50 48 39
Hard Silicates 64 37 60 49 58 45
Soft Silicates 16 25 34 19 20 26
Carbonates 20 22 18 16 22 15
Oxides 14 15 15 13 14 30
Particle 55 39 59 50 56 44

Nickel, Copper and Cobalt Deportment

Elemental deportment for nickel, copper and cobalt in each sample were calculated using the EMPA and QEMSCAN data and are shown (in wt %) in Table 3. On average, pentlandite carries 92% of the nickel, pyrrhotite 6% and pyrite very trace amounts (<0.5%). Silicates account for trace to minor amounts of nickel ranging from <0.5% to ~6%. Chalcopyrite carries 100% of the copper. Pentlandite and pyrite are the main carriers of cobalt. Cobalt abundances in each of these two minerals vary from sample to sample but average 63% in pentlandite and 37% in pyrite.

Table 3: Summary of Nickel, Cobalt and Copper Deportment

Element Mineral Name Box12.MQ-2014-070-53.40-53.50m: Box17.MQ-2014-054-71.10-71.26m: Box21.MQ-2014-041-88.90-89.00m: Box22.MQ-2014-071-94.35-94.50m: Box28.MQ-2014-070-119.90-120.00m: Box30.MQ-2014-066-133.90-134.00m:
Nickel (Ni) Pentlandite 93.1 91.2 91.8 90.1 91.1 92.6
Pyrrhotite 6.25 8.69 1.75 7.43 5.24 6.44
Pyrite 0.04 0.03 0.07 0.02 0.07 0.03
Orthopyroxene 0.45 0.01 3.40 0.57 2.48 0.28
Clinopyroxene 0.04 0.00 0.04 0.09 0.03 0.11
Amphibole 0.09 0.02 2.06 1.67 0.84 0.44
Biotite/Phlogopite 0.03 0.05 0.83 0.12 0.19 0.02
Talc 0.01 0.00 0.06 0.02 0.06 0.13
Chlorite 0.00 0.04 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Cobalt (Co) Pentlandite 64.5 69.6 48.7 74.6 46.7 71.7
Pyrite 35.5 30.4 51.3 25.4 53.3 28.3
Copper (Cu) Chalcopyrite 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

Potential Recovery of Pentlandite and Chalcopyrite

The potential recovery characteristics of pentlandite and chalcopyrite for the sample suite are summarized in Table 4. Potentially recoverable pentlandite ranges from 96.1 to 97.2%. Potentially recoverable chalcopyrite ranges from 85.4 to 96%.

Potential recovery is the percent of the mineral (not value metal) that can potentially be recovered through flotation. It is calculated using liberation, association and exposure of the grains (on a two dimensional surface area) and is used as a predictive tool. The following results are based on the mineralogical analysis and do not reflect other recovery factors that could occur in the actual metallurgical processes and should only be used as a guide to the metallurgical performance.

Table 4: Summary of Potential Recovery for Pentlandite and Chalcopyrite

Mineral Potential Recovery Box12.MQ-2014-070-53.40-53.50m Box17.MQ-2014-054-71.10-71.26m Box21.MQ-2014-041-88.90-89.00m Box22.MQ-2014-071-94.35-94.50m Box28.MQ-2014-070-119.90-120.00m Box30.MQ-2014-066-133.90-134.00m
Pentlandite Potentially Recoverable 97.2 96.1 96.8 96.5 96.8 96.1
Non Recoverable 2.76 3.87 3.15 3.54 3.21 3.92
Chalcopyrite Potentially Recoverable 85.4 93.9 95.2 85.4 96.0 90.3
Non Recoverable 14.6 6.10 4.77 14.6 3.97 9.68

Seqi Port

On January 19, 2015 the Company announced that it entered into an Exclusivity Agreement with Minelco AS that provides the Company the opportunity to acquire 100% ownership of Minelco's deep water Seqi Port in south western Greenland. (http://nan2015.q4web.com/news/news-details/2015/North-American-Nickel-Signs-Exclusivity-Agreement-With-Minelco-AB-for-the-Seqi-Port/default.aspx)

Further to that announcement, North American Nickel has been granted an extension by Minelco until the end of March, 2015 to undertake due diligence of the Seqi Port and to conclude the final assignment terms. The successful completion of this transaction would provide the Company with the flexibility of a secure operational hub. In addition to the technical due diligence, North American Nickel is continuing to evaluate the potential direct cost benefits as well as the reduction in project time, cash flow management and risk surrounding the deep water all year access facilitated by the Seqi Port for any future economic development of nickel sulphide deposits at their Maniitsoq project.

Qualified Person

Expert services relating to the Mineral Characterization study were provided by SGS Canada Inc. in Vancouver, BC under the supervision of Mr. Anastassios Grammatikopoulos (PhD., P. Geo) and Ms. Sarah Prout (PhD), both Senior Mineralogists with SGS. The information in this release related to the Mineral Characterization study was reviewed and prepared under the direction of Patricia Tirschmann, P. Geo, Vice President of Exploration for NAN, who is a qualified person as defined by National Instruments 43-101.

About North American Nickel

North American Nickel is a mineral exploration company with 100% owned properties in Maniitsoq, Greenland and Sudbury, Ontario.

The Maniitsoq property in Greenland is a Camp scale project comprising 2,954 square km covering numerous high-grade nickel-copper sulphide occurrences associated with norite and other mafic-ultramafic intrusions of the Greenland Norite Belt (GNB). The >75km-long belt is situated along, and near, the southwest coast of Greenland, which is pack ice free year round.

The Post Creek/Halcyon property in Sudbury is strategically located adjacent to the past producing Podolsky copper-nickel-platinum group metal deposit of KGHM International Ltd. The property lies along the extension of the Whistle Offset dyke structure. Such geological structures host major Ni-Cu-PGM deposits and producing mines within the Sudbury Camp.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" and "forward-looking information" under applicable securities laws concerning the business, operations and financial performance and condition of the Company. Forward-looking statements and forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the impact of mineralogy, estimation of mineral resources at mineral projects of the Company; economics of production; success of exploration activities; the future economics of minerals including nickel and copper; synergies and financial impact facilities; the benefits of the development potential of the properties of the Company and currency exchange rate fluctuations. Except for statements of historical fact relating to the Company, certain information contained herein constitutes forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are frequently characterized by words such as "plan," "expect," "project," "intend," "believe," "anticipate", "estimate" and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions "may" or "will" occur. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are based on a number of assumptions and subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Many of these assumptions are based on factors and events that are not within the control of the Company and there is no assurance they will prove to be correct.

Factors that could cause actual results to vary materially from results anticipated by such forward-looking statements include variations in metal grades, changes in market conditions, variations in recovery rates, risks relating to international operations, fluctuating metal prices and currency exchange rates, and other risks of the mining industry, including but not limited to the failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated. The Company cautions that the foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive. Investors and others who base themselves on forward-looking statements should carefully consider the above factors as well as the uncertainties they represent and the risk they entail. The Company believes that the expectations reflected in those forward-looking statements are reasonable, but no assurance can be given that these expectations will prove to be correct and such forward-looking statements included in this press release should not be unduly relied upon. These statements speak only as of the date of this press release. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or management's estimates or opinions should change except as required by applicable securities laws.

Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be anticipated, estimated or intended. Statements concerning mineral reserve and resource estimates may also be deemed to constitute forward-looking statements to the extent they involve estimates of the mineralization that will be encountered if the property is developed.

Statements about the Company's future expectations and all other statements in this press release other than historical facts are "forward looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and as that term defined in the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company intends that such forward-looking statements be subject to the safe harbours created thereby. Since these statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, the Company's actual results may differ materially from the expected results.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Mark Fedikow

President

North American Nickel Inc.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

To view Figure 1: Location of Regional Exploration Targets Sampled for Mineral Characterization Study, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/NAN.jpg.

Contact Information:
North American Nickel Inc.
Jaclyn Ruptash
Corporate Communications
604-986-2020
Toll free: 1-866-816-0118
nan2015.q4web.com
604.770.4334 1.866.816.0118
C/o Bennett Jones LLP Attn: Sander Grieve 3400 - One First Canadian Place, P.O. Box 130,
Toronto, Ontario, M5X 1A4