Taking a look at lithium news as of late, a couple of conditional supply agreements have been announced between Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) and junior lithium mining companies (Pure Energy Minerals (TSXV:PE), as well as Bacanora Minerals (TSXV:BCN,LSE:BCN) and JV partner Rare Earth Minerals (LSE:REM)). While that’s exciting news, a number of analysts remain cautious, and have pointed out that these agreements are light on detail (in Chris Berry’s words, an “out-of-the-money call option strategy”) and do not appear to be binding.
Meanwhile, there have been suggestions that the Volkswagen (ETR:VOW3) emissions scandal could incite more interest in electric vehicles, which would be a boon for lithium demand; there have also been a number of early stage advancements in research for new lithium battery technologies. Looking to the future, lithium expert Joe Lowry recently published a piece on what could be next for the lithium market.
To cap off the month, here’s a look at the lithium news stories published on Lithium Investing News for the month of October.
1. Benchmark World Tour: Highlights from Vancouver
The Investing News Network attended the Benchmark Mineral Intelligence World Tour in Vancouver, where a range of speakers covered different aspects of the lithium-ion battery supply chain. Speakers included Sam Jaffe, managing director of Cairn Energy Research Advisors, Jay Chmelauskas, president and CEO of Western Lithium (TSX:WLC), and Gianni Kovacevic, executive chairman of CopperBank Resource (CSE:CBK) and author of My Electrician Drives a Porsche?. Click here for more highlights from the Benchmark World Tour.
2. Is Tesla Rolling the Dice With Their Lithium Supply?
Excitement over lithium and other critical metals has centered on how much of the mineral Tesla will need to supply its new lithium-ion battery gigafactory in Nevada. However, Lowry has suggested that the company isn’t afraid to gamble on the future of its lithium supply, addressing the question of why the electric vehicle maker doesn’t have a supply agreement with a currently producing lithium company. Click here for the full article.
3. 5 Lithium Experts for Investors to Follow
As with any industry, there are a number of experts that follow the lithium market closely and provide unique insight. We’ve given an overview of a few for interested lithium investors to follow, including Simon Moores of Benchmark Mineral Intelligence and Daniela Desmoreaux of SignumBOX. Click here for more lithium experts to follow.
4. 5 Basic Lithium Facts
While it might be easy to get excited about batteries and gigafactories, there’s more to lithium that investors should know. For example, it’s the lightest metal on the periodic table, and it is used in a range of applications, including pharmaceuticals, ceramics, greases and heat-resistant glass. Click here for more lithium basics.
Companies with lithium news
Companies in the space have been putting out plenty of lithium news as well. Here’s a quick sample of what some of them have been up to over the past month:
- Nemaska Lithium (TSXV:NMX,OTCQX:NMKEF) received a notice of allowance for a patent relating to its proprietary process for producing lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate from spodumene.
- Dajin Resources (TSXV:DJI,OTCMKTS:DJIFF) announced it has begun planning for an exploration program at its mining rights in the Salinas Grandes salar in Argentina.
- Following an announcement that it will buy lithium-ion battery producer Sakti3 for $90 million, vacuum maker Dyson confirmed plans for a $1-billion lithium battery factory.
- Orocobre (TSX:ORL,ASX:ORE) provided another update on debottlenecking work at its Olaroz lithium facility in Argentina, which it expects to be complete by January 2016.
- Alix Resources (TSXV:AIX) bought two exploration concession applications in Mexico adjacent to the Sonora lithium project, owned by Bacanora Minerals and Rare Earth Minerals.
- Oakridge Global Energy Solutions (OTCMKTS:OGES) confirmed that it plans to produce commercial Thin Film Solid State lithium batteries as part of its expansion plans announced in September.
- Avalon Rare Metals (TSX:AVL) provided an update on its Separation Rapids lithium project, indicating that it expects its pilot plant for the project to be complete in the first quarter of 2016.
Securities Disclosure: I, Teresa Matich, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.