Leveraging Growing Demand for Electrification Commodities Through Established Metal Royalty Modeling and Acquisition
The increasing popularity of electric vehicles and the green energy movement has disrupted the transportation and power industry entirely. By 2050, over 17 countries announced 100 percent zero-emission vehicle targets or goals to phase out internal combustion engines vehicles.
Seeing these unprecedented trends in growth across the electric vehicle market means the demand for key raw materials used in the lithium-ion batteries needed to power these technological innovations could experience significant parallel growth. As prices for these raw commodities grow, market researchers predict more money investment opportunities coming into the sector. Especially for royalty companies with widespread exposure across the market, the investment upside could be significantly advantageous.
Electric Royalties Ltd. (TSXV:ELEC) is a royalty company focused on building a premium portfolio that takes advantage of the demand for a wide range of commodities and critical metals like lithium, vanadium, manganese, tin, graphite, zinc, cobalt, nickel and copper. Focusing on these vital elements leverages the growing demand and global drive toward electrification across virtually all sectors, including transportation, rechargeable batteries, large-scale energy storage, renewable energy generation and more.
As a royalty company, Electric Royalties does not operate mines nor needs large and highly specialized teams to carry on their operations. Likewise, having a robust commodity portfolio helps to diversify investment and mitigate risk for investors and shareholders while leveraging exploration upside, revenue-driven business modelling and more. It currently has a growing portfolio of 17 royalties on assets located primarily in North America and Australia..
The company operates a two-tier approach to royalty acquisition. It has a strategic global focus for projects in politically stable jurisdictions with an emphasis on districts with strong legal and mining frameworks. Additionally, Electric Royalties focuses on lifelong assets with outstanding exploration potential, which leverage near-term production potential, advanced staging, multiple commodity cycles, resource upgrades and producing opportunities.
Unlike other royalty companies, Electric Royalties has an exceptionally robust nine commodity portfolio and a top management team that understands the ins and outs of how the royalty game works. “We’re creating a new royalty where we make sure it’s gross revenue, covers the whole deposit and it’s drafted by us. At this point in time, we do this for a living. Ultimately, you’re going in, and you’re creating and adding some value to a group,” commented Electric Royalties CEO and director Brendan Yurik.
In July 2021, the company announced that it closed a private placement consisting of five million units of the company issued for gross proceeds of CAD$2 million. Each unit consists of one common share of Electric Royalties plus one common share purchase warrant. Completion of the private placement is subject to regulatory approval but advances the company’s plans for additional strategic royalty acquisition.
Electric Royalties Ltd.’s management team is an experienced group of executives and advisors with proven track records of success across multiple related industries like mining, finance and more. Together, their years of expertise primes the company for significant growth in line with the exponential growth forecasted in the demand for sustainable electrification globally.
Electric Royalties’ Company Highlights
- Electric Royalties is a royalty company established to take advantage of the demand for a wide range of metal commodities, which benefit from the drive toward electrification of a variety of consumer products and industries like transportation, battery development and energy.
- The company is generating revenue from a growing portfolio of 17 royalties focusing predominantly on acquiring royalties on advanced stage and operating projects to build a diversified portfolio in politically stable jurisdictions.
- Market research expects electric vehicle sales, battery production and renewable energy generation to increase significantly over the next several years. Demand for valuable commodities necessary for the production of electric vehicles is slated to grow with these trends.
- Electric Royalties leverages a unique opportunity to invest in and acquire royalties over highly prospective mines and projects that host widespread mineralization of commodities like zinc, lithium, copper, nickel, tin, manganese, vanadium, graphite and cobalt.
- The company’s management team brings together an experienced team with decades of expertise in finance, mining, business development and more.
- Electric Royalties closes two previously announced royalty purchase and sale agreements to acquire, in the aggregate, a 1 percent Net Smelter Royalty (the “1 percent NSR”) on licenses comprising core strategic tenure at the Cancet Lithium Project situated in Quebec, Canada.
Middle Tennessee Zinc Mine Royalty
This producing zinc asset hosts levels of annual production hovering 50,000 tons of zinc concentrate across a 15 year mine year.
Middle Tennessee zinc mines have produced over 2.7 billion pounds of zinc for over 50 years. The strategically positioned zinc mine leverages close proximity and association with Trafigura’s Clarksville smelter, the only primary zinc producer in the US.
Authier Lithium Royalty
The Authier Lithium is a 0.5 percent gross revenue royalty and the project sits in close proximity to the only producing lithium mine in Canada about 45 kilometers northwest of Val d’Or and is operated by Sayona Lithium. It stands as a simple, near-surface deposit with resources defined in one spodumene-bearing pegmatite based on 31,000 metres of diamond drilling. Authier also leverages excellent infrastructure, including existing mining support services, environmentally-friendly low-cost hydroelectric power, gas and road networks.
Sayona Mining Limited completed a revised definitive feasibility study in November 2019 under JORC. Sayona also has a large strategic investment by Piedmont Lithium, who is the only lithium company to have an offtake agreement with Tesla. Sayona Mining has recently completed the acquisition of the Canada Lithium Mine in partnership with Piedmont Lithium and plans to ramp up production at the mine using ore from the Authier project with planned production preliminarily set for 2023.
Graphmada Graphite Royalty
The near-production Graphmada Large Flake Graphite Mining Complex is located in Eastern Madagascar and was in continuous production for 30 months prior to being placed in care and maintenance due to Covid related restrictions put in place at the start of 2020. The operator Bass Metals has been using the down time to look at an expanded production case set to be released in the near future andrecently increased its mineral resource by 41% to 20.2 million tonnes (Mt) of >90% large flake graphite. All mining and processing infrastructure, including roads, bridges, power, camp, tailings dams are in place, along with 40-year mining permits and 20-year landholder agreements. The complex sits adjacent to the main national highway and is110km to the country’s only deep-water port at Toamasina. The royalty is a 2.5 percent gross revenue royalty.
Bissett Creek Graphite Royalty
The Bissett Creek property sits between Ottawa and North Bay in Ontario, Canada. The feasibility stage asset has a potential annual production level of 33,200 tons with a mine life of approximately 21 years at a US$1,800 revenue per ton ratio.
Bissett Creek hosts open pit mining potential and has already seen significant bulk sampling, pilot plant testing and recoveries of over 92.4 percent graphite. The next steps include further exploration and production expansion of some of the highest large flake yields reported from any graphite project globally.
Mont Sorcier Vanadium Royalty
The Mont Sorcier property hosts a large-high-quality Iron resource with significant and extractable Vanadium in a top-tier mining jurisdiction. The one percent gross revenue royalty has an estimated 4.8 million ton iron annual production potential at 65 percent iron and 0.6 percent vanadium. The potential IRR is 33.8 percent.
Exceptionally low titanium content makes the deposit unique to other iron-titanium-vanadium deposits around the world. Low titanium in the deposit allows the iron ore and vanadium processing directly through a blast furnace for potential lower-cost operations and open-pit mining with a life of mine strip ratio of 0.89.
Glencore has entered into a long-term arrangement to support the development of the Mont Sorcier project and is assisting with raising capital to finalize feasibility studies.
Battery Hill Manganese Royalty
Battery Hill is a historic resource that spans 1,228 hectares and leverages fast-tracked feasibility study stage potential. Kemetco currently has operations to develop and commercialize a flow sheet to produce a battery-grade manganese product for the growing electric vehicle and energy storage industries. The property leverages great highway access and transmission lines. Electric Royalties has early-mover potential with Battery Hill as there are no producing manganese mines in North America.
Battery Hill project mineral resource estimate consists of 34.86 million tonnes of Measured and Indicated mineral resources grading 6.42% Mn, plus an additional 25.91 million tonnes of Inferred mineral resources grading 6.66% Mn utilizing a 2.5% Mn cut-off grade. In partnership with Kemetco, they have done extensive metallurgical testing achieving a product with 99.95 percent purity, also with very low contaminants, was considered a transformational achievement as this demonstrated that Manganese X Energy’s Battery Hill manganese could be compliant and suitable for battery manufacturing use in EVs, energy storage and other high-tech applications. A PEA is currently underway.
Seymour Lake Lithium Royalty
Seymour Lake is a 1.5 percent net smelter royalty that covers 16,654 hectares of lithium mineralization hosted in spodumene-bearing pegmatite sills with a thickness of more than 26 meters. Electric Royalties has exercised an AUD$8.7 million option and established a joint venture to progress Seymour Lake and other strategically located lithium projects. The property also has excellent road access near the main CN rail line.
The main pegmatite at the North Aubry prospect is 250 meters wide and 300 meters long and remains open along strike and at depth. Strategic positioning near pegmatites helps to potentially reduce transport costs and leverage easier access to high-quality mineralization in future mining endeavors. Its over 6.58 million ton measured and indicated lithium resource and potential 24,000tpa annual production level are exciting attributes of this royalty for the company to take advantage of.
Millennium Cobalt Royalty
The Australian-based cobalt-copper depository stands open for expansion and sits in the well-established mining district of Mount Isa, Qld. Electric Royalties recently signed an option for Metal Bank Ltd. to earn in and Joint Venture the project.
The royalty leverages a historic resource of inferred 3.1 million tonnes of mineralization at 0.14 percent cobalt, 0.35 percent copper and 0.12 gold grades. A 2018 drill program confirmed connective high-grade cobalt zones and wide cobalt zones with assay results indicating metal grades exceeding prior expectations. Preliminary metallurgical studies have also demonstrated the potential to recover an excess of 91 percent of the cobalt and copper.
Bouvier & Chubb Lithium Royalties
These highly prospective projects sit within the Preissac-Lacorne plutonic complex of the prolific Abitibi Greenstone Belt, the complex forming excellent surrounding mining opportunities for lithium mineralization. The plutonic complex also generated the Quebec Lithium project located 60 kilometers north of Val dOr, Quebec. The royalties stand at two percent gross revenue.
Yalbra Graaphite Royalty
The Yalbra Graphite Project is located 250km North West of Meekatharra and 280km East of Carnavon, Western Australia, and covers an area of 22km². The property has been systematically explored for graphite mineralisation, undertaking mapping, a heli-VTEM survey, several rounds of drilling, petrology, two resource estimates and metallurgy test work. The drilling program resulted in some of the highest grade x thickness graphite drill intercepts reported in Australia.
Glassville Manganese Royalty
The Glassville project comprises 15 claims close to the Battery Hill project. The pre-production asset has a historical resource of over 453,000 manganese mineralization at 11 percent manganese and 8.45 percent iron grades to a depth of 80 meters.
Mount Dorothy Cobalt & Cobalt Ridge Royalties
The 0.5 percent gross revenue royalties include exploration projects located near the Millenium cobalt project, which hosts highly prospective high-quality cobalt, copper and gold mineralization. The royalties operate early-mover advantages and excellent exploration potential as much of the area remains under-explored and limitedly tested.
Electric Royalties’ Management & Board of Directors
Brendan Yurik – CEO & Director
Brendan Yurik is the founder and CEO of Evenor Investments Ltd, a financial advisory group to junior mining companies for alternative financing, debt, equity and M&A with experience on over CAD$2 billion in mining financing transactions throughout his career. He has prior global experience as a research analyst as well as in business development and mining financial advisory roles with Endeavour Financial, Cambrian Mining Finance Ltd, Northern Vertex Mining Corp. and King & Bay West Management Corp.
Luqman Khan – CPA, CGA, CFO
Luqman Khan is the CFO of RE Royalties Ltd, a renewable energy royalty company, involved in the acquisition of 86 royalties to date. He has been a financial reporting executive with over 20 years of professional experience in accountancy and business management. Additionally, Khan has served as CFO for several publicly listed TSX-V resource companies and previously with Ernst and Young in their assurance practice.
David Gaunt P.GEO – Chief Geo-Scientist
David is an economic geologist specializing in project assessment and resource estimation. His experience spans projects worldwide and includes roles with senior mining companies and junior exploration companies. He is a co-recipient of the PDAC’s Thayer Lindsley International Discovery Award.
Marchand Snyman CA – Chairman
Co-founder and Chairman of RE Royalties Ltd, a renewable energy royalty company, involved in the acquisition of 84 royalties to date. Over 25 years senior executive experience in corporate finance and mining with a global merger, financing, acquisition and divestiture track record of more than 50 transactions.
Craig Lindsay MBA, CFA – Director
Founder and CEO of Otis Gold Corp (TSXV: OOO) and a current director of VR Resources Ltd. (TSXV: VRR), Alianza Minerals Ltd. (TSXV: ANZ) and Philippine Metals Inc. (TSXV: PHI). Prior to Otis, was Founder and CEO of Magnum Uranium Corp and led its sale to Energy Fuels Inc. (TSX: EFR). In excess of 25 years of experience in corporate finance, venture capital and public company management.
Robert Schafer P.GEO – Director
Co-founding director of International Royalty Corp (sold for $800m to Royal Gold). More than 30 years of experience working internationally in business development roles with major and junior mining companies including formerly representing as Chairman of PDAC. Serves as a director of a number of public resource companies.
The Recycling Solution to the EV Lithium Battery Metal Supply Challenge
It’s no secret that lithium-ion batteries power the modern world, and all signs point to them being an absolute necessity for future technology. The global market for lithium-ion batteries is anticipated to register a CAGR of 20.1 percent between 2021-2026, resulting in a market size of US$168 billion in 2026, a substantial increase from US$46.8 billion in 2019. The stationary energy storage market is expected to drive the market growth, with applications reaching across many industries, from telecoms to solar power generation systems. Lithium-ion batteries are so important to the future that US President Biden issued an executive order declaring a list of metals that are critical to the United States, signaling the vital importance of these metals.
Scientists and engineers around the world are racing towards the development of various lithium-ion battery recycling techniques. The projected surge in demand for these batteries creates an accompanying surge in batteries that need to be recycled 5-8 years later. Much of the research into recycling lithium-ion batteries focuses on reclaiming batteries and giving them second-life applications. However, there are other opportunities to create profitable upcycling processes that make use of production scrap and other waste materials. These recycling and upcycling processes focus on extracting valuable materials from lithium-ion batteries that can be directly used in the production of new batteries.
American Manganese Inc. (TSXV:AMY,OTCQB:AMYZF,FSE:2AM) is a technology and critical metals-driven company that is focused on advanced lithium-ion battery upcycling. The company owns two patents (US Patent No. 10,246,343 and US Patent No. 10,308,523) that power its innovative upcycling process. It also owns patents for this process in Japan and Korea. This closed-loop process takes battery manufacturing waste and end-of-life batteries and upcycles them into a high-value cathode precursor material. The company also has three mining projects located in the United States and Canada.
Lithium-ion batteries are a 31 percent active cathode material, which is a combination of lithium, nickel, manganese and cobalt. For example, modern cathodes such as lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide and lithium nickel cobalt aluminum oxide are used in electric vehicles today. The cost of the active cathode material represents 25 percent of the total costs of lithium-ion batteries. This makes the active cathode material an important aspect of lithium-ion battery manufacturing. American Manganese has pioneered a process, called RecycLiCo, that takes battery cathode production waste and black mass from end-of-life batteries and upcycles it into high value cathode precursor material that can be directly integrated into the battery manufacturing process.
RecycLiCo is the company’s flagship project and a clear indicator of the renewed direction of the company. While American Manganese began as a mining company, they’ve since pivoted to developing and commercializing its patented upcycling process. The process is focused on “black mass” a dark substance that’s created by mechanical size reduction of end-of-life batteries and battery production wastes. Black mass is used in the RecycLiCo process to recover 99 percent of lithium, cobalt, nickel and manganese, which is astounding compared to the alternative which recovers no lithium and only 40-60 percent of nickel and cobalt.
“Generally, you can mechanically break down a battery into its individual components but we differentiate [between recycling and upcycling] by creating a higher-value product. That’s exactly what we’re doing with the production of the cathode precursor. We highlight the importance of reducing the amount of steps and going directly into a higher-value product,” said Zarko Meseldzija, chief technology officer, in a recent interview.
The current roadmap for the RecycLiCo process is to grow the project from a pilot plant and R&D into a demonstration plant. The company has committed $2.7 million towards the construction and testing of its demonstration plant which plans to further de-risk the process scale-up. Assuming the success of a demonstration plant, the next step is to create a commercial plant, which will cost an estimated $15-20 million. At this time, the company will explore licensing and joint development partnerships to further expand. In October 2021, American Manganese closed a $20 million financing with institutional investors to go towards its road to commercialization.
American Manganese’s Company Highlights
- American Manganese Inc. is an innovative technology and mining company focused on a patented technology that upcycles lithium-ion batteries and scrap material
- The company was previously focused on mining, and still holds claims to three properties.
- American Manganese owns patents for their upcycling process in the United States, Japan and Korea. The long-term plans for the company include leveraging its intellectual property via licensing with strategic partners.
- The patented RecycLiCo process can extract over 99% of the lithium, nickel, manganese, and cobalt found in lithium-ion battery black mass.
- American Manganese is currently scaling up its process into a demonstration plant, with plans to create a commercial plant
The RecycLiCo™ Patented Process: Innovative Lithium-ion Battery Recycling
Exploring and Producing Lithium to Fuel the Green Revolution
Argentina and lithium mining go hand-in-hand. The South American nation is one of three encompassed in the prolific Lithium Triangle, a region that holds more than half of the world’s lithium deposits. With demand for lithium on the rise, Argentina’s advantageous positioning as the host of the world’s third-largest lithium reserves presents a world-class mining opportunity.
Market researchers project the global lithium market to spike to US$8.24 billion in 2027. The international drive to produce sustainable alternatives for transportation through the adoption of electric vehicles and greener power makes Argentina an especially unique location for high yield lithium mining across the country’s famous lithium salars.
Spey Resources (CSE:SPEY,OTCQB:SPEYF,FSE:2JS) is a Canadian mineral exploration company focused on addressing the demand for lithium as a natural resource to fuel the future. The company holds an option to acquire 100 percent interest in the Candela II lithium brine project located in the Incahuasi Salar, Salta Province, Argentina and an option to acquire a 100 percent undivided interest in the Silver Basin project and Kaslo silver project in British Columbia.
The Candela II project or “Incahuasi project,” hosts two major aquifers located with 145ppm lithium and strong brine flow. In July 2021, Spey Resources announced it had accepted a quotation from Amaru Mining Services and made preparations to commence drilling at the Incahuasi Salar, Argentina within a few weeks. This exciting chapter in the exploration of the Candela II project includes up to four exploration wells and expansive testing, drilling and pilot plant construction.
The short-term next steps for the company include utilizing drawdown funding for C$15 million for a large pilot plant with an estimated 100-ton capacity. The company plans to complete a US175 million funding and US$60 million in drawdowns to construct the plant over 18 months. This pilot plant could see full production in 2.5 years.
Spey Resources continues to advance its goals of meeting lithium demand with its recent option agreement to acquire a 100 percent interest in the Pocitos I and II claims from AIS Resources in Salta, Argentina. The property has strategic positioning near high yield lithium projects and leverages excellent infrastructure, including gas, electricity and road access.
The company’s major silver projects in British Columbia offer excellent exposure to the precious metals and silver markets and boast exceptional positioning in a politically stable, mineral-rich and mining-friendly jurisdiction. The Silver Basin gold-silver property leverages close proximity to the historic Silver Cup mining camp and Kaslo Silver hosts diverse deposits of silver-lead-zinc, making it an exceptional exploration prospect.
Spey Resources has a highly experienced management and technical exploration team with over a century of professional expertise in the resource, finance and energy sectors. This results-oriented team and their vested interest in company success prime Spey for exceptional discovery potential and advanced development of its lithium and precious metal projects.
Spey Resources’ Company Highlights
- Spey Resources Corp. is a Canadian mineral exploration company focused on advancing its lithium projects to address the demand for lithium as a natural resource to fuel a greener future.
- The company has an option to acquire 100 percent of the Candela II project located on the Incahuasi Salar in the prolific Lithium Triangle area of Salta, Argentina.
- Candela II/ Incahuasi project hosts two major aquifers with 145ppm lithium and strong brine flow. AIS Resources is the project manager.
- In June 2021, Spey Resources signed an option agreement to acquire 100 percent interest in the Pocitos I and II claims from AIS Resources in Salta, Argentina. The project leverages excellent infrastructure and highly prospective exploration potential.
- The company’s Canadian projects include the Silver Basin gold-silver property and Kaslo Silver property in British Columbia. Both projects present excellent exposure to the precious metals market and leverage historic silver mining districts.
- Short-term goals for the company include working to operate its pilot plant at Candela II and reach full production within 2.5 years.
Spey Resources’ Key Projects
Incahuasi Salar Project
The Incahuasi Salar project is located approximately 45 kilometers from the township of Tolar Grande in Salta, Argentina. The project leverages close proximity to major lithium players and famous lithium salars such as Arizaro,(Next View Energy), Pocitos, Rincon, Pozelous, Pular, Cauchari and Oloroz.
Incahuasi Salar has seen significant exploration with completed VTEM geophysics showing low aquifers with potassium, magnesium and lithium brines. Likewise, drill hole data shows lithium brines are close to the surface with sample analysis revealing lithium values from 250-400ppm. Exploration has been aided by accessible roadways and minimal human disruption in the area.
The next steps for the project include additional geophysics, testing and drilling to conform to resource sizing. Spey Resources intends to build a camp to aid its operations and construct its pilot plant, which could see full production in January 2023.
Kaslo Silver Property
The Kaslo silver property consists of 13 claims and 13 crown grants covering a total area of 3,238.9 hectares along Keen Creek, 12 Kilometres west of Kaslo in the Slocan Mining Division of southern British Columbia, Canada. Spey Resources has the right to earn an undivided 100 percent interest in and to the property, which is subject to a 2.5 percent net smelter return royalty.
Historic mining production boasts a reported average grade of 70.3g/t silver, 3.05 percent lead and 4.72 percent zinc. The property uniquely hosts faulting, shearing and intrusive activities across deposits of silver-lead-zinc. Despite its rugged terrain, Kaslo leverages accessible roadways, nearby communities and utility networks.
Recent work includes geochemical sampling, prospecting, ground and airborne geophysical survey, geological mapping, excavator trenching and diamond drilling. In 2018, Tay Resources collected a total of 12 rock samples, which helped Spey advance its exploration and targeting for the highly prospective project.
Silver Basin Gold-Silver Property
The Silver Basin gold-silver property is located in the Columbia Mountains near Trout Lake in the West Kootenay region of British Columbia. The property covers the southern part of the historic Silver Cup Mining Camp in the Lardeau District of the Revelstoke Mining Division. The mineral claims that comprise the property cover 2,268 hectares of ground and touch an eight-kilometer length of axial trace that hosts past-producing mines.
In 2020, Spey Resources conducted mineralization sampling from the IXL, Morning Star, Chance, Foggy Day, Bonanza, Butte and Gallant Boy workings as well as a number of other prospects on the property. The next steps for the project include sample analysis to determine targeting and further exploration.
Spey Resources’ Management Team
Nader Vatanchi — CEO & Director
Nader Vatanchi has spent the last nine years in finance, starting with Edward Jones and IG Wealth Management in 2012 where he spent a combined six years before selling his business to pursue his entrepreneurial goals.
Vatanchi graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology from Simon Fraser University. Currently, he serves as CEO of Musk Metals Corp. (CSE:MUSK), CEO of Forty Pillars Mining Corp., and CFO of Triangle Industries Ltd., a reporting issuer.
Abbey Abdiye — CFO
Abbey Abdiye has extensive experience in the financial sector in both public and private companies. He is a chartered professional accountant (CPA) and CFO of other reporting issuers, where he was responsible for all financial, fiscal management, regulatory compliance matters and reporting aspects of company operations. He also provided strategic guidance and direction in capital structuring and engaged in an innovative financing program that leveraged sales and development.
At Spey, Abdiye will provide leadership and coordination in the administrative, business planning, reporting and budgeting efforts of the company. He will oversee the company’s financial reporting, internal controls, corporate governance management systems, annual audit and regulatory compliance matters. He obtained a Bachelor of business administration degree from Simon Fraser University and a co-op education certificate.
Ian Graham — Director
Ian Graham is a mining professional with over 28 years of experience in the technical characterization and financing of mineral deposit exploration and development. His 20 years with the major mining companies Anglo American and Rio Tinto has been followed by experience in founding and financing public companies in the minerals sector.
In his roles with both the major and junior companies, Graham has been involved with exploration for mineral deposits, from targeting through discovery and the delineation to the feasibility of projects. He has experience with the modelling of project economics (DCF) and the structuring of project and company financing. Graham’s project roles have taken him to southern Africa, Canada, the US, India, Russia and Latin America; as the chief geologist with the Project Generation Group at Rio Tinto, his focus was global.
INN does not provide investment advice and the information on this profile should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any security. INN does not endorse or recommend the business, products, services or securities of any company profiled.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Spey Resources and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
Key Projects in the Epicenter of US Lithium Development, Nevada’s Clayton Valley
The large-scale shift to carbon-pollution-free electricity and net-zero emissions is already underway. According to analysts and industry executives, “the pandemic has proved to be a reset point for the market.” With the worldwide lithium battery market expected to grow exponentially in the coming decade — which has the potential to reach a record value of US$80 billion by 2026 — it’s clear there is significant potential and a lot of growth to come.
“And when you come into this growth period where year-on-year the volumes are getting significantly bigger in terms of orders from the battery industry, I think that has the potential to create a real bottleneck in terms of keeping supply up with demand,” said Andrew Miller, product director at Benchmark Mineral Intelligence in an interview with INN.
Add to that the passing of the Paris Agreement in 2016 and the Biden Administration’s energy and infrastructure plans, and it points to an increased focus on combating the climate crisis in governments around the world. Even the US Department of Energy (DOE) revealed it believes the solution requires establishing a domestic supply chain for lithium-based batteries.
But with limited production capacity available in the United States, more production will be required to facilitate the growing needs of the electric vehicle and stationary grid storage markets. It’s this perfect storm of conditions that have led Clayton Valley in Esmeralda County, Nevada to become a hotspot for lithium exploration and development in the US. This region uniquely hosts the only US-based lithium mine.
ACME Lithium (CSE:ACME,OTC:ACLHF) is a junior mineral exploration and development company focused on acquiring and developing a portfolio of exploration-stage, lithium-containing projects in Nevada. The company’s management team is highly experienced with a strong history of success in building and financing resource companies around the world including the development of lithium-based projects.
ACME Lithium currently operates its Clayton Valley and Fish Lake Valley projects in the mining-friendly Esmeralda County area in Nevada. The properties are strategically located near Albemarle Corporation’s Silver Peak Lithium mine. The Silver Peak lithium mine has continuously produced lithium since 1966, with concentrations as high as +1,000 ppm of lithium.
ACME Lithium’s projects are also located in an area with a developing battery supply chain, including Tesla’s Gigafactory, which sits only 200 miles away. Both of ACME Lithium’s properties have year-round access to expertise, infrastructure, rail and roads, power and water, including favorable weather conditions and logistics.
“We have been working on our exploration plan over the last few months in preparation for what’s going to be a busy summer. We actually have geological targets that are ready to drill test. We’re going to do some additional mapping and sampling of both the Fish Lake Valley project as well as geophysical analysis of our project in Clayton Valley and we hope to drill before year-end on both projects assuming we get the results we’re looking for from the preliminary work. We also continue to look at accretive projects around the globe,” said ACME Lithium CEO Steve Hanson.
The Clayton Valley property has the potential to host lithium brine just like the Silver Peak Lithium mine, while the Fish Lake Valley property has been confirmed to host the same geological processes like those found at the Albemarle mine in Clayton Valley. The presence of lithium brine would provide ACME Lithium with a strong competitive advantage against other companies that typically go after clays or hard rocks. Clay and hard rocks are more difficult to process and create a concentrator product that can be used by technology companies in battery production. The company strongly believes that its properties have the potential to produce lithium under simple metallurgical conditions based on preliminary indications.
In July 2021, the company closed its second and final tranche of oversubscribed non-brokered private placement financing of units at C$2,378,650 at a price of C$0.40 per unit for total gross proceeds of C$3,609,666.80. The company intends to use the proceeds to partly fund exploration on its lithium projects in Nevada for 2021 and general working capital. ACME Lithium is capitalized and aiming to acquire and develop additional projects in the lithium sector and growing electric vehicle sector for 2021 and 2022 to increase shareholder value.
ACME Lithium owns and is under the option to acquire a combined 100% interest in 122 claims totalling 2,440 acres in Clayton Valley. The company also owns 100% interest in 81 lode mining claims totalling 1,620 acres in Fish Lake Valley.
The company’s leadership team has decades of experience in the mining, energy and finance sectors. ACME Lithium also boasts multiple notable industry figures, including Yiannis Tsitos, who has worked for the BHP Billiton group, William Feyerabend, who has direct experience in developing lithium projects and Steve Hanson, who has been involved in multiple successful M&A transactions in the mining and resource sector, including exit strategies with major corporations.
ACME Lithium’s Company Highlights
- ACME Lithium (CSE:ACME,OTC:ACLHF) is a junior mineral exploration and development company focused on acquiring and developing a portfolio of exploration-stage lithium-based properties in Nevada.
- The company’s Clayton Valley and Fish Lake Valley projects are located in the mining-friendly area of Esmeralda County in Nevada. Both properties have year-round access to expertise, infrastructure, rail and roads, power and water including favorable weather conditions and logistics.
- Clayton Valley and Fish Lake Valley are strategically located near Albemarle Corporation’s lithium-producing Silver Peak mine with Clayton Valley potentially hosting the same lithium brine found at Silver Peak.
- ACME Lithium owns and is under the option to acquire a combined 100% interest in 122 claims totalling 2,440 acres in Clayton Valley and owns 100% interest in 81 lode mining claims totalling 1,620 acres in Fish Lake Valley.
- The company plans to begin drilling before the end of 2021 on both projects after additional exploration, including mapping, sampling and geological testing.
- The company’s management team is highly experienced with a strong history of success in building and financing resource companies around the world including the development of lithium-based projects.
ACME Lithium’s Key Projects
Clayton Valley Project
The Clayton Valley project is located 190 miles northwest of the city of Las Vegas in Esmeralda County in Nevada. The property spans 2,440 acres with year-round access to expertise, infrastructure, rail and roads, power and water including favorable weather conditions and logistics. Clayton Valley is located directly to the south of Albemarle Corporation’s Silver Peaks lithium mine that has produced lithium minerals from brines continuously since 1966 including samples as high as 228 ppm lithium. Concentrations up to +1,000 ppm have also been found to occur within specific horizons of fine sediments.
ACME Lithium’s claims on the Clayton Valley project cover basin-fill sediments and aquifers similar to the sediments currently producing brines in the region based on historic drill information and geophysical survey results. There is also promising evidence that the extensive valley growth faults provide an adequate plumbing system to foster brine reservoir accumulation for moving fluids around.
ACME Lithium owns and is under the option to acquire a combined 100% interest in 122 claims including the CC, CCP, JR, and SX Placer claims on the Clayton Valley property. Moving forward, the company plans to continue interpreting geophysical survey data and results as well as develop its drill targets to test indicated and prospective aquifers. The company believes it has the potential to host lithium brines sourced from lithium Tertiary clays accumulated in a basin environment similar to the Silver Peak lithium mine.
Fish Lake Valley
The Fish Lake Valley project is located in Esmeralda County in Nevada. The project spans 1,620 acres with year-round access to expertise, infrastructure, rail and roads, power and water including favorable weather conditions and logistics. Fish Lake Valley is located 24 miles northwest of Albemarle Corporation’s Silver Peak’s lithium mine that has produced lithium minerals from brines continuously since 1966. Concentrations up to +1,000 ppm have been found to occur within specific horizons of fine sediments and the Silver Peak mine includes samples as high as 228 ppm.
Exploration at Fish Lake Valley since 2010 has revealed sites with anomalous lithium values greater than 100 ppm in Tertiary claystone, sediment samples with values approaching 600 ppm lithium in claystone, positive geophysical surveys and lithium within clay-rich horizons. In 2016, initial mapping and sampling completed by the previous operator found lithium values with potentially the same process as at Clayton Valley ranging from 5 to 40 ppm in mudstones. In 2018, the previous operator confirmed that it was, in fact, the same geological process resulting in high lithium values in fine sediments found at the Fish Lake Valley property.
ACME Lithium owns 100% interest in 81 lode mining claims on the property. The company is currently in the process of designing drill testing of lithium claystone to determine the economic potential. Beginning in the third quarter of 2021, the company plans to begin to identify new targets and expand exploration of the property through in-depth mapping, sampling, and geophysics tests.
ACME Lithium’s Management Team
Steve Hanson — Director, President, and CEO
Stephen Hanson has over 28 years of finance and corporate development experience across four continents. Hanson has held executive (CEO), board and advisor positions for numerous private and public companies in mining, alternative energy, oil and gas sectors. Hanson has been involved in a number of successful M&A transactions including exit strategies with major corporations.
Yannis Tsitos — Director
Yannis Tsitos is originally a physicist-geophysicist with nearly 30 years of experience in the mining industry, including 19 years with BHP Billiton group which is one of the biggest mining companies in the world. Tsitos is currently the President of Goldsource Mines Inc., a TSXV-listed company, and sits on several boards as an independent director.
William Feyerabend — VP Exploration
William Feyerabend is a Certified Professional Geologist and a member of the American Institute of Professional Geologists with direct working experience in the exploration and development of lithium projects, including technical reports in Nevada. Feyerabend has worked on projects in the American West, Mexico and South America.
Vivian Katsuris — Director
Vivian Katsuris is a specialist in corporate development, management, consulting, and corporate services. Katsuris has over 28 years of financial experience in the brokerage industry, the North American capital markets and public financings. Katsuris holds director and officer positions with several CSE- and TSXV-listed companies.
Zara Kanji — Chief Financial Officer, and Corporate Secretary
Zara Kanji is experienced in financial reporting compliance for junior listed companies, taxation, general accounting, financial reporting and value-added advisory services for individuals, private and public companies. Kanji is a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of BC and Canada.
INN does not provide investment advice and the information on this profile should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any security. INN does not endorse or recommend the business, products, services or securities of any company profiled.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with ACME Lithium and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
Potential Long-Term Low-Cost Producer of Lithium in Nevada
Electric vehicles aren’t just the hottest trend in Silicon Valley anymore. With wider cultural acceptance in green power alternatives, more accessible technologies and increasingly supportive legislative action, analysts expect this market and the demand for metals that supply it to climb to exponential highs.
In the United States, the government has named lithium a vital component in electric vehicle batteries and a strategic metal of importance. In 2021, President Joe Biden announced a US$2.3 trillion Infrastructure Plan, which outlines the intent to bring electric cars fully to the mainstream with investments of US$174 billion to promote this technology and construct necessary charging stations. This significant spending demonstrates exciting early-mover investment opportunities for lithium production companies and electric industries alike.
Cypress Development (TSXV:CYP, OTCQB:CYDVF) is an advanced-stage mineral exploration company focused on developing its 100 percent owned Clayton Valley lithium project in Nevada, USA. The company’s extensive exploration and development have led to discovering a world-class lithium-bearing claystone resource adjacent to the Albemarle (NYSE: ALB) Silver Peak mine, North America’s only lithium brine operation.
The company’s discovery of the massive resource made Clayton Valley a premium American source of lithium that has the potential to impact the supply of lithium for the fast-growing energy storage battery market.
“We’re in Nevada and we’re in a country that badly needs lithium. We would be the most environmentally friendly project, and the lowest acid consumer. We’re able to eliminate sulfuric acid in our process and that would make us an extremely environmentally friendly, large, inexpensive low cost producer in the heart of the United States.” said Cypress Development CEO Dr. Bill Willoughby.
Clayton Valley Lithium Project, Nevada claims map
The company is using environment-friendly mining alternatives through saltwater and hydrochloric acid instead of the traditional fresh water and sulfuric acid method. This significant proposal could mean Cypress will no longer compete for Nevada’s scarce fresh water supply for Nevada’s freshwater resources for project advancement when it comes time for mining.
In August 2020, Cypress released the results of its pre-feasibility report, which provided a positive snapshot of Clayton Valley’s prospective production scope. Probable reserves stand at 213 million tonnes at 1,129ppm lithium with an average annual production of 27,400 tonnes Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE) and a mine life of over 40 years. After-tax IRR stands at 25.8 percent with a CAPEX of CAD$493 million.
“This PFS is a major milestone for Cypress. These positive results take us closer to our goal of developing a world-class lithium deposit. Cypress’ land position and resources afford us the opportunity for a long-life project with low operating costs and potential to be a significant source of lithium for the United States,” Dr. Willoughby said.
Lithium enriched claystone on surface at Clayton Valley Project, Nevada
The company recently initiated the selection and purchasing of materials to commission a pilot plant and extraction facility for the lithium-bearing claystone from its Clayton Valley Lithium Project in Nevada. The pilot plant is planned to operate at a rate of one tonne/day and will be designed for correct interaction and testing of the major components within the extraction process and assessment of the resulting lithium products.
Cypress Development’s Company Highlights
- Cypress Development is one of a handful of companies that are post-pre-feasibility, advancing towards production. The company is well advanced to become a long-term, low-cost lithium producer with potential expansive international reach.
- The Clayton Valley lithium project in Nevada has an extensive surface deposit in a unique setting adjoining Albemarle’s Silver Peak brine operation.
- Operating out of the prolific Nevada state provides the company with world-class exploration opportunities, mineral-rich geological resources and proximity to the Tesla gigafactory.
- In 2020, the company released strong economic standing with its pre-feasibility study, including a probable reserve estimate of 213 million tonnes at 1,129ppm lithium, IRR of 25.8 percent and CAPEX of CAD$493 million.
- Cypress possesses very favorable economic and geographic positioning in leveraging a present strong demand for lithium, world-class mining jurisdiction and an advanced stage operation in their flagship Clayton Valley lithium project.
- 2021 plans include the commissioning of the Clayton Valley lithium project’s pilot plant, which could see significant tonnage in lithium and clay production. Cypress is also looking to complete its feasibility study based on the data from this pilot plant operation.
- Cypress has acquired 24 unpatented mining claims in Clayton Valley, Nevada bringing the Company’s land holdings to 6558 acres in total.
Cypress Development’s Key Project
Clayton Valley Lithium Projec
The 100 percent owned Clayton Valley lithium project spans 5,430 acres in southwest Nevada and sits immediately east of the Albemarle’s Silver Peak mine, North America’s only lithium brine operation. The asset hosts tremendous potential with Cypress’ discovery of a world-class resource of lithium-bearing claystone adjacent to the brine field to the east and south of Angel Island.
Lithium enriched drill core from Clayton Valley Project, Nevada
Lithium mineralization occurs on the property within montmorillonite clays throughout the sediments to a depth of at least 150 meters. Metallurgical testing has indicated low-cost processing possibilities through leaching with low acid consumption of 126 kg/t and high lithium recovery over 85 percent lithium. This lithium claystone deposit’s unique large flat-lying nature allows for mining with a low strip ratio due to minimal overburden and no interbedded waste, which is hugely economically advantageous for Cypress.
Future plans for the Clayton Valley lithium project include commissioning of the pilot plant, which Cypress proposes could process one tonne a day continuously in 2021. The company also intends to use the data from the pilot plant towards the completion of the project’s feasibility study. Cypress also has the acquisition of water rights for Clayton Valley in the works, which pushes significant advancement in the 2021 and 2022 seasons.
Cypress Development’s Management Team
William Willoughby, PhD, PE
President, Chief Executive Officer & Director
Dr. Willoughby is a mining engineer with 38 years of experience in all aspects of natural resources development. Since 2014, he has been principal and owner of consulting firm Willoughby & Associates, PLLC. Prior to that, he was President and COO of International Enexco Ltd., which was acquired by Denison Mines in 2014. He previously held various positions with Teck (Cominco). Dr. Willoughby has been a Professional Engineer since 1985 and received his Doctorate in Mining Engineering & Metallurgy from the University of Idaho in 1989.
Abraham (Braam) Jonker, CPA, CA
Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Jonker is an accomplished financial leader in the mining industry with almost 30 years of experience. Mr. Jonker has played a pivotal role in several business recoveries and restructurings, was a key team member in management and at the board level in the strategic growth of a number of public companies and has participated, raised and overseen the raising of more than $750 million in the form of equity and debt instruments in the mining industry. He is a registered Chartered Accountant in British Columbia, (Canada), England, Wales and South Africa. He is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants in the United Kingdom and holds a Master’s degree in South African and International Tax from the Rand Afrikaans University, South Africa.
Spiros Cacos, MA
Vice President, Investor Relations
Mr. Cacos has over 20 years of investor relations experience working with public mining companies, ranging from early-stage exploration and development to production. Most recently, Mr. Cacos served as Vice President, Investor Relations for First Mining Gold, a Canadian gold development company listed on the TSX and OTCQX, focused on the development and permitting of the Springpole Gold Project, one of the largest undeveloped gold projects in Canada. His prior roles include serving as Vice President, Investor Relations for Group Eleven Resources Corp., a mineral exploration company focused on advanced stage zinc exploration in Ireland, and as Director of Investor Relations for Great Panther Mining Limited (formerly Great Panther Silver Limited), a primary silver mining company listed on the TSX and the NYSE with two mining operations in Mexico. Mr. Cacos holds a Master’s degree in International Relations and Diplomacy, from the Schiller International University in Paris, France, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada.
Corby G. Anderson, PhD, CEng, FIMMM, FIChemE
Technical Advisor, Metallurgy
Dr. Anderson is a registered engineer with nearly 40 years of global experience in industrial operations, corporate level management, consulting, engineering design, research and education and is an expert in the fields of extractive metallurgy, mineral processing, waste minimization and recycling. He holds degrees of BSc in Chemical Engineering from Montana State University, MSc in Metallurgical…
Adam Knight, PE
Mr. Knight is a professional mining engineer, active in the mining industry since 1994. Before joining Cypress, he worked as a consultant and project manager for Practical Mining LLC of Elko, Nevada. He was Vice President Operations for EMC Metals Corp. until 2015. Prior to that, Mr. Knight worked in various operational capacities for Teranga Gold, Premier Magnesia, and AngloGold. He has experience…
Daniel W. Kalmbach, CPG
Mr. Kalmbach has practiced geology for over 21 years and has held various positions with private and public companies in the field of geology, including greenfield and generative exploration, development, mining, and environmental science. He has supported and/or authored multiple technical reports on mineral properties. Mr. Kalmbach began his career at Barrick Gold Corp. as a production geologist…
Todd S. Fayram
Technical Advisor, Metallurgy
Mr. Fayram brings over 30 years of metallurgical engineering experience to his role which include extensive diversified experience in the consulting and operating fields of various mining and milling operations across the globe. His industrial experience includes project and construction management; planning, design and engineering of precious and base metal heap leach and milling operations; industrial mineral development and operations, project evaluation for prefeasibility, feasibility and bankable documents; and metallurgical testing and interpretation of numerous mineral deposits. Mr. Fayram has also held positions in mine and process development, construction, expansion, start-up, and operation of numerous mines to include Minefinders-Dolores, American Bonanza Copperstone, Americas Silver-Cosala, Middle Tennessee Zinc-Gordonsville, Getty Copper Getty Project and others. Mr Fayram is a MMSA Qualified Professional in Metallurgy and holds a degree of Bachelor of Science degree in Mineral Processing Engineering and a Master of Science in Metallurgical Engineering from Montana Tech of the University of Montana.
*Disclaimer: This profile is sponsored by Cypress Development (TSXV:CYP, OTCQB:CYDVF) . This profile provides information which was sourced by the Investing News Network (INN) and approved by Cypress Development in order to help investors learn more about the company. Cypress Development is a client of INN. The company’s campaign fees pay for INN to create and update this profile.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Cypress Development and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
Significant Land Position In One of the Most Promising and Underdeveloped Lithium Sedimentary Basins in North America
Even with surging global lithium demand, political powerhouses like the US are concerned about its critical minerals supply chains in meeting those growing demands. As the US reviews its critical supply chain risks, lithium mining companies operating in the Americas present the potential to turn the tides of critical mineral market vulnerabilities.
American Lithium (TSXV:LI, OTCQB:LIACF, XFRA:5LA1) is a top TSX Venture 50 company focused on exploring and developing high-quality lithium deposits within mining-friendly jurisdictions throughout the Americas. The company is currently operating its Tonopah Lithium Claims (TLC) project located in the highly prospective mining Esmeralda lithium district in Nevada.
The 100 percent owned TLC project hosts overwhelming operational and geological advantages. Its unique mineralogy, lack of deleterious elements and favorable processing conditions primes project development for fast track potential.
The project boasts excellent existing infrastructure and strategic positioning in the top mining investment jurisdiction of Nevada. The property leverages proximity to paved roads, electricity, water networks and skilled local labor. Additionally, premier solar conditions across the geographic region point to some of the world’s lowest power and natural gas costs.
The TLC project has one of the fastest processing times relative to its peers. Beneficiate samples taken from TLC achieved a 49 percent mass reduction while increasing lithium grade by 66 percent, and subsequent leach testing extracted 96 percent of the lithium from upgraded samples.
A 43-101 compliant technical report for TLC shows a measured and indicated resource of 5.37 million tonnes lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) and another 1.76 million tonnes LCE inferred.
In March 2021, the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Manufacturing Office selected American Lithium as a co-recipient of a grant funding 50 percent of the capital cost for a US$4.5 million lithium extraction hydroxide pilot plant.
This grant provides funding to complete field demonstration of selective leaching, purification and electrochemical production of battery-grade lithium hydroxide precursors from US claystone deposits like the TLC project. This announcement further legitimizes American Lithium as a major player in tackling the US’ domestic lithium supply problem.
The company has a robust capital structure and tight shareholder portfolio. Its market cap stands at US$141.8 million, with key shareholders largely consisting of retail investors, management and insiders. American Lithium currently has zero debt.
The American Lithium management team has a proven history of returning value to shareholders and years of combined experience in mineral exploration, resource development and project management. The company is led by CEO Andrew Bowering, who has founded, funded and grown a number of exploration companies in the last 30 years. Part of this roster are Cap-Ex Iron Ore (now ML Gold), Prime Mining (TSXV:PRYM), and Millennial Lithium (TSXV:ML).
American Lithium’s Company Highlights
- American Lithium is focused on exploring and developing highly prospective lithium deposits across mining-friendly jurisdictions in the Americas. The company currently is operating its high-quality Tonopah Lithium Claims (TLC) project in Nevada, USA.
- The company presents excellent investing opportunities and leverages surging global lithium demand, which is expected to rise exponentially by 2028. It could become a significant player in aiding the domestic lithium supply problem in the US.
- The TLC project boasts strategic positioning in Nevada, ranked the top jurisdiction in the world for mining investment in 2020. The project also sits near the Tesla gigafactory and leverages excellent existing infrastructure.
- TLC hosts unique metallurgical properties with high lithium concentrates, over 90 percent recoveries and fast leaching potential. Operational advantages also include low-cost mining and processing.
- The company continues to expand its robust asset portfolio with the recent acquisition of the Macusani and Fulchani projects connected with Plateau Energy Metals Inc. (TSXV:PLU).
- The company’s leadership has a proven track record of mining and exploration success across years of experience—their depth of management primes American Lithium for significant growth and economic prosperity.
- American Lithium currently has zero debt.
American Lithium’s Key Projects
Tonopah Lithium Claims (TLC) Project
The TLC project spans 6,000 acres and is located five miles from Tonopah, Nevada, a historic regional mining center. The property hosts concentrated lithium mineralization up to 80 meters thick and widespread lateral extension.
In 2019, the company conducted an extensive sampling program that completed 18 reverse circulation drill holes and an additional five core drill holes. This program proved the presence of world-class lithium grades as high as 2,600ppm and laterally extensive mineralization for miles.
The alluvial deposit leverages unique mineralogy that originates from surrounding volcanic tuffs washed into a lacustrine freshwater basin to form sedimentary claystone. This geological profile enhances battery-grade lithium salt production potential and outstandingly short processing times. This perfect storm of mineralogy and operational advantages presents TLC with scalable production prospects compared to similar lithium projects.
The project’s near-term production plan includes completing a PEA into a PFS and submitting a Plan of Operations in 2021. Additionally, the company intends to design and test a pilot facility for later extraction facility construction.
American Lithium’s Management Team
Michael Kobler, B.Sc. — CEO & Director
Over the past 35 years, Michael Kobler has specialized in identifying, acquiring, developing and producing natural resource opportunities throughout the world, as well as overseeing the design and construction of several infrastructure projects. He has served in various roles for early-stage companies, including the chairman, CEO, president, technical advisor, engineer and project manager and has been a founder and a major shareholder in many of these ventures. Kobler has a strong record of success in the exploration, permitting and de-risking of resource projects. In 2005, Kobler was a co-founder and CEO of Osum Oil Sands Corp. He oversaw the analysis and acquisitions of the original oil sands leases that form the core of Osum’s projects Cold Lake and the Saleski carbonates, Alberta.
Andrew Bowering, B.A. — Director
Andrew Bowering is a venture capitalist with 30 years of operational experience and leadership in mineral exploration and development worldwide. He has founded, funded and built teams that have operated numerous companies to pursue precious, base and industrial metals from early exploration to production. Bowering is an owner and founder of Sunrise Drilling Ltd. and has owned and operated drilling companies for the past 20 years. He has held senior management positions in a variety of capacities. He has been responsible for the acquisition and sale of several assets and the raising of upwards of US$250 million in development capital. Bowering has operated and managed programs throughout North and South America and abroad. He is a founder, director and shareholder of Millennial Lithium Corp and other publicly traded companies primarily focused on the battery metals space.
Simon Clarke — Director
Simon Clarke brings 25 years of experience in building companies and implementing successful capital markets and growth strategies focused on mining, energy and energy technology. Most recently, Clarke was the founder, CEO and director of M2 Cobalt Corp., which sold to Jervois Mining Ltd. in June 2019. He offers significant experience and knowledge of the battery metals space and his roles with M2 Cobalt and Jervois Mining involved managing government and stakeholder initiatives relating to the supply of battery metals in several jurisdictions. In particular, he has first-hand experience of the critical minerals initiatives in the United States and the urgent need to develop domestic sources of supply of critical minerals, including battery-grade lithium. Clarke was a co-founder of Osum Oil Sands Corp. who, together with American Lithium CEO Michael Kobler, built a company valued over US$1 billion at its peak. He remains a board observer at Osum and is currently CEO of Apollo Gold Corp.
G. A. (Ben) Binninger — Director
G. A. Binninger is a chemical engineer who brings a wealth of experience in senior management and board roles over a career spanning more than 35 years. Binningerhas held several high-profile roles in various sectors, including mining, energy, materials, environmental and advanced technologies. He has direct experience in lithium and related minerals, having been CEO of Potash Minerals and a member of the Advisory Board of Millennial Lithium. He has also created sophisticated process and services companies for global leaders such as Rio Tinto and ARCO. Binninger will provide critical strategic advice as the development of the TLC Lithium Project continues to evolve in line with continued de-risking and as the need for large-scale, domestic lithium projects becomes more widely recognized.
Graham Ballachey — Vice President of Engineering
Graham Ballachey is a mechanical engineer with a physics and chemistry background and 13 years of experience within various industries, including combustion research, manufacturing, energy optimization, building design, project management, construction management, process development and product development. Ballachey has extensive experience in both experimentation, engineering and design, as well as the management of engineers, consultants, technologists and construction projects of over US$1.2 million in capital. He has successfully procured over $500,000 from government and utility grants.
Developing Economic Lithium in Nevada
The lithium battery market is booming as electric vehicles and green energy continue to rise in popularity. It’s clear that between consumer trends and regulatory shifts, this trend shouldn’t be slowing down any time soon.
Market research from Global Data predicts global lithium demand to more than double, rising from 47,300 tonnes in 2020 to 117,400 tonnes in 2024. For investors wanting to get into the mining sphere, looking to exploration and development companies focused on lithium presents exciting investor opportunities and prospectively high returns.
Iconic Minerals (TSXV:ICM,OTC:BVTEF,FSE:YQGB) is a mineral exploration and development company focused on its several high-quality lithium exploration projects in Nevada, USA. Resource-rich properties, safe mining-friendly conditions and an expert management team prime the company for significant economic growth.
The company’s flagship Bonnie Claire lithium project is 80 percent owned by Iconic and presents very promising resource potential. Early exploration campaigns on the property have revealed high recoveries of lithium values from sediments and additional commercially viable by-products the company can capitalize on. Iconic Minerals is operating it as a joint venture with Nevada Lithium, which obtained a 20 percent interest in March 2021.
The Bonnie Claire lithium property encompassed in the famous Sarcobatus Valley holds 1,155 claims covering over 18,300 acres (28.6 square miles). Operating in the same state as one of Tesla’s facilities, the property leverages excellent infrastructure, strategic positioning and prime mining conditions.
The company’s other highly prospective lithium property is its Smith Creek Valley property in Nevada. The property hosts considerable similarities in geochemical and geological characteristics to the nearby Clayton Valley Basin, where lithium brines are produced. This comparison presents Iconic with exciting development potential and warrants further exploration.
Iconic closed a financing of C$1,000,000 in the beginning of 2021 and announced an additional funding of US$1,600,000 in March from its joint venture partner, Nevada Lithium, which completed Phase One of its Joint Venture Option Agreement with Iconic, for 20 percent interest in the Bonnie Claire. This funding has enabled the accelerated development of the company’s Bonnie Claire lithium project. The funding also pushes the pathway to production forward for the project, which consists of metallurgical testing, groundwork, an extensive drilling program and bulk sampling over the next 12 months. This includes the completion of its Preliminary Economic Assessment in Q2 of 2021. A Plan of Operation for the Bonnie Claire project has also been initiated.
A world-class leadership heads Iconic. The team brings years of expertise in mineral exploration, venture capital markets and corporate finance. Together they have built a highly attractive mining project portfolio prepped for success.
Iconic’s Company Highlights
- Iconic is a mining exploration and development company focused on exciting lithium and gold projects in Nevada, US.
- The company’s flagship Bonnie Claire lithium project hosts excellent lithium extraction and discovery potential and exists in one of the state’s largest landholdings. It has the potential to be one of the largest deposits in the US.
- The company has 80 percent ownership of the Bonnie Claire lithium project, and Nevada Lithium a 20 percent interest.
- Iconic’s other highly prospective lithium property in Nevada is its Smith Creek Valley property. The Smith Creek Valley basin has the potential to mimic the significant successes of adjacent basins and projects in the area.
- Iconic’s expertly curated project portfolio also includes exciting gold properties that host excellent development and discovery potential.
Iconic’s Key Projects
Bonnie Claire Project
The Bonnie Claire property, which sits within the Sarcobatus Valley, is approximately 30 kilometers long and 20 kilometers wide. The surrounding region’s geochemical profile contains quartz-rich volcanic tuffs, anomalous amounts of lithium and salt flats that have yielded lithium values up to 340 ppm at surface and up to 2,500 ppm in the sediments. The current estimates of depth to basement rocks range from 600 to 1,200 meters, with the potential to expand. A 2018 NI 43-101 report defined an inferred resource of 5.37 billion kilograms LCE with an average grade of 963 ppm lithium.
A recent drill program identified four drill holes with 43-101 compliant resources of 28.58 billion kilograms of lithium carbonate equivalent. The drill program that defined the current resource only covered an area of 3 km2, but previous geophysics points at a potentially much larger mineralized area of 27.3 km2.
Drilling to date has shown exciting lithium mineralization systems that could be greater than 600 meters. The company already has significant drilling permits and metallurgy to advance the development and determine the most efficient recovery method for the project.
Smith Creek Valley Property
Smith Creek Valley property sits within Nevada’s Smith Creek Valley, which is over 64 km long in a north-northeast direction and averages 14.5 kilometers in width. Iconic currently controls 808 placer claims totaling 65.4 km2.
The enclosed Smith Creek Valley Basin covers 1,507 km2 and leverages strategic positioning near the Clayton Valley Basin, where lithium brine is produced. The majority of rock weathering into the basin is lithium-rich felsic ash flow tuff. Activity in this geothermal region is believed to be a major contributing factor to developing these economic lithium brines.
Previous work on the property includes a gravity study of the Smith Creek Valley area, which revealed a large gravity under the southern portion of the valley. Additionally, sampling of brine evaporates located northwest of the project site returned lithium values of up to 470 ppm. These findings could mean geothermally heated groundwater is bringing up lithium mineralization to the surface.
Iconic’s Management Team
Richard R. Kern, B.Sc., M.Sc., P.Geo. — President, CEO & Director
Richard R. Kern is a professional geologist with over 25 years of experience in base and precious metal exploration in the US, Central America, South America and Australia. He has been involved in significant discoveries in the Western US and Australia, including recent finds at Fire Creek Mine, Nevada; Moss Mine, Arizona; and Bruner Property, Nevada.
His hands-on, field-oriented mentor management style has been implemented with great success. Kern’s exploration involves a mixture of geology, geochemistry and drilling with state of the art GIS, geochemical and geophysical methods. Kern was a principal in the companies Bristle Cone Ventures LP, Geo Surveys and Sierra Vision Launch LLC. He has held executive and management level positions in companies such as Western North America North Mining Inc., Homestake Mining company, Superior Oil and US Geological Survey.
Kern’s areas of expertise include establishing base and precious metal exploration programs throughout North America, emphasizing Western US, Mexico, Honduras and Panama. He has also managed significant gold and copper exploration projects in Western US, Australia, Mexico and Ecuador, including some minor work in New Guinea, Malaysia, China and Fiji.
Kern has a Masters of Science Degree in Geology from Idaho State University and a Bachelor of Science Degree from Montana State University in Geology.
Richard Barnett, CPA, CGA — CFO & Secretary
Richard Barnett has extensive corporate experience as a CFO, controller and secretary with over 20 years of accounting experience serving both public and private corporations. His experience covers many companies producing oil and gas, resource and explorations, engineering, and research and development. Barnett is a member of the Certified General Accountants of British Columbia. To stay abreast of new business procedures, he has taken extensive business and accounting courses in addition to regulatory courses and workshops. In addition to overseeing the company’s accounting functions, Barnett’s responsibilities include managing the annual audit, budgeting, preparation of financial statements and management discussions and analyses.
Keturah Nathe — Director and VP Corporate Development
Keturah Nathe has 13 years of experience in the corporate finance and management industry, including investor relations, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, corporate development and corporate management as a director and officer.
Huitt Tracey — Director
Huitt Tracey has been involved in the North American venture capital markets for over 22 years. Serving in capacities as stockbroker, director, officer or investor relations consultant, he has provided expertise to numerous companies in industries, including advanced technology, IP, telecommunication, biotechnology, energy and mining. In more than a decade as an Account Executive with brokerage firms that specialize in the corporate financing of American and Canadian ventures, he assisted in the initial public offering and development funding of many now well-established companies that pioneered innovative and disruptive technologies.
Jurgen Wolf — Director
Jurgen Wolf has been involved in the oil and gas industry for more than 26 years, assisting public companies with investor relations and administration. Wolf was educated in Germany and immigrated to Canada in 1953. From 1958 to 1982, he operated and owned pre-cast concrete factories in Calgary and Vancouver, and from 1982 to 2002, he operated and owned J.A. Wolf Projects Ltd., a commercial construction company.
*Disclaimer: This profile is sponsored by Iconic Minerals (TSXV:ICM,OTC:BVTEF,FSE:YQGB). This profile provides information which was sourced by the Investing News Network (INN) and approved by Iconic Minerals in order to help investors learn more about the company. Iconic Minerals is a client of INN. The company’s campaign fees pay for INN to create and update this profile.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Iconic Minerals and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
Vertically Integrated Lithium Production and Processing
The green energy movement is gaining momentum as the demand for electric alternatives to power, transportation and production accelerates. To meet this growing demand, accessibility and supply chain considerations of the critical metals needed to power this revolution are key in transitioning to a more sustainable world.
Analysts expect global lithium demand to reach 1 million tonnes lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) by 2025, from 47,300 tonnes in 2020 to 117,400 tonnes in 2024, owing largely to rapidly increasing electric vehicle production. As the West competes for this limited resource, securing local lithium sources to meet increasing demand will be the key to minimizing environmental impact, transportation costs and carving a place in the future of green energy that is fast becoming a reality.
Rock Tech Lithium Inc. (TSXV:RCK,FWB:RJIB) is an emerging lithium ChemTech company focused on bridging the gap between resource-rich Canada and process-focused Europe. Aiming to be one of the first lithium hydroxide producers outside of China, the company will capture a first-mover advantage in the growing Western lithium market.
Rock Tech has a significant raw material feedstock from its wholly owned, high-quality Georgia Lake spodumene project in Ontario, Canada. Having core operations in Canada strategically positions the company in a jurisdiction with historically safe mining-friendly conditions and one of the cleanest sources of lithium in the world.
The company is pursuing a two-pillar approach that includes the production of sustainably sourced spodumene feedstock at Georgia Lake and the construction of a lithium hydroxide converter in Europe, becoming a critical component of the growing lithium-ion battery supply chain.
“Rock Tech Lithium is building the first-ever lithium hydroxide converter in Europe, playing a key role in the rapid expansion of the lithium-ion battery supply chain and the burgeoning electric vehicle market,” according to company officials. This would make Rock Tech one of the first movers for lithium hydroxide supply in Europe. In collaboration with the world-renowned Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg, commonly known outside Germany as the Freiberg University of Mining and Technology, the oldest university of mining and metallurgy in the world, the company has developed an innovative nitrate process that has the potential to reduce energy consumption and increase by-product revenue streams.
Lithium hydroxide production is planned to start in 2023. The company already has a fully funded pre-feasibility study on its lithium hydroxide converter underway with a PFS at Georgia Lake beginning shortly, which significantly pushes project advancement. As part of the PFS, Rock Tech will be conducting pilot-scale tests to better understand the scalability of its innovative lithium process and provide material for further customer qualification testing.
The company maintains a tight share structure with an anti-dilution approach to minimize financing risk in the future. The shareholder portfolio also includes a deeply connected mix of directors, management and cornerstone shareholders with ownership of just over 70 percent of the outstanding shares. The company presently has approximately 55 million shares issued and outstanding.
Rock Tech Lithium’s management team is a diverse group of entrepreneurs, mining and processing experts with combined track records of successfully building industrial projects globally. Dedication to stakeholder interests and exploration aligned with sustainability and economic development goals primes the company for significant success and growth in the booming lithium and green energy space.
Rock Tech Lithium’s Company Highlights
- Canada-based emerging lithium ChemTech company focused on becoming vertically integrated by developing its high-quality 100 percent owned lithium resource in Georgia Lake, Ontario, and patented processing lithium hydroxide operations in Europe.
- The company is building the first-ever lithium hydroxide converter in Europe, which could significantly aid the current lithium-ion battery supply chain and growing electric vehicle market demands.
- Rock Tech’s innovative nitrate process was a collaborative effort created in partnership with the world-renowned Freiberg University of Mining and Technology in Germany. The innovative process has the potential to substantially save energy and produce greater by-product revenue streams.
- The company intends on beginning lithium hydroxide production in 2023. Completing a pre-feasibility study and finalizing negotiations for financing and subsidies in Canada and Europe are part of its ongoing goals.
Rock Tech Lithium’s Georgia Lake Project
The Georgia Lake lithium project is a spodumene-bearing lithium project located northeast of Thunder Bay, Ontario. Historical exploration on the property and several drill campaigns from 2009 to 2017 have positioned the project for fast-tracked development. The company has also filed a patent for its innovative lithium hydroxide process, which could considerably reduce inherent carbon dioxide emissions and reduce waste costs.
A 2018 NI 43-101 Technical Report based on 351 drill holes reported a compliant resource estimate of 6.58 million tonnes (measured and indicated) and 6.72 million tonnes (inferred). A PEA, on a non-vertically integrated operation, from the same year estimated an 11 year mine life, including open pit and underground operations for the Main Resource Zone with Life of Mine Revenue set at C$1,136 million.
The mining to refining approach places Rock Tech in a unique first-mover position with operations wholly in the West. The sustainable lithium supply from Georgia Lake will be transported to Germany for lithium hydroxide refining and battery-grade output. Rock Tech intends on starting production in 2023 and completing its fully funded pre-feasibility studies for the project this year.
RockTech Lithium’s Management Team
Dirk Harbecke — Chairman of the Board
Dirk Harbecke has more than 25 years of experience as a manager, entrepreneur and investor with international activities in Africa, China, the Middle East, Europe and the United States. He also worked at the Boston Consulting Group and was the co-founder and CEO of ADC African Development Corporation AG (ADC), a German-listed investment group. Under his leadership, ADC became a leading pan-African financial services group. Harbecke holds an MBA degree from St. Gallen University in Switzerland.
Simon Bodensteiner — Director & CEO
Simon Bodensteiner is a mining engineer with over 15 years of professional experience in Germany and Australia. He gained extensive knowledge in corporate, operational and technical roles and worked for both world-class firms, including Rio Tinto and the Boston Consulting Group and junior mining companies. Bodensteiner has a record of success in project management and deals negotiations in open pit and underground environments, focusing on mine strategy improvements.
Brad Barnett — Director & CFO
Brad Barnett has been with Rock Tech Lithium since 2010. He originally joined as an accountant before being promoted to CFO in 2015. Barnett has extensive experience in regulatory filings, compliance and finance. He holds a Master of Science in Corporate Finance, a Bachelor of Business Administration (Honours) and a Diploma in Financial Management (Honours).
Klaus Schmitz — Director
Klaus Schmitz possesses broad and global operational expertise, including comprehensive experience in Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) for both conventional and renewable power generation and industrial plants. He was previously the COO and deputy chairman of the Management Board for Hitachi Power Europe and the Executive president and head of the Power Division for Bilfinger SE. Additionally, Schmitz has served as an advisor for Dussmann, McKinsey, Nippon Denka Kogyosho, Osaka, INP and DSD Steel Group.
Dr. Peter Kausch, Ph.D., M.Sc. — Director
Dr. Peter Kausch holds a Doctorate and Masters of Science degrees in Mining Engineering and has over 40 years of experience in the natural resources sector. He has worked as an advisor to the United Nations Seabed Committee and held various progressive positions with Rheinbraun AG (now RWE Power AG), including managing director of Rheinbraun US GmbH and chairman of Rheinbraun Australia Pty Ltd, Sydney.
Dr. Wolfgang Voigt, Ph.D. — Director
Dr. Wolfgang Voigt is Professor Emeritus in Inorganic Chemistry at the Technische Universität Freiberg, Germany. His research focus for the last 20 years has mainly centered on salt chemistry, particularly lithium chemicals. He has previously been engaged in several brine and hard rock lithium projects worldwide and combines technical knowledge of proven processes with innovative technological concepts for more efficient spodumene conversion.
Dr. Jingyuan Liu, Ph.D. — Technical Advisor
Dr. Jingyuan Liu is a world-leading mining and processing engineer who has overseen the planning, construction, and operation of downstream lithium plants and consulted various high-profile lithium projects worldwide. He holds a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Newcastle, Australia. Dr. Liu is currently Principal of Process Engineering at Wave International, a renowned Australian resource consultancy and engineering firm with a critical focus on lithium projects and further acts as General Manager, Operations for Altech Chemicals Ltd.
RockTech Lithium’s Advisory Board
Prof. Dr. Heinz Riesenhuber — Director
Prof. Riesenhuber served as Member of the German Parliament (Deutscher Bundestag) from 1976 to 2017. He is still acting President of the German Parliamentary Society (Deutsche Parlamentarische Gesellschaft). From 1982 to 1993 he served as Minister of Scientific Research and Technology. Before, he held several management positions in the German Metallgesellschaft AG, formerly one of Germany’s largest industrial conglomerates with over 20,000 employees and revenues exceeding US$10 billion, specializing in mining, specialty chemicals and commodity trading. Riesenhuber served as Director on the Boards of EVOTEC (as Chairman), Henkel, Altana and Mannesmann.
Carl-Peter Forster — Director
Carl-Peter Forster started his career at McKinsey & Company as a management consultant. After four years there, he joined BMW in Munich, where he became a member of the Executive Board in 1999 as head of global manufacturing. In 2001, he joined the European division of General Motors and became Managing Director of Opel and Vice President of GM Europe. In 2006 he became CEO and President of GM Europe and joined the parent company’s Global Automotive Strategy Board. After leaving General Motors, he became Group CEO at Tata Motors.
Norbert Steiner — Director
Norbert Steiner acted as CEO of the German MDAX company K+S Aktiengesellschaft from 2007 to 2017, the largest mining company in Germany. Amongst other topics, he was responsible for Corporate Development, Governance, Risk, and the Business Units Salt, Potash and Magnesium Products. K+S had revenues from 2013 to 2015 between 3.8 billion euros and 4.2 billion euros, operating earnings (EBIT) through the same period between 640 euros and 780 million euros and almost 15,000 employees worldwide, thereof 10,000 in Germany.
Prof. Jens Gutzmer — Director
Prof. Gutzmer is the Founding Director of the Helmholtz Institute Freiberg for Resource Technology and Professor of Economic Geology and Petrology at the Department of Mineralogy, TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Germany. As coordinator and founding CEO he was involved in 2014 and 2015 setting up the EIT Raw Materials, an EU-funded Knowledge and Innovation Community that has become the world’s leading partnership for innovation and education in the raw materials sector.
Disclaimer: This profile is sponsored by Rock Tech Lithium (TSXV:RCK,FWB:RJIB). This profile provides information which was sourced by the Investing News Network (INN) and approved by Rock Tech Lithium in order to help investors learn more about the company. Rock Tech Lithium is a client of INN. The company’s campaign fees pay for INN to create and update this profile.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Rock Tech Lithium and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
First Mover Advantage in Exploring Argentina’s Highly Prospective Lithium Deposits
The international community is in the midst of a battery revolution. Shares of electric vehicle maker Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) surged 695 percent in 2020, making it one of the most valuable companies in the world and showcasing the promising growth narrative of the electric vehicle boom.
The revolution for electric powered cars is not only being led by Tesla but many other car companies including (NYSE:NIO), which is expected to increase production capacity from around 60,000 vehicles a year to 150,000 by the end of this year. Volkswagen (OTC Pink:VWAGY), General Motors (NYSE:GM), Nissan (OTC Pink:NSANY), Hyundai (OTC Pink:HYMTF) and BMW are also investing heavily into the boom.
With the rising movement towards a sustainable and electric-powered world, the lithium that will be needed to support this rapid transition has the potential to become one of the most valuable resources in the world.
At the forefront of this rapid growth is Argentina, the world’s third-largest lithium producer.
Located in the famous Lithium Triangle, this under-explored country is becoming a major host for investor-friendly projects ready for potentially high yielding lithium to power the future of energy.
This includes Alpha Lithium (TSXV:ALLI, OTC:APHLF, Frankfurt:2P62), which could be one of the last and big lithium greenfield project opportunities in this world-famous and highly productive region.
Alpha Lithium is a development company that is focused on highly prospective lithium production of its Tolillar Salar project in Salta province, Argentina.
The company has been able to leverage its 100 percent ownership and work towards mimicking the successes of its highly established lithium producing neighbor. There is promising potential for Alpha Lithium to thrive as the company is surrounded by notable players.
Alpha Lithium’s flagship Tolillar Solar project is located in the northwest region of Argentina near the heart of the Lithium Triangle. Its highly accessible infrastructure connects the project site to Salta and San Antonio de Los Cobres by paved road networks, natural gas resources and a local skilled workforce.
In two geophysical surveying campaigns, the company discovered structural trends that mimicked the Salar del Hombre Muerto horizon. This basin hosts one of the longest operating lithium brine producers in the world with over 25 years of active extraction.
“We consider the geological similarities between the Tolillar Salar and other nearby salars like Hombre Muerto to be very encouraging,” said Brad Nichol, President and CEO of Alpha Lithium.
Additionally, the project’s discovery and exploration plans are especially exciting for Alpha Lithium due to the high producing mining companies situated near Tolillar Salar.
Alpha Lithium presents a unique entry opportunity for investors as an emerging player in the lithium production space.
Global demand for lithium is expected to rise from an estimated 47,300 tonnes in 2020 to 117,400 tonnes in 2024, according to a GlobalData report.
Vinneth Bajaj, a senior mining analyst for GlobalData, said lithium demand will be driven by a surge in EV sales, with annual production expected to go from 3.4 million vehicles in 2020 to 12.7 million in 2024.
Lithium-ion battery production is also forecast to rise from 95.3 gigawatt-hours (GWh) in 2020 to 410.5 GWh over the same period.
Alpha Lithium has recently received promising VES geophysical survey results at its Tolillar lithium project and is preparing permit applications for exploration.
These achievements put Alpha Lithium on track for project expansion and execution of the company’s well-engineered six-phase approach for developing its major emerging lithium asset.
Timeline – A Six Phased Approach
Alpha Lithium’s Company Highlights
- Alpha Lithium is an emerging lithium development company focused on exploring its highly prospective under-developed lithium assets in Salta province, Argentina.
- The company currently owns 100 percent of its salar with over US$10 million in funding.
- The flagship Tolillar Salar project is located near the heart of the Lithium Triangle and is surrounded by multi-billion dollar lithium producers with decades of active lithium production.
- The project site’s infrastructure strategically positions the project nearby accessible electricity lines, paved road networks, natural gas resources and a local skilled workforce.
- Two geophysical surveys have supported theories that the Tolillar Salar property mimicked structural trends of the Salar del Hombres Muerto, one of the world’s longest producing lithium brine basins.
- Alpha Lithium is primed for project expansion and permit acquisition as drilling campaigns are presently underway.
Alpha Lithium’s Key Projects
The Tolillar Salar Project
The Tolillar Salar property covers 27,500 hectares and consists of 10 exploration concessions registered in the Salar de Tolillar basin in Argentina’s Salta province. With a limited exploration history and a strategic location nearby several lithium producing heavyweights, the Tolillar Salar project puts Alpha Lithium in a unique first-mover position for significant mining success.
The Tolillar Salar occupies an internally drained basin with much of the property’s rock formation dating back to the Ordovician period. This geological makeup has created a sediment profile that includes younger continental sediments, salt crusts and evaporite deposits. Due to the property’s close proximity to the Hombre de Muerto Salar, a premier lithium brine basin, the project site is expected to yield high-grade lithium discoveries with low impurities.
Early stage investigations have already revealed lithium concentrations up to 504 mg/L in a sampling campaign from 2015. With drilling licenses approved, Alpha Lithium is ready to commence an advanced drill program.
As of 2020, the company has conducted two substantial geophysics surveying programs and accomplished development goals under budget and ahead of schedule. This trend in lithium exploration shows promise for the future of the project.
Alpha Lithium is located less than 10 miles away from Livent, which has a market cap of over $3 billion and over 20 years of production from the nearby property. The company is strategically located about 10 kilometers from Livent’s high-quality/low impurity Fenix Project.
Immediately adjacent to Livent is South Korean company Posco, with a staggering market cap of around $20 billion. Posco has been very busy in the area, expanding on their lithium project that they bought from Australian lithium miner Galaxy Resources for $280 million in 2018.
Galaxy Resources is nearby as well, and its Sal de Vida project is one of the world’s largest and highest quality undeveloped lithium brine deposits with significant expansion potential.
The Tolillar project area has never been extensively explored yet is uniquely located close to a concentration of major players representing some of the largest producers of lithium who collectively service a large percentage of the growing global demand.
The world is going to need more lithium mines as there is an unprecedented lithium-ion battery demand to fuel electric vehicles and energy-hungry devices.
With a project located in the treasure of the Lithium Triangle in South America, Alpha Lithium could be sitting on what could potentially be a very big lithium discovery.
The management team at Alpha Lithium comprises industry professionals and experienced stakeholders with years of expertise in mining, exploration and capital markets. This well-connected team employs a de-risked proven approach to global lithium mining that primes the company for significant growth.
Alpha Lithium’s Management Team
Brad Nichol, P. Eng., MBA — President & CEO
Brad Nichol is an international entrepreneur who has served and advised corporations on strategy and finance for over 25 years. He has served as both senior executive and director of several public and private enterprises across the finance and resource sectors throughout his career. Through multiple rounds of private and public project financing, he has led successive organizations, initiated and executed dual listings, and established key international and domestic financial relations. Nichols also has significant experience in various business functions including financial, operational, HR, investor relations and legal and regulatory processes.
Previously, Nichol worked at Schlumberger, the world’s largest oil and gas services firm, in various technical, managerial, marketing and sales roles in North America, South America and Europe. Nichol left Schlumberger to pursue his MBA at one of the world’s top-ranked business schools, the London Business School in the UK, and he graduated with honors in 2003. Nichol also holds a BSc. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alberta and has been a registered Professional Engineer since 1994.
David Guerrero — Country Manager
David Guerrero brings almost 20 years of international experience in the mining industry, 10 of which are specifically related to lithium as a specialty product. He has held various roles with mining major Rio Tinto as well as senior management positions with Canadian Lithium 1 and with Australia-based Galaxy Resources, at which he undertook a critical functional role in a recent US$280 million M&A transaction with giant Korean steelmaker POSCO for mineral resources at the Salar del Hombre Muerto, the best quality brine producing district in Argentina. He was also the former president of the Salta Mining Providers Chamber and the AUSCHAM Argentina chapter’s vice president. Guerrero brings indispensable local knowledge and communal leadership in Argentina’s Northern Region.
Nathan Steinke— CFO
Nathan Steinke is a highly respected financial professional with over 15 years of experience for public and private companies in the international resource sector. Since 2003, Steinke’s responsibilities have included all financial aspects of the companies, including debt and equity financing, corporate structure design and management, cash flow management and forecasting, legal and regulatory compliance, stakeholder engagement and reporting, dual listing execution and management, and risk management.
Foster Wilson — Director
Foster Wilson has over 30 years of experience in exploration and development, including reserve drilling and estimation, feasibility studies, mine permitting and development. He has worked in various capacities for Placer Dome, Echo Bay, American Bonanza Gold and different junior exploration companies. Foster also currently serves as President of Mesa Exploration.
Sean Charland — Director & Corporate Secretary
Sean Charland is a seasoned communications professional with experience in raising capital and marketing resource exploration companies. His network of contacts within the financial community extends across North America and Europe. Charland also serves as a Director of Maple Gold Mines Ltd., Arctic Star Exploration Corp., Eyecarrot Innovations Corp. and Voltaic Minerals Corp.
Andrew Hallett — Director
Andrew Hallett is a commodity transaction specialist with over 10 years of cross-commodity investment experience within investment banking, trading, and asset management. Hallett is currently a Partner within Rice Capital Partners, an investment advisor specialized in alternative investments, focusing on upstream metals and mining investments in critical raw materials. Hallett received a BA in Economics from the Augustana Faculty of the University of Alberta and an MSc in Finance from the London School of Economics. He was previously a director within the Commodities Investments group at BTG Pactual Commodities, responsible for all principal investments and structured finance transactions in metals and mining and energy. His prior experience includes commodity investment roles within Global Markets at Deutsche Bank as a senior structured originator and as a director at Natsource Asset Management.
Chris Cooper — Director
Chris Cooper has over 20 years of management and finance experience in the oil and gas, mining and technology industries. Cooper received his B.A. from Hofstra University and his M.B.A. from Dowling College, both in New York State. He has been involved in the creation and funding of several oil and gas issuers, including Choice Resources Corp., an intermediate oil and gas producer, before it was taken over in August 2007 by Buffalo Resources Corp. Cooper also sits on the board of other junior public companies, including Counterpath Corporation, Westridge Resources Inc, Bullion Gold Resources Corp. and Planet Mining Exploration Inc. He has sat on the audit committee of many public companies in several different industry sectors and has a broad, comprehensive knowledge of financial reports.
Darryl Jones — Director
Darryl Jones has over 15 years of capital market experience and an established financial network. Jones was an investment advisor with PI Financial Corp Canada and Raymond James Ltd Canada. He was responsible for raising significant risk capital for growth companies in all sectors, focusing on natural resources.
Pedro Mauricio Torres — Technical Advisor
Pedro Mauricio Torres is a metallurgical Engineer with 17 years of experience in Operation, Process and Projects of Chemical Plants. He has 10 years of experience in SQM SALAR, where he participated in developing the new Lithium Hydroxide Plant, Expansion of Lithium Carbonate Plant to 70,000 tonnes per year. In recent years, Torres has also worked as Process Advisor for Galaxy Lithium, Tianqi Lithium and Eramet Chilean Lithium Salars.
Adrian Sergio Arias — Technical Advisor
Adrian Sergio Arias has over 22 years of experience in the operation of various chemical plants. Arias has dedicated the last seven years to developing technologies and process improvements for the processing of lithium brines. He has also worked in EXAR with the Canadian Lithium American Company to develop the project of Lithium Cauchari and recently took on the position of process manager of Galaxy Lithium SA in the Sal de Vida Project in the Salar del Hombre Muerto.
Dr. Ron Molnar — Advisor, Project Leader – South America
Dr. Molnar has also been selected as the project leader and qualified person (“QP”) to oversee the development of a proposed lithium processing program as part of the Company’s strategic commercialization plans for its growing South American assets. He has been a valued member of the technical team developing and commissioning a first-of-a-kind industrial-scale direct lithium extraction demonstration plant in North America.
Dr. Molnar’s career as a professional metallurgical engineer (Ontario P.E.# 100111288) specializing in solvent-extraction and ion-exchange processes has spanned over 35 years’ experience in hydrometallurgical bench and pilot plant testing. He has built and operated more than 60 pilot plant circuits extracting a wide range of metallic elements and has also designed and built over 20 custom solvent extraction pilot plant circuits for use in specific projects and general testing. His efforts include test program design, management and supervision, pilot plant design, management, and operation (including operator training), as well as data analysis for bench-scale and pilot plant programs.
*Disclaimer: This profile is sponsored by Alpha Lithium (TSXV:ALLI). This profile provides information which was sourced by the Investing News Network (INN) and approved by Alpha Lithium in order to help investors learn more about the company. Alpha Lithium is a client of INN. The company’s campaign fees pay for INN to create and update this profile.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Alpha Lithium and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.
The Next Major Lithium Brine Producer in South America’s Lithium Triangle
Neo Lithium (TSXV:NLC,OTCQX:NTTHF,FSE:NE2) has positioned itself to become one of the world’s most sustainable lithium producers. As transportation becomes increasingly electric, the lithium industry is expected to face a significant surge in demand. Neo Lithium expects to meet this demand with energy-efficient facilities that minimize freshwater consumption and carbon dioxide production, promoting a sustainable future for both surrounding communities and the industry at large.
The company’s 3Q project is located in South America’s Lithium Triangle, an area that produces over 40 percent of the world’s lithium supply. Neo Lithium controls 100 percent of one of the largest lithium brine deposits in the world. Globally, the 3Q deposit hosts the third-highest lithium brine grade and the lowest rate of combined sulfate and magnesium impurities. The project benefits from excellent access, a trained workforce, and significant infrastructure. The area has no inhabitants, including Aboriginal communities.
Waldo Perez, the company’s president and CEO, commented, “3Q is one of the best lithium brine projects under any metric. In terms of grade, it is in the top three worldwide. In terms of size, it is the seventh largest brine project with significant blue-sky potential. Finally, in terms of impurities, it has the lowest impurities of any known salar. These qualities would allow us to develop a low-cost process with a very low capital intensity when compared to other brine projects worldwide.”
In May 2019, GHD Chile and Groundwater Insight Canada completed a 43-101 Independent Technical Report and prefeasibility study (PFS) as a comprehensive geological, technical, operational and economic assessment of Neo Lithium’s 3Q project. Key parameters include 4.0 mt lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) in the Measured and Indicated category, 3.0 mt LCE in the Inferred category and 1.3 mt LCE in the Proven and Probable Reserves category. A full feasibility study is currently underway. PFS results show an after-tax net present value (NPV) of over US$1.8 billion.
The company has formed a strategic partnership with Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) (SZSE:300750), a global leader in the development and manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries. Neo Lithium’s CEO commented, “We are delighted to receive an endorsement from a globally recognized, leading industry player such as CATL as we continue to further advance our strategic objectives at the 3Q project. As we have said many times, we believe it’s extremely important to have a strategic partner with unique knowledge of the expected end-market demand before concluding the definitive feasibility study. We are confident that CATL will help us define the battery-grade quality and certification of the final product to the highest levels.”
Neo Lithium’s management team offers strong domestic lithium experience and has a proven track record in global exploration, resource development, business planning and financing capabilities. All permits have been acquired and the company is currently awaiting EIA approval.
Global lithium consumption is projected to multiply between three to five times over the next decade, placing significant pressure on the battery supply chain and the lithium market as a whole. As global battery producers continue to expand manufacturing operations, Neo Lithium is well-prepared to capitalize on a surge in demand.
Neo Lithium’s Company Highlights
- As transportation becomes increasingly electric, the lithium industry is expected to face a significant surge in demand within the next decade.
- Neo Lithium’s 3Q project is located in South America’s Lithium Triangle, an area responsible for more than 40 percent of the world’s lithium supply.
- The company controls 100 percent of one of the largest high-grade, low-impurity lithium brine deposits in the world.
- Key 43-101 parameters include 1.0 mt LCE in the Measured and Indicated category, 3.0 mt LCE in the Inferred category and 1.3 mt LCE in the Proven and Probable Reserves category.
- The company has completed a prefeasibility study and is currently conducting a definitive feasibility study.
- Neo Lithium has formed a strategic partnership with China-based CATL, a global leader in the development and manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries.
Neo Lithium’s 3Q Project
The company’s 3Q project is hosted in the mining-friendly province of Catamarca, Argentina. Catamarca is the oldest lithium-producing province in Argentina. The project is located in South America’s Lithium Triangle, an area responsible for 40 percent of the world’s lithium supply.
The property is located 4,000 meters above sea level and 30 kilometers from the Chilean border. While many projects in the Lithium Triangle are challenging to access, the 3Q property benefits from direct access to Atlantic and Pacific ports via highway and railroad.
Neo Lithium holds 100 percent ownership of the 3Q property with no option payments. The company expects to complete a definitive feasibility study by the end of the first half of 2021. They are currently shovel-ready and are awaiting EIA approval to begin construction.
The 3Q project now includes fully functional laboratories, production-scale ponds and a processing plant. Production-scale pilot evaporation ponds have been in operation for more thantwo years, resulting in up to 3.6 percent lithium-concentrated brine. The brine has very low impurities and does not consume reagents, significantly reducing operating costs.
Production-scale pumping wells currently generate up to 100 liters per second of high-grade brine. Continuous pump tests show that 3Q is one of the most productive salars in the Lithium Triangle.
The company’s lithium carbonate pilot plant has already achieved battery-grade production with approximately 99.6 percent purity using an innovative six-step process. Twelve batches of lithium carbonate have been produced to date and continuous batches will be produced through the feasibility stage studies.
The company’s goal is to build a sustainable future for lithium mining and development by relying on clean energy sources (including solar power), reducing freshwater consumption and actively supporting local communities.
Neo Lithium’s Management Team
Waldo A. Perez—CEO and Director
Dr. Waldo A. Perez is the discoverer of the 3Q project and founder of Neo Lithium back in 2016. He has over 30 years of academic and industry experience in mineral exploration in South America, particularly in lithium.
Perez was also the discoverer and founder in 2009 of the Cauchari project acquired through Lithium Americas, as well as its president and CEO from inception until the end of the technical work in 2013 resulting in a definitive feasibility study with strong economics.
Previously Perez was involved in multiple discoveries in gold, diamond, zinc and copper deposits as he served as interim president and CEO of Latin American Minerals and senior geologist for Barrick Gold, IAMGOLD, Opawica Explorations and APEX Geosciences.
Carlos Vicens has over 22 years of experience in financial analysis, corporate development, strategy and investment banking including merger and acquisitions and corporate finance. He previously worked as vice president in Scotiabank’s Investment Banking mining team and participated in over $10 billion of M&A transactions and well over $5 billion in equity and debt issuances.
Gabriel Pindar—COO and Director
Gabriel Pindar has over 25 years’ experience as project executive in the development of mining, gas and large scale infrastructure projects in Argentina, Peru, Mexico, Australia, Canada, Guinea, Liberia and the United Kingdom.
Previously he served as GM and head of projects for ArcelorMittal Group and deputy project director for BHP Olympic Dam Expansion. He also held senior project management roles for engineering firms Fluor, Hatch and Engenium.
Constantine Karayannopoulos serves as non-executive chairman of the board of Neo Lithium., a position he has held since 2016. He is also a director of the board of the Canada China Business Council, and a member of the board of advisors of the University of Toronto’s Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry. He holds Bachelor’s and Master’s of Applied Science degrees in Chemical Engineering from the University of Toronto.
Karayannopoulos also serves as Neo Performance Materials’ president and CEO since July 2020. He has worked in senior executive positions at Neo and its predecessor companies for more than 20 years, including as director, president and CEO of Neo Material Technologies from 2005 until the company was acquired in June 2012 for US$1.3 billion.
International Lithium Corp is in the process of exploring and investing in mineral properties located in Argentina, Canada, and Ireland. Its primary strategic focus is on the Raleigh Lake lithium and rubidium project in Canada and on the company’s strategic options on the Mariana project in Argentina.
Exploring the Largest Lithium Portfolio in Quebec
For electric vehicle battery and power production, market researchers predict global lithium demand to more than double, from 47,300 tonnes in 2020 to 117,400 tonnes in 2024. As the West searches for more mineralization to supply the growing demand, companies mining for minerals like lithium and copper can expect to play an integral part in minimizing environmental impact, transportation costs and carving a place in the future of green energy.
Echoing this growing demand, Canada revealed its critical minerals list in March 2021, which included lithium among the 31 minerals deemed vital to the Canadian economy. The critical status of lithium coupled with growing demand strategically positions Jourdan Resources (TSXV:JOR) as a company moving towards focus areas in future Canadian mining policy and investments.
Jourdan Resources operates the largest lithium exploration portfolio in Quebec. Its four assets sit on a significant land position adjacent to the past-producing North American lithium operation, which expects to restart with new owners in the near term. This land position leverages Quebec’s mining-friendly conditions, excellent economic infrastructure and governmental support for electric vehicle-related industries.
The company’s land claims span over 1,800 hectares north of the prolific district of Val d’Or. The property hosts widespread mineralization, exciting discovery potential and drill-ready targets.
Project advancement of a 50 tonne bulk sample and its near-term production status poses exciting opportunities for Jourdan’s future.
“We feel very confident that we know where we are going to drill when we will be starting our drill program,” Jourdan Resources CEO Rene Bharti stated. “Furthermore, we feel that with a very moderate drill program, we will be able to define an initial resource and after a second drilling programme we would like to define a more comprehensive resource sometime in early 2022. The goal of the company, obviously, is to move to production sometime in Q2/Q3 of 2023, which would make us one of the few companies in our geographical region which can point to near term production. We are fortunate to have had a lot of previous work done over the years, on our very large land package.”
Jourdan’s Quebec-based assets have the potential to mimic the successes of Sayona Mining (ASX:SYA,OTC:DMNXF), which also operates out of Val D’Or, Quebec. Sayona recently entered an acquisition agreement with Piedmont Lithium (ASX:PLL,NASDAQ:PLL), a company that has a binding sales agreement with Tesla for the supply of spodumene concentrate.
The company has a strong shareholder structure with ownership consisting largely of management and directors and strategic partners. The capital structure also expresses favorable positioning as the company has slightly over C$500,000 in cash and no debt.
Jourdan Resources’ management team is a diverse group of world-class mining and lithium geophysics experts with combined track records of success. Their dedication to exploration and sustainability and economic development goals primes the company for significant growth in the booming lithium and green energy space.
Jourdan Resources’ Company Highlights
- Jourdan Resources is focused on acquiring, exploring, producing and developing lithium mining properties, currently operating in the world-class jurisdiction of Quebec.
- Jourdan’s prominent land positioning spans 1800 hectares and consists of four key projects: Pressiac – LaCorne Lithium, Vallée Lithium, Baillargé Lithium-Moly and recently acquired La Corne Lithium projects.
- In March 2021, the company exercised an option to acquire a property known as the La Corne lithium property. Jourdan issued 1.5 million common shares of Jourdan Resources to the vendors of LaCorne.
- The company’s land claim map sits adjacent to the North American lithium open-pit mine, which could see 23,000 tonnes of battery-grade lithium carbonate annual production scale upon re-activation.
- Jourdan expects 50 bulk sampling results back from lab processings and metallurgical test work in March 2021. Drill-ready targets are in place and on-track production is expected for 2023.
Jourdan Resources’ Key Projects
Jourdan Land Claim
The land positioning consists of four key projects: Pressiac – LaCorne lithium, Vallée lithium, Baillargé lithium-moly and recently acquired La Corne lithium projects. This land claim sits 60 kilometers north of Val D’Or, Quebec and leverages safe mining conditions, strong local workforce networks and economic infrastructure.
Historical intercepts from previous drill programs include 1.19 percent lithium oxide over 5.50 meters, 1.05 percent lithium oxide over 4.31 meters and 1.03 percent lithium oxide over 4.63 meters. In 2011, Jourdan completed a total of 21 drill holes totaling 4,256 meters. Past exploration efforts place the number of spodumene-bearing dykes in drill holes intersected on the property at estimates of more than 400 centimeters in width to many meters wide.
The adjacent North American Lithium Spodumene Mine project, when re-activated, could see production scales of approximately 23,000 tonnes of battery-grade lithium carbonate on an annual basis.
Additional timeline expectations include geological mapping, trenching, drilling and resource modeling towards a NI 43-101 report. Jourdan projects production permitting and production beginning in 2022.
Jourdan Resources’ Management Team
Rene Bharti — Director, President & CEO
Over a 20-year career, Rene has held several critical roles in public and private companies, including those in the resource, technology and entertainment industry. Bharti co-founded ARHT Media, along with legendary singer Paul Anka. Rene is a former president and CEO at Avion Gold Corp, which Endeavour Mining Corporation later acquired for C$389 million.
Bharti holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Honors) from Queen’s University.
Dr. Andreas Rompel — Chairman & Lead Geologist
Dr. Andreas Rompel is a seasoned exploration professional with nearly three decades of exploration experience in a wide range of roles, including VP of Exploration, project manager, country manager and corporate development executive. Most recently, Dr. Rompel was the president and CEO of Cobalt Power Group. He has also worked in various commodities, including precious metals and base metals, as well as coking coal and cobalt.
For more than a decade, Dr. Rompel evaluated capital projects within Anglo American and was on the board of Spectrem as technical director. He has worked in many countries on several continents and has well-developed multi-linguistic skills.
Blake Hylands — Director
Blake Hylands is a professional geologist with experience in gold, base metals and iron ore in Canada and internationally. He has held technical and corporate development positions for several junior mining companies, most recently for Sulliden Mining Capital and Coastal Gold Corp. Hylands is also the VP of Exploration for Troilus Gold Corp.
Hylands holds a BSc in Geology from Western University in London, Ontario.
Aaron Atin — Corporate Secretary
Aaron Atin is a corporate and securities lawyer with securities, mergers and acquisition and corporate finance experience. Atin is currently a legal consultant to various Toronto Stock Exchange, NEO, TSXV and CSE-listed companies in various sectors, including mining, financial services, agriculture and technology. He began his legal career as a corporate law associate at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Waterloo and a J.D. from the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law.
Maxime Lemieux, LLB, Director
Maxime Lemieux is part of the corporate group at McMillan LLP in Montréal. He is primarily acting for public companies, agents, securities distributors and underwriters in Canada, to which he offers legal counseling services on public and private offerings and mergers and acquisitions.
He has been a member of the Quebec bar since 2006, completed an LL.L and an LL.B at the University of Ottawa and an MBA at Laval University and the Fachhochschule Kiel in Germany.
Deborah Battiston, CFO
Deborah Battiston has over 15 years of accounting, tax and corporate finance experience in Canada and Europe. From 2007 to 2010, she was the CFO of CD Capital Partners, a private real estate firm focused on developing mixed-use retail and office real estate in Russia, Ukraine and Romania. From 2001-2008, she was the CFO of MAVA Investment Ltd., a private equity firm based in Budapest, Hungary.
First Mover Advantage for Lithium in Southeast Mongolia
ION Energy Ltd. (TSXV:ION,OTC:IONGF) is a battery metal exploration company focusing on lithium exploration in southeast Mongolia. The company holds one of the largest mining licenses in Mongolia and is leveraging its first-mover advantage to explore an area of more than 80,000 hectares containing lithium brine and spodumene targets.
The global lithium market was worth US$2.86 billion in 2017 and is projected to grow to US$5.88 billion by the end of 2025, according to data by Adroit Market Research. Lithium’s growth is being driven by demand from the green energy and electric vehicle markets. Rising concern over global carbon emissions is leading to the rising adoption of renewable energy generation technologies including electric vehicles and large-scale energy storage technologies, all of which require massive amounts of battery metals like lithium, cobalt and nickel. The International Energy Agency projects the number of electric vehicles on the road to reach 125 million by 2030, with each one containing a large lithium-ion battery. Battery-producing megafactories, including Tesla’s famous giga-factories, are being built around the world, with 91 such facilities expected to be operational by 2028. Governments around the world, including the United States and Chinese governments, are working to secure supplies of battery metals to prepare for a green energy future.
The Mongolian government has granted ION Energy one of the largest exploration licenses in the country for the company’s Baavhai-Uul project in the Sukhbaatar province. The 81,758 hectare asset contains high-grade near-surface lithium brines of up to 810ppm with low potassium and magnesium ratios, which makes for better crystallization of the lithium hydroxide. ION Energy is the first company to be granted a license for this asset, which has never been mined previously. Previous exploration work has been conducted on the project by the Technical University of Mongolia and the Mongolian government.
ION Energy’s management team has extensive experience working with the Mongolian government, which has been largely supportive of mining exploration within the country. The Mongolian economy is largely commodity-based and is considered by the World Bank to be stable and growing. The country’s GDP reached US$13.01 billion in 2018 with a growth rate of approximately six percent. Mongolia enjoys social and political stability and offers a low cost of doing business for international miners. The country is equipped with high-quality and reliable mining and transportation infrastructure. Mongolia’s advantageous position in East Asia puts it close to major lithium markets like China, Korea, Japan and Russia.
The Mongolian government signed a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) with Canada in 2017. The agreement established a legal framework under which Canadian investors working in Mongolia are offered greater predictability and certainty for their investments.
The geology of Southeast Mongolia mirrors that the famed Lithium Triangle of South America. Like the Lithium Triangle, the region is an endorheic basin contained within a low precipitation zone.
Ion Energy’s Company Highlights
- 81,758-hectare lithium brine property in southeast Mongolia
- Holder of one of the largest mining licenses in Mongolia
- 25 percent of the company owned by management
- Lithium market boosted by rising electric vehicle and green energy demand
- Accomplished management team with extensive experience working with the Mongolian government
Baavhai-Uul Project, Mongolia
ION energy’s Baavhai-Uul asset is located approximately 800 kilometers southeast of Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia and 200 kilometers south of Baruun-Urt, the capital of Mongolia’s Sukhbaatar province. The property is located about 200 kilometers from the Chinese border. The property totals approximately 81,758 hectares in size. The area is well connected, with paved roads connecting all population centers in the area to the capital city. Gravel roads lead directly to the Baavhai-Uul property. Local towns could supply the project with inexpensive labor, while supplies and equipment can easily be obtained from Ulaanbaatar.
Exploration work by the Mongolian University of Science and Technology
Exploration work has been conducted on the property by the Mongolian University of Science and Technology. The university’s work consisted of two pits drilled by hand auger in the lake bottom collected in 20 cm intervals and has indicated the presence of high-grade near-surface lithium brines. Sampling results by the university indicate lithium content in brines of up to 811 ppm lithium with an average of 462.64 ppm lithium. The samples were assayed by the independent certified assay lab Khanlab LLC located in Ulaanbaatar.
Ion Energy’s Management Team
Ali Haji, BSc—CEO, Director
Ali Haji is the Director of Antler Hill Mining Ltd and Spirit Banner II Capital Corp. Haji serves as an advisor to ATMA Capital Markets Ltd and Steppe Gold.
Mr. Haji has extensive knowledge of the financial services sector after having spent over 13 years in the Asset Management Industry performing strategic and process improvement roles. He started his career as a technology analyst at Invesco Ltd. in 2006 and advanced into various roles including Technology Risk, Controls, Program Management, and Process Improvement with international assignments involving mergers and acquisitions in Hong Kong, U.S.A and Australia. Most recently, he was also a principal contributor to the creation of a Center of Excellence in London, England for Invesco Ltd. Mr. Haji attended The University of Western Ontario and holds a BSc in Computer Science.
Matthew Wood—Chairman of the Board, Director
Matthew Wood is a mineral resource explorer and developer with over 25 years of global industry experience in mining and commodities investments. He serves as the Chairman of Steppe Gold (TSX:STGO). He was a Founding Chairman of Avanco Resources, which sold in March 2018 for AUD$440 million and Hunnu Coal, which sold for USD$500 million in 2012.
He has managed investment deals in diamonds, coal, energy, ferrous metals, base and precious metals, and other commodities. His unique skills in technical and economic evaluation of resource opportunities have resulted in a record of nurturing resource deals from early stage, to market listings and exit strategies for his investors.
He was formally the founder and executive Chairman of Mongolian coal company, Hunnu Coal Limited. Hunnu Coal was IPO of the year for all sectors on the ASX in 2010, and its sale for approximately A$500M in 2011 to Banpu PCL was recognized as the Mines and Money 2012 Deal of the Year. Mr. Wood has founded and been involved in many other resource companies and investments through the years.
He has extensive experience and many key relationships in Mongolia and was recently awarded the Order of the Polar Star, the highest state honor that can be awarded to a non-citizen of Mongolia.
Bataa Tumur-Ochir —Director
Tumur-Ochir is a Mongolian citizen and Executive Director of Steppe Gold LLC. At Steppe Gold, he is responsible for new business acquisitions, development and government and community relations. Mr. Tumur-Ochir is also responsible for daily operations in Mongolia. Mr. Tumur-Ochir is currently a director at GCD Mongolia and CEO and executive director of ASX listed Wolf Petroleum.
Under his guidance, Wolf Petroleum was awarded the “Operator of the Year Award” from the Petroleum Authority of Mongolia, and today, Wolf Petroleum is recognized as the fastest-growing petroleum exploration company with the largest petroleum exploration acreage in Mongolia. Mr. Tumur-Ochir holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and graduate certificates in international business and marketing from Australia and Singapore.
Mr. Tumur-Ochir has strong relationships at all levels of government in Mongolia and was recently appointed independent advisor to the Ministry of Mining and Heavy Industry responsible for foreign investment and promotion.
Aneel Waraich, MBA—Director
Aneel Waraich is the EVP and Director of Steppe Gold, Director of Antler Hill Mining Ltd, CEO of Spirit Banner Capital Corp, Founder of ATMA and ATMACORP with experience in investment banking at Dundee.
Waraich is the founder of ATMA Capital Markets and ATMACORP LTD and a financial services professional with progressive experience in both the asset management and corporate finance businesses.
Waraich focuses primarily on advising public and private companies in the Natural Resources sector. In previous roles at Goodman and Company Investment Counsel and Dundee Capital Markets, he worked as an analyst valuing private companies. Most recently Aneel worked as an investment banker focusing on deal origination, going-public transactions and financings for both public and private companies in the resource and technology sectors.
Enkhtuvshin Khishigsuren has over 30 years of Mongolian mineral exploration experience. He has focused his expertise on the precious metals exploration sector resulting in successes for numerous companies. Mr. Khishigsuren spent the first 10-12 years of his career at Central Geological Expedition doing regional geological mapping in various areas of Mongolia, followed by 7 years as senior exploration manager on exploration of precious metal in Mongolia for Harrods Minerals, privately funded exploration company.
Since 2005 he has been running his own company Erdenyn Erel and conducting exploration and consulting services to Western exploration and mining companies. Mr. Khishigsuren has been responsible for identifying targets and properties. His knowledge and experience have resulted in the discovery of several prospective gold and copper deposits in Mongolia; such as the multimillion ounce gold deposit Olon Ovoot, a large molybdenum porphyry deposit Zuun mod and the Shand copper porphyry deposit near Erdenet copper mine.
John McVicar—Chief Financial Officer
Mr. McVicar brings more than 30 years of international business experience in Management Consulting and Finance. His previous roles include Consulting Partner at a Big 4 firm, CFO of a TSX-listed company and several regional finance leadership roles with large US and Canadian multinationals in Canada, the US, South America and Asia. Mr. McVicar is a CPA, CA and graduated with an MBA from Duke University and a B. Comm from Queen’s University.
The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with ION Energy Ltd. and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.