The second in MCI-International’s new range of one-ounce silver bullion coins has been released and they’re clearly setting them up as a rival to the well-regarded Somali Elephant series. These coins have a mintage of only 5,000 pieces and as such are well worth investing in, a situation reminiscent of the early Rwandan Wildlife and just mentioned Somalian series, whose early entrants appreciated quite heavily because of similar, early mintage limits.

As before, the coin maintains the signature circle of 12 profile elephants, with the main artwork occupying the central area of the reverse side. The art remains of a high standard and clearly different from last years, a criticism levelled at the 2015 Somali Elephant, whose design is very similar to the 2014 coin.

The inscription running in a circular path carries over also and reads “PROTECTION DE LA NATURE – ELEPHANT DU BENIN”. The obverse is identical to the 2014 coin as the date is carried on the reverse side. It’s the national emblem of the Republic of Benin.

A little pricier than a standard bullion coin, it remains a worthy and attractive buy in our opinion. No doubt gilded or coloured versions will follow over the coming months if that’s more your thing. Available now, directly from MCI’s retail site, or US buyers can pick one up from Majestic Coins. No doubt other dealers will follow shortly.

Last years coin was also a pretty piece that seemed to generate a decent buzz. Limited to 5,000 pieces, a gilded variant was also released a while later, joined later by a coloured and gilded version. Recently a 1kg version appeared sporting a €1500-plus price tag. Sold as a numismatic and not a bullion coin, confirmed by the meagre 99 unit mintage.

SPECIFICATION
DENOMINATION 1,000 FRANCS CFA
COMPOSITION 0.999 SILVER
WEIGHT 31.1 g
SIZE 38.61 mm
FINISH PROOFLIKE
MINTAGE 5,000 (TBC)
DESIGNER UNKNOWN
BOX / COA NO / NO