http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au Proactiveinvestors RSS feed en Wed, 13 Dec 2017 12:40:24 +1100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Neometals progresses downstream integrated lithium supply chain strategy ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188687/neometals-progresses-downstream-integrated-lithium-supply-chain-strategy-188687.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) is making progress with its downstream integrated lithium supply chain strategy aimed at serving automotive and grid storage applications.

The company has started wet commissioning of a pilot plant in Canada for its Lithium Battery Recycling Project.

Vendor test work is progressing in the U.S. for Neometals’ Lithium Hydroxide Project.

The third string in the strategy is a Lithium Titanate Research Project and product from optimisation test work has been sent for testing in the U.S.

Strong demand growth for lithium

Lithium prices are at historically high levels due to sustained strong demand growth driven by electric vehicles and energy storage markets.

Market demand is forecast to grow significantly through to 2025 and is likely to continue to challenge supply.

This growth has stimulated construction of new processing capacity, particularly in hard rock conversion in China.

Neometals has developed a strategy in a bid to take advantage of market forecasts.

The company is co-developing technology to economically recover high-value cobalt and other compounds that can be recycled within the battery manufacturing chain.

READ: Neometals admitted to Nasdaq International Designation

Most of the fabrication and construction of a 100 kilogram per day mini-max pilot plant in Montreal, Canada, has been completed.

Commissioning of the first sections of the plant is underway and campaigns to process the major commercial battery chemistries will begin in the first quarter of 2018.

The pilot plant will also test batteries supplied by consumer electronics manufacturers and car makers.

Assessing lithium processing facility

The Lithium Hydroxide Project aims to utilise product from Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia, in which Neometals has a 13.8% interest.

The company is progressing the assessment and development of a lithium processing facility near Kalgoorlie, close to the Mt Marion operation.

Kwinana, near Perth, is also being investigated as a potential site.

Vendor equipment and metallurgical test work is progressing in North America and results have been positive.

Work is developing on the flow sheet design, process design criteria and mass balance basis for a proposed front end engineering design (FEED) study.

A report from this test work is scheduled for delivery in mid‐February 2018.

If it proceeds, the FEED study report is expected in late 2018 and will facilitate an investment decision for the project.

READ: Neometals lodges patent with eye on lithium-ion batteries

Neometals has applied for a provisional patent for the Lithium Titanate Research Project to protect the intellectual property.

It has also conducted optimisation testing through CSIRO.

Product from this work has been sent for testing in the U.S. and results are expected in January 2018.

Anode material can replace graphite

Lithium titanate is an anode material that can replace graphite.

The primary advantage over graphite is the surface area of the anode is around 100 square metres per gram in contrast to typically three square metres for graphite.

Chris Reed, managing director, said: “2017 has been a successful year for the company and has seen us advance our strategy to maximise the value of our future lithium offtake through downstream processing and battery recycling.

“We are engaged in discussions with parties across the entire lithium battery supply chain to commercialise our downstream projects and are confident of delivering on our strategy with strong industry players.”

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Wed, 13 Dec 2017 10:12:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188687/neometals-progresses-downstream-integrated-lithium-supply-chain-strategy-188687.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals admitted to Nasdaq International Designation ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188397/neometals-admitted-to-nasdaq-international-designation-188397.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has been admitted to the Nasdaq International Designation which supports companies in innovative industries.

The company’s Level 1 American Depository Receipts (ADRs) have traded in the US over the counter (OTC) market since 2010.

As the ADRs have met requisite standards, Neometals has been admitted to the Nasdaq International Designation.

READ: Neometals shares continue to rise on titanium assays

The program is for non US-based companies that have Level 1 ADRs or shares that trade in the OTC market.

It provides member companies with full service from Nasdaq including investor relations and greater access to US investors.

Members come from Australia, Japan, Germany, Brazil, Canada, the UK and the Netherlands.

READ: Neometals' shares spike on positive investor sentiment in lithium sector

Neometals wholly owns the Barrambie Titanium Project and has a 13.8% interest in the Mt Marion Lithium Project, both in Western Australia.

The company has also developed technology to enhance production of its specialty metals.

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Thu, 07 Dec 2017 09:01:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188397/neometals-admitted-to-nasdaq-international-designation-188397.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals shares continue to rise on titanium assays ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186983/neometals-shares-continue-to-rise-on-titanium-assays-186983.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has received another set of drilling results from its high-grade Barrambie Titanium Project located in Western Australia.

Results are from 20 holes drilled within the titanium oxide starter pit area for the purpose of collecting samples for metallurgical testwork.

Significant high-grade intercepts returned from recent metallurgical drilling included 71.0 metres at 34.1% titanium oxide and 0.86% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole.

The aim of the test work underway at Barrambie is to produce concentrates for the ‘Neomet Process’ Pilot Plant in Canada and to evaluate fast-tracking a direct shipping ore operation.

Barrambie hosts one of the world’s highest grade titanium deposits with a JORC resource of 47.2 million tonnes grading 22% titanium oxide.

Drill result details

During the recent July quarter, 20 metallurgical testwork holes were drilled within the starter pit area.

Previously, the results for only the top 40 metres of each hole were released, corresponding to the planned depth of the initial starter pits.

Drill results from the total hole lengths include:

- 71.0 metres at 34.1% titanium oxide and 0.86% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole;
- 71.0 metres at 33.1% titanium oxide and 0.69% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole;
- 71.0 metres at 32.4% titanium oxide and 0.82% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole;
- 71.0 metres at 32.1% titanium oxide and 0.72% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole;
- 71.0 metres at 32.3% titanium oxide and 0.75% vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole; and
- 71.0 metres at 31.9% titanium oxide and 0.59 % vanadium pentoxide from surface to end of hole.

Neomet Process testing in Canada

The beneficiation test work will be completed this month and the majority of the concentrates will be freighted to Neometals’ laboratory in Montreal, Canada.

The concentrates will then be used to commence pilot plant testing of the Neomet Process.

The Neomet Process is an extraction process that Neometals plans to licence to titanium industry partners.

The company plans to commence pilot testing in the June quarter 2018 after the lithium-ion battery recycling pilot campaign, which will be commissioned in December.

Direct shipping ore (DSO) operation

Neometals also continues to evaluate fast-tracking the start-up of Barrambie as a DSO operation.

The company has delivered a representative sample of Barrambie ore from the planned starter pits to China for evaluation by a titanium processor.

If the customer performance tests of the ore are positive and logistic studies show it is viable, Neometals will negotiate the sale of ore, on terms that recognise the contained value in the ore, to selected processors in the titanium supply chain.

A draft mining proposal for small operation has been lodged to cover extraction of a bulk sample of up to 50,000 tonnes.

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Thu, 09 Nov 2017 15:32:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186983/neometals-shares-continue-to-rise-on-titanium-assays-186983.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals' shares spike on positive investor sentiment in lithium sector ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185296/neometals-shares-spike-on-positive-investor-sentiment-in-lithium-sector-185296.html Neometals Ltd's (ASX:NMT) shares have been getting snapped up by investors recently, and the company has received a speeding ticket from the ASX in the form of a price and volume query.

The company's shares hit an intra-day high of $0.37 yesterday, up 8.8% from the previous session close.

The ASX also noted an increase in volume over recent days.

Neometals noted back to the exchange that it is not aware of any information not released that could explain the recent trading activity, but did however quote:

"The company notes that there has been a general increase in market sentiment for companies in the lithium sector in recent weeks with a number of companies across the sector experiencing significant share price appreciation."

Neometals currently holds a 13.8% stake in the globally-significant Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

Minerals Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) (43.1% stake) is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

The final partner is Ganfeng Lithium (43.1% stake), which is China’s largest, most diverse lithium producer.

World-class titanium exposure

The portfolio of Neometals also includes the Barrambie Titanium Deposit in Western Australia, which is one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits.

Test work recently commenced.

READ NOW: Neometals commences test work at one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits

Adding further interest to the company, is its exposure to the lithium-ion batteries sector.

Neometals recently lodged an Australian provisional patent application associated with its technology to produce lithium titanate oxide for use in lithium-ion batteries.

Neometals has a dedicated subsidiary, Neomaterials Pty Ltd, to hold its interest in the intellectual property and patent applications for this advanced battery material process.

Test work results indicate performance of the material in the larger scale pouch-cell was superior to the commercially available lithium titanate, and re-confirmed in multiple coin-cell tests.

All tests had NCM cathode and LTO anode.

Neometals is well-funded with $46.5 million in cash at the end of June 2017.

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Tue, 10 Oct 2017 09:19:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185296/neometals-shares-spike-on-positive-investor-sentiment-in-lithium-sector-185296.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals lodges patent with eye on lithium-ion batteries ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/184038/neometals-lodges-patent-with-eye-on-lithium-ion-batteries-184038.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has lodged an Australian provisional patent application associated with its technology to produce lithium titanate oxide for use in lithium-ion batteries.  

Neometals has a dedicated subsidiary, Neomaterials Pty Ltd, to hold its interest in the intellectual property and patent applications for this advanced battery material process.

Test work results indicate performance of the material in the larger scale pouch-cell was superior to the commercially available lithium titanate, and re-confirmed in multiple coin-cell tests.

All tests had NCM cathode and LTO anode.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented:

"The lodgement of this patent application is consistent with Neometals’ IP strategy to protect its competitive advantage once the commercial viability emerges.

"Our goal is to justify the addition of a LTO circuit to the Lithium Hydroxide project to further multiply the value of our lithium units."

Neometals is undertaking optimisation testwork at the CSIRO to accelerate the commercialisation of this advanced battery material technology.

The program is expected to be completed by the end of the December quarter and will produce product for evaluation by battery producers.

READ NOW: Neometals commences test work at one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits ]]>
Fri, 15 Sep 2017 00:25:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/184038/neometals-lodges-patent-with-eye-on-lithium-ion-batteries-184038.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals enters first sub-licence agreement for the Neomet Process technology ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183947/neometals-enters-first-sub-licence-agreement-for-the-neomet-process-technology-183947.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has achieved a milestone, following its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alphamet Management Pty Ltd, entering into the first sub-license agreement for the application of the Neomet Process.

The patented, environmentally friendly process technology has broad applications in the recovery of a wide range of metal oxides from chloride leach solutions.

Next steps

Subject to satisfactory pilot testing, the agreement will see the Neomet Process technology used at a steel mill in the Republic of Serbia to recover zinc, copper, iron, silver and lead from a new modular EAF Dust Processing plant.

The company sees this agreement as a solid step forward in its strategy to develop and hold a portfolio of royalty interests from sub‐licencing the technology in addition to deploying the process on its Barrambie Titanium Project.

READ NOW: Neometals commences test work at one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits

Neometals has a strategic alliance with the Australian Engineers, Sedgman Limited, to provide the platform for the commercialisation of the technology, at no cost to Neometals.

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Thu, 14 Sep 2017 13:10:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183947/neometals-enters-first-sub-licence-agreement-for-the-neomet-process-technology-183947.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals commences test work at one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183872/neometals-commences-test-work-at-one-of-the-worlds-highestgrade-titanium-deposits-183872.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has commenced pilot‐scale beneficiation test work as it advances development plans for the Barrambie Titanium Deposit, which is located in Western Australia.

Barrambie is one of the world’s highest‐grade titanium deposits.

The aim of the test work is to produce concentrates for the ‘Neomet Process’ Pilot Plant and for a direct shipping ore operation.

Recent metallurgical drilling delivered: 40.0 metres at 34.6% titanium dioxide and 0.72% vanadium from surface; 40.0 metres at 34.4% titanium dioxide and 0.66% vanadium from surface; and 40.0 metres at 34.1% titanium dioxide and 0.70% vanadium from surface.

The revised Neomet Process will undergo pilot trials in late 2017.

Neometals plans to licence the Neomet Process to titanium industry partners.

The license will be conditional on the entry into a long‐term, take‐or-pay off-take agreement, for Barrambie titanium concentrates.

Metallurgical pilot test work details

Neometals has commenced the pilot scale beneficiation test work at Nagrom Metallurgical laboratories in Perth.

The concentrate that will be produced will be supplied to Chinese titanium producers and for the pilot scale test work of the Neomet Process at the company’s facility in Montreal, Canada.

Analysis

Neometals has mapped out a clear plan at Barrambie, starting with the above pilot scale beneficiation test work.

This will be followed by a pilot scale hydromet test work in the December quarter 2017, and then decisions on direct shipping ore, toll treatment and / or off-take in the March quarter 2018.

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Tue, 12 Sep 2017 20:20:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183872/neometals-commences-test-work-at-one-of-the-worlds-highestgrade-titanium-deposits-183872.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals passes $6M buy-back milestone ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183400/neometals-passes-6m-buy-back-milestone-183400.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) continues its on-market buy-back, and has now purchased over 21.5 million shares for circa $6 million.

Neometals currently holds a 13.8% stake in the globally-significant Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

Minerals Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) (43.1% stake) is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

The final partner is Ganfeng Lithium (43.1% stake), which is China’s largest, most diverse lithium producer.

Neometals updates from Mount Marion following Mineral Resources results ]]>
Tue, 05 Sep 2017 09:02:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/183400/neometals-passes-6m-buy-back-milestone-183400.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals updates from Mount Marion following Mineral Resources results ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182576/neometals-updates-from-mount-marion-following-mineral-resources-results-182576.html Neometals Ltd (ASX: NMT) currently holds a 13.8% stake in the globally-significant Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

Minerals Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) (43.1% stake) is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

The final partner is Ganfeng Lithium (43.1% stake), which is China’s largest, most diverse lithium producer.

Neometals comments on Mineral Resources FY17 results

Neometals noted the announcement by MIN of its full-year financial results for FY17.

MIN's announcement reports EBITDA per tonne for Reed Industrial Minerals Pty Ltd (RIM), the project vehicle for the Mount Marion Lithium Project, which equates to $14 million during the second half of FY17 and forecasts approximately $72 million for the first half of FY18.

Neometals 13.8% (reflecting NMT’s shareholding in RIM) of the 2H FY17 EBITDA is circa $2 million and of the 1H FY18 forecast EBITDA would be around $10 million.

RIM has a positive obligation to distribute profits to the maximum extent.

However, the receipt by NMT of any earnings achieved by RIM will be subject to the RIM board resolving to pay dividends to its shareholders, having regard to (among other things) tax obligations, the future capital requirements of the business and the repayment of outstanding shareholder loans.

Neometals outlined that it was not involved in preparing the information regarding RIM released by MIN.

However, Neometals added that it is not aware of any reason why the information is incorrect as released by MIN, the operator of the Mount Marion Lithium Project (via its wholly owned subsidiary, Process Minerals International Pty Ltd).

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Thu, 17 Aug 2017 13:56:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182576/neometals-updates-from-mount-marion-following-mineral-resources-results-182576.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals approaches buy-back milestone of 20 million shares ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182344/neometals-approaches-buy-back-milestone-of-20-million-shares-182344.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has now bought over 19.5 million shares back on-market for a consideration of circa $5.8 million, as the company utilises its strong cash position.

Under the current program, another 8.6 million shares can be bought back.

Neometals currently holds a 13.8% stake in the globally-significant Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

Minerals Resources ltd (ASX:MIN) (43.1% stake) is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

The final partner is Ganfeng Lithium (43.1% stake), which is China’s largest, most diverse lithium producer.

Neometals looks to build technology portfolio

Neometals is also aiming to fast-track evaluation of proprietary recycling process to recover Lithium/Cobalt/Nickel from Lithiumion batteries.

The company also has a strategy to build a royalty portfolio from the commercialisation of Neomet Process with Sedgman and Andritz.

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Mon, 14 Aug 2017 09:54:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182344/neometals-approaches-buy-back-milestone-of-20-million-shares-182344.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd approaches $5 million mark in share buy-back ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/181012/neometals-ltd-approaches-5-million-mark-in-share-buy-back-181012.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) continues its share buy-back and has now purchased circa 17.3 million shares on market for $4.86 million.

The program allows for a maximum of 28.15 million shares, leaving 10.8 million still available to be purchased.

Mt Marion

Neometals recently determined that the retention of its 13.8% equity stake in the Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia is in the best interests of shareholders.

The decision comes after a period of improved offtake pricing structure and levels, and the achievement of significant project milestones.

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay off-take agreement for Mt Marion.

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Tue, 18 Jul 2017 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/181012/neometals-ltd-approaches-5-million-mark-in-share-buy-back-181012.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd opts to hold onto lithium mine equity ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180562/neometals-ltd-opts-to-hold-onto-lithium-mine-equity-180562.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has determined that the retention of its 13.8% equity stake in the Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia is in the best interests of shareholders.

The decision comes after a period of improved offtake pricing structure and levels, and the achievement of significant project milestones.

Neometals believes that these factors have materially enhanced the project’s intrinsic value.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “Since we originally offered to sell the stake in Mt Marion, we’ve been impressed by the production performance from site which, combined with the enhanced pricing structure and levels, makes a compelling case for retaining the stake and offtake rights.

“We will now focus on developing the next step in the lithium value chain, a downstream processing plant to produce lithium hydroxide, the key component in cathode chemistries for the electric vehicle and stationary storage battery revolution.”


Mt Marion

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay off-take agreement for Mt Marion.


Reasons for holding onto equity

Neometals has opted to end its sales process for its 13.8% equity stake in Mt Marion for a number of recently enhanced valuation factors.

In order of impact to valuation, they are:

- Recent re-negotiations of the offtake pricing mechanism with Ganfeng, which will deliver pricing linked to international lithium carbonate and hydroxide prices rather than bilateral spodumene market prices providing less variability in long-term pricing;
- Retention by the company of its binding offtake option rights for a minimum of 12.37% of production from Mt Marion from February 2020;
- The ramp-up in plant performance and product quality exceeding expectations with the shipment of 30,055 tonnes in May and late June/early July shipments totalling 50,000 tonnes; and
- Potential commitment to modify the process plant to facilitate production of all 6% lithium oxide spodumene concentrate, removing the discounted 4% lithium oxide product.


Possible demerger

Neometals has engaged advisers to assist it in considering demerging and separately listing the company’s technology and titanium assets.

The company will keep the market informed as to progress of this initiative and the timing of its implementation, if any.


Background

Alongside the 13.8% equity stake in Mt Marion, Neometals has a 70% interest in the ELi® lithium hydroxide processing technology; and a 50% ownership in the lithium battery recycling technology.

The company also has two titanium exposures being the 100% owned Barrambie Titanium Project and the Neomet titanium processing technology.

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Mon, 10 Jul 2017 11:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180562/neometals-ltd-opts-to-hold-onto-lithium-mine-equity-180562.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd and Mineral Resources Ltd update on offtake pricing ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180345/neometals-ltd-and-mineral-resources-ltd-update-on-offtake-pricing-180345.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) and Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) has provided an update from the Mt Marion Lithium Operations.

Pursuant to the terms of the Offtake Agreement with their partner, Ganfeng Lithium, effective from 1 July 2017 the price payable per dry metric tonne of 6% spodumene concentrate produced at Mt Marion and delivered CFR China (Incoterms 2010) increased to US$841 from US$750.

Currently, Neometals has a sale process underway for its 13.8% equity in Mt Marion.

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Wed, 05 Jul 2017 13:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180345/neometals-ltd-and-mineral-resources-ltd-update-on-offtake-pricing-180345.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals lodges lithium battery recycling patents in U.S. ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179574/neometals-lodges-lithium-battery-recycling-patents-in-us-179574.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has lodged three U.S. provisional patent applications associated with its technology to recover high‐value materials from spent lithium batteries.

The scoping studies completed to date confirm that the technology can economically recover high‐value cobalt (99.2% recovery), at potentially lowest quartile operating cost.

Neometals is constructing a 100 kilograms per day pilot plant in Canada to accelerate the commercialisation of the battery recycling technology. 

The pilot program is expected to be completed in the September quarter and test recoveries of cobalt, lithium, nickel and copper from nickel-manganese-cobalt cathode lithium batteries typically used in electric vehicles.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “The lodgement of these patent applications is consistent with Neometals’ intellectual property strategy to protect its competitive advantage once the commercial viability emerges.   

“We will continue our disciplined evaluation of the technology through piloting before undertaking an engineering cost study to satisfy the industry demand for a commercial, environmentally and ethically responsible, end‐of‐life solution for lithium batteries.”


Recovery plant scoping study

Neometals has co-developed a technology with its 50:50 Canadian joint venture partner to economically recover high-value cobalt and other metals.

Agreements have been executed to construct the pilot-scale hydrometallurgical plant at Neometals’ Montreal laboratory.

Details from the previously completed scoping study includes:

- Total capital cost: US$4.5 million;
- Life of plant: 10 years;
- Life of plant revenue: US$233 million;
- Average net operation cost: US$4.45 per pound cobalt or US$9,852 per tonne;
- Pre-tax cash flow: US$144 million;
- Pre-tax net present value: US$84 million; and
- Payback period: <1 year.

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Wed, 21 Jun 2017 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179574/neometals-lodges-lithium-battery-recycling-patents-in-us-179574.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals updates on Mt Marion as share buy-back continues ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179493/neometals-updates-on-mt-marion-as-share-buy-back-continues-179493.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has provided an update on Mt Marion, with the company saying it is aware that Ganfeng Lithium Co., Ltd issued an announcement of the excellent performance of Mt Marion concentrates in their production of battery quality lithium carbonate and hydroxide, and the volumes of product shipped to date and guidance for the month of June.

Neometals confirms the Mt Marion operations have shipped a total of 79,000 tonnes of concentrates from February to the end of May, including 30,055 tonnes in May (majority 6% Li2O).

A shipment of 35,000 tonnes of similar quality is expected to depart on or about 27 June with another 15,000 tonnes expected the first week of July.

Neometals currently has a sale process underway for its remaining 13.8% equity in Mt Marion.


Share buy-back

Neometals has now purchased 16.5 million shares on-market for a consideration of $4.5 million.

Under the program another 11.6 million shares can still be bought.

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Tue, 20 Jun 2017 10:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179493/neometals-updates-on-mt-marion-as-share-buy-back-continues-179493.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals reveals proof of concept for lithium extraction ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178670/neometals-reveals-proof-of-concept-for-lithium-extraction-178670.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has received more positive test results, this time in relation to its lithium and potassium extraction from brine processing technology.

Test work on its titanium‐based adsorbent shows the potential to deliver a more cost effective and environmentally friendly method of extracting lithium and potassium from sodium rich brines as compared to traditional solar evaporation.

Results show Neometals’ adsorbent technology is able to successfully recover lithium and potassium from salar brines while rejecting all of the sodium in solution.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “Proving this scalability of this technology will have significant implications for brine‐based producers and developers, who hold 75% of the world’s lithium resources. 

“Increasing the speed and yield of lithium extraction from brines and reducing operating and capital costs are the keys to unlocking supply needed to meet the lithium demands of the next decade.”


Neometals extraction technology

The conventional solar evaporation phase requires significant capital expenditure to construct a series of large evaporation ponds, significant maintenance of the operating ponds to harvest and store salt and has a circa12 month processing period.

Water in the brine that has been extracted from aquifers and salars is lost to the atmosphere through evaporation.

In comparison, Neometals’ proof-of-concept test results indicate that lithium and potassium adsorption, and rejection of sodium, could be conducted using conventional process equipment with residence times of less than 30 minutes.

Returning nearly all of the brine volume to the salar allows exploitation of salar aquifers with anticipated minimal impact on the water table.

Neometals is also evaluating other technologies that can be coupled with the adsorption technology to improve the conceptual flow-sheet.


Next steps

Neometals y has filed a provisional patent and Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application.

Its strategy is to develop related technologies and commercialise the technologies with suitable partners.

The commercial strategy is licence the technology for royalties and to retain the right to deploy it as principal.   

Neometals will keep the market updated on all material developments with commercialisation partners.

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Fri, 02 Jun 2017 10:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178670/neometals-reveals-proof-of-concept-for-lithium-extraction-178670.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals has vision for new type of battery anode ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178610/neometals-has-vision-for-new-type-of-battery-anode-178610.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has received results from lithium battery cycle testing that demonstrates superior performances characteristics of its lithium titanate anode material.

The company engaged a leading U.S. test facility to commence 100‐cycle cycle testing of coin cell batteries using lithium titanate anode material made by the company at the CSIRO.

Lithium titanate is a leading anode material, which can replace graphite.

Its primary advantage over graphite is the surface area of the anode of lithium titanate being around 100 square metres per gram in contrast to typically 3 square metres for graphite. 

The enlarged surface area enables electrons to enter and leave the anode much more rapidly, leading to ultrafast recharging, enhanced battery life and enhanced safety performance.

The conceptual plan is to develop a process producing a superior lithium titanate anode material from feedstocks generated from the Neometals’ captive resources.

Subject to technical opinion Neometals will seek protection of intellectual property and commence discussions with potential commercialisation partners.

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Thu, 01 Jun 2017 14:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178610/neometals-has-vision-for-new-type-of-battery-anode-178610.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals has now bought back $4 million in stock ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178519/neometals-has-now-bought-back-4-million-in-stock-178519.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) continues its on-market buy-back of stock, and has now spent $3.94 million acquiring just under 14 million shares.

This marks the half-way point under the program, which allows for a maximum of 28.15 million to be purchased.

Neometals has positioned itself to have conservative exposure to the energy storage revolution.

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Wed, 31 May 2017 11:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178519/neometals-has-now-bought-back-4-million-in-stock-178519.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals on-market buyback has snapped up nearly 12 million shares ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178086/neometals-on-market-buyback-has-snapped-up-nearly-12-million-shares-178086.html
Neometals (ASX:NMT) continues its on-market buyback of shares at pace, and has now purchased circa 11.9 million shares for a consideration of $3.4 million.

The program allows for a total purchase of 28.1 million shares, and therefore 16.3 million can still be bought.

Neometals has positioned itself to have conservative exposure to the energy storage revolution.

The company’s core focus commodities are lithium and titanium.

Neometals has three lithium exposures – 1) a 13.8% interest in the Mount Marion Lithium Project which is currently in a sale process; 2) a 70% interest in the ELi® lithium hydroxide processing technology; and 3) a 50% ownership in the lithium battery recycling technology.

The company has two titanium interests being the wholly-owned Barrambie Titanium Project and the Neomet titanium processing technology.

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Mon, 22 May 2017 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178086/neometals-on-market-buyback-has-snapped-up-nearly-12-million-shares-178086.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals keeping leveraged to energy storage revolution ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177758/neometals-keeping-leveraged-to-energy-storage-revolution-177758.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) plans to keep itself exposed to energy storage given global lithium-ion battery capacity is expected to increase by 6x from 2016 to 2020.

The company’s core focus commodities are lithium and titanium.

Neometals has three lithium exposures – 1) a 13.8% interest in the Mount Marion Lithium Project which is currently in a sale process; 2) a 70% interest in the ELi® lithium hydroxide processing technology; and 3) a 50% ownership in the lithium battery recycling technology.

The company has two titanium exposures being the 100% owned Barrambie Titanium Project and the Neomet titanium processing technology.

The focus for FY17 includes:

- Sale process for 13.8% stake at Mount Marion;
- Advancing ELi® lithium hydroxide processing plant project;
- Fast-tracking evaluation of recycling process to recover lithium/cobalt/nickel from lithium-ion batteries; and
- Building royalty portfolio from commercialisation of Neomet process with Sedgman and Andritz.

Most recently, Neometals resolved build a pilot plant in Canada to accelerate the commercialisation of its technology to recycle lithium ion batteries.

The scoping study estimated operating cost of US$4.45 per pound contained cobalt, leaving a significant margin compared with the current spot prices of circaUS$24.50 per pound.

Agreements have been executed to construct the pilot-scale hydrometallurgical plant in Montreal with the plant expected to be operational in July.

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Mon, 15 May 2017 11:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177758/neometals-keeping-leveraged-to-energy-storage-revolution-177758.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals surpasses $2 million spend in on-market buy-back ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177468/neometals-surpasses-2-million-spend-in-on-market-buy-back-177468.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has now purchased over 8 million of its own shares for close to $2.2 million, as the company continues its on-market buying program.

In total Neometals can purchase 28.1 million shares under the program, allowing for the potential of circa 20 million more to be bought.

Earlier in the week the company revealed a strategy to build a pilot plant in Canada to accelerate the commercialisation of its technology to recycle lithium ion batteries to recover high value materials such as cobalt.

The scoping study estimated operating cost of US$4.45 per pound contained cobalt, leaving a significant margin compared with the current spot prices of circaUS$24.50 per pound.

Agreements have been executed to construct the pilot-scale hydrometallurgical plant in Montreal with the plant expected to be operational in July.

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Tue, 09 May 2017 09:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177468/neometals-surpasses-2-million-spend-in-on-market-buy-back-177468.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals to build cobalt recovery plant in Canada ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177407/neometals-to-build-cobalt-recovery-plant-in-canada-177407.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) will build a pilot plant in Canada to accelerate the commercialisation of its technology to recycle lithium ion batteries to recover high value materials such as cobalt.

The scoping study estimated operating cost of US$4.45 per pound contained cobalt, leaving a significant margin compared with the current spot prices of circaUS$24.50 per pound.

Agreements have been executed to construct the pilot-scale hydrometallurgical plant in Montreal with the plant expected to be operational in July.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “With the Mt Marion Lithium Project successfully in production, Neometals’ will accelerate the commercialisation of this environmentally and ethically responsible, end-of-life solution for lithium battery recycling.

“We will apply our knowledge and technology to recover and re-use lithium battery materials and create a more sustainable, circular sourcing solution for potential partners.”


Scoping study highlights

Neometals has co-developed a technology to economically recover high-value cobalt (99.2% recovery) as a material that can be re-cycled within the battery manufacturing chain.

Agreements have been executed to construct the pilot-scale hydrometallurgical plant at Neometals’ Montreal laboratory.

The plant, which is anticipated to be operational in July, will complete continuous test work at a rate of 100 kilograms per day of batteries, testing the recovery of high-purity cobalt, lithium, nickel and other base metals from lithium batteries typically used in the electric vehicles.

Details from the previously completed scoping study includes:

- Total capital cost: US$4.5 million;
- Life of plant: 10 years;
- Life of plant revenue: US$233 million;
- Average net operation cost: US$4.45 per pound cobalt or US$9,852 per tonne;
- Pre-tax cash flow: US$144 million;
- Pre-tax net present value: US$84 million; and
- Payback period: <1 year.


Commercialisation timeline

Neometals’ commercialisation plan is as follows:

- Pilot plant construction (May-July 2017);
- Commercial plant engineering cost study (July-December 2017);
- Commercial plant design and procurement (January-March 2018); and
- Commercial plant fabrication and construction (March-October 2018).

Phases after the pilot plant construction are subject to board approval and other requirements.


Analysis


The decision to build a pilot plant in Montreal marks an important step for Neometals as it progresses its strategy to diversify into the downstream lithium battery material supply chain.

The results from the previous test work and study gives Neometals leverage to a new commodity in cobalt, which is experiencing favourable supply-demand market dynamics.

The cobalt supply chain is under some stress due to the rapid increase in demand from battery manufacturing and a supply chain that is dominated by co‐production and high sovereign risk resource locations.

Currently less than 5% of used lithium‐ion batteries are recycled as disposal is typically either paid‐for recycling or landfill.

Given the current prices of cobalt and the outlook for future supply being outweighed by demand, Neometals has the opportunity to cash in on this favourable cobalt market.

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Mon, 08 May 2017 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177407/neometals-to-build-cobalt-recovery-plant-in-canada-177407.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals on-market buy-back passes $1 million mark ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176957/neometals-on-market-buy-back-passes-1-million-mark-176957.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) continues to buy-back large blocks of its own shares, and yesterday snapped up another 574,000 for circa $183,000.

The company has previously purchased 2.6 million shares for $820,000.

That brings to total purchased to circa 3.1 million for $1,006,000.

The maximum that can be bought back is 28.15 million.

Earlier in the week Neometals outlined that it is in discussions with interested third parties for the sale of the company's interest in the Mt Marion Lithium Project.

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Thu, 27 Apr 2017 10:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176957/neometals-on-market-buy-back-passes-1-million-mark-176957.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals updates on sale of interest in Mt Marion Lithium Project ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176883/neometals-updates-on-sale-of-interest-in-mt-marion-lithium-project-176883.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has provided an update on the sale of the company's interest in the Mt Marion Lithium Project.

Neometals outlined on 7th April 2017 that it had issued an offer by way of notice of sale to its joint venture partners of all its remaining 13.8% interest in Reed Industrial Minerals Pty Ltd (RIM), the holder of the Mt Marion Lithium Project, for a sale price of US$96,001,080.

Today Neometals has said that neither of its joint ventures in RIM have accepted that offer within the offer period in the terms of the pre‐emptive rights procedures under the Shareholders Agreement in respect of RIM.

As neither joint venturer has exercised their rights, Neometals is now entitled within the next sixty days to dispose of its equity interest in RIM to a third party on terms no less favourable to Neometals than those offered to its joint venture partners.

Neometals is now in discussions with interested third parties and will advise the market of any material developments.

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Wed, 26 Apr 2017 11:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176883/neometals-updates-on-sale-of-interest-in-mt-marion-lithium-project-176883.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals snaps up another 500,000 shares on-market ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176564/neometals-snaps-up-another-500000-shares-on-market-176564.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) continues to buy-back its own shares on-market, and yesterday snapped up another 500,000 for a consideration of $163,250, or $0.325 to $0.33 per share.

Under the program, Neometals can buy back up to 28.1 million shares, and has so far purchased circa 1.9 million on these.

Recently the company outlined that it is proposing to sell its 13.8% stake in the operating Mt Marion Lithium Project.

The company gave notice to its partners, which gives them 30 days to decide whether to exercise their pre‐emptive right to buy Neometals’ shares at the nominated price of $US96 million.

If there is no exercise of those rights, then Neometals is able to offer the shares to third parties.

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Wed, 19 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176564/neometals-snaps-up-another-500000-shares-on-market-176564.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals buys back shares on-market ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176403/neometals-buys-back-shares-on-market-176403.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) is undertaking a share buy-back program, and commenced yesterday with the purchase of 1,263,671 shares for just over $400,000, or $0.32 per share.

Under the program Neometals can purchase 28.1 million shares.

Last week the company outlined that it is proposing to sell its 13.8% stake in the operating Mt Marion Lithium Project.

The company gave notice to its joint venturers, which gives them 30 days to decide whether to exercise their pre‐emptive right to buy Neometals’ shares at the nominated price of $US96 million.

If there is no exercise of those rights, then Neometals is able to offer the shares to third parties.

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Thu, 13 Apr 2017 08:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176403/neometals-buys-back-shares-on-market-176403.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals makes move to cash in Mt Marion lithium ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176114/neometals-makes-move-to-cash-in-mt-marion-lithium-176114.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) is proposing to sell its 13.8% stake in the operating Mt Marion Lithium Project located in Western Australia for US$96 million.

The company gave notice to its joint venturers, which gives them 30 days to decide whether to exercise their pre‐emptive right to buy Neometals’ shares at the nominated price of $US96 million.

If there is no exercise of those rights, then Neometals is able to offer the shares to third parties.

Neometals gave notice on 23 March 2017 and understands that one of the joint ventures is in the process of convening a meeting to seek shareholder approval to exercise the right. 

The divesture provides Neometals with the ability to re‐direct its capital and energies to higher margin downstream opportunities, as well as its titanium assets.


Background

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay off-take agreement for Mt Marion.


Reflecting on the value at Mt Marion

To date, before this currently proposed final sell‐down of Mt Marion equity, Neometals has realised US$66.55 million (~A$88 million) in cash.

When combined with a successful divestment, this will result in total sale proceeds of US$162.55 million (~A$213 million) on an investment with a historical cost of circa A$3 million.

Neometals has already distributed A$22.5 million of that return to shareholders by way of dividends in 2016.


Post-sale picture

Assuming acceptance and timely completion by the remaining Mt Marion partners of their pre‐emptive opportunity to acquire Neometals’ residual 13.8% equity interest, Neometals’ projected unrestricted cash balance will be ~A$184 million.

Neometals also has listed investments of circa A$10 million. 

Accordingly, the company has commenced a review of its strategic funding requirements and capital management initiatives, including its recently renewed on‐market buyback program and other potential shareholder return initiatives. 

Neometals will have the opportunity to focus on its:

- ELi Process: lithium processing technology for lithium hydroxide conversion;
- Lithium battery recycling: Recovers cobalt from old lithium batteries;
- Barrambie Titanium Project: Second highest grade titanium deposit globally; and
- Neomet Process: acid recovery processing technology.

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Fri, 07 Apr 2017 09:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176114/neometals-makes-move-to-cash-in-mt-marion-lithium-176114.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals sends second lithium shipment ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/174868/neometals-sends-second-lithium-shipment-174868.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) and its partners have confirmed the departure of a second lithium concentrate shipment from the Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

The 16,662 tonne shipment containing concentrate at +6% and +4% lithium oxide departed from the Port of Kwinana on 14 March, 2017 enroute to Ganfeng’s receiving facility at Zhenjiang Port, China.

This shipment follows the maiden shipment of 15,000 tonnes which departed on 6 February, 2017.

The next shipment of 18,000 tonnes of concentrate is expected to be loaded early April.

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay off-take agreement for Mt Marion.

Neometals’ strategy is to grow market cap by maximising return from existing operations, increasing margins via higher value downstream products and developing growth options.

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Thu, 16 Mar 2017 08:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/174868/neometals-sends-second-lithium-shipment-174868.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals eyes cash war-chest as way to tighten register ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173577/neometals-eyes-cash-war-chest-as-way-to-tighten-register-173577.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has outlined a proposal to initiate an on‐market buy-back of ordinary shares.

Neometals could purchase up to a maximum of 5% of the company’s shares, and will not buy-back more than A$5 million worth of shares over 12 months.

No shares were acquired under the 2016 buy-back.

If the company proceeds, then this will tighten the share register and provide a potential catalyst for a higher share price.

The reason for this is that if the company's maintains its market valuation, but has fewer shares, then each share needs to be worth more.

The company is focused on lithium, but recently added cobalt exposure to its portfolio.

 

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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 13:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173577/neometals-eyes-cash-war-chest-as-way-to-tighten-register-173577.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals completes valuable cobalt extraction test work in Canada ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173427/neometals-completes-valuable-cobalt-extraction-test-work-in-canada-173427.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has completed a proof of scale study aimed at recycling batteries from consumer electronic devices such as laptops and mobile phones.

The test work was completed at facilities in Montreal, Canada, where the co‐developed, proprietary process aimed to recover cobalt from recycled lithium ion batteries.

The completed preliminary engineering cost study supports business case to accelerate commercialisation of the technology.

The estimated cash cost for processing is US$4.45 per pound of cobalt, which has a current spot price of US$20 per pound.

Neometals owns a 13.8% stake in the recently producing Mt Marion Lithium Project, which recently scheduled a second lithium concentrate shipment for mid‐March.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “With the Mt Marion Lithium Project successfully in production, Neometals’ can extend its strategic focus to opportunities in the higher margin, downstream opportunities in the lithium value chain where we can apply our knowledge and technology portfolio.”


Test work details

Neometals completed laboratory scale test work on 100 kilograms of spent lithium‐ion laptop and phone batteries containing an average of 19.8% cobalt.

The company engaged Sedgman to complete an engineering cost study on a small scale plant using the technology.

Results from the completed test work have indicated strong potential for a viable processing operation via a modular plant to initially recover saleable cobalt product from used lithium‐ion batteries.

Details include:

- Total capital cost: US$4.5 million;
- Life of plant: 10 years;
- Life of plant revenue: US$233 million;
- Average net operation cost: US$4.45 per pound cobalt or US$9,852 per tonne;
- Pre-tax cash flow: US$144 million;
- Pre-tax net present value: US$84 million; and
- Payback period: <1 year.


Analysis

The successful results from the test work and study gives Neometals leverage to a new commodity in cobalt, which is experiencing favourable supply-demand market dynamics.

The cobalt supply chain is under some stress due to the rapid increase in demand from battery manufacturing and a supply chain that is dominated by co‐production and high sovereign risk resource locations.

Currently less than 5% of used lithium‐ion batteries are recycled as disposal is typically either paid‐for recycling or landfill.

Immediate plans involve investing in a continuous operation, pilot‐scale hydrometallurgical plant at the company’s Montreal laboratory to accelerate the evaluation of the recovery of high‐purity cobalt and future recovery of lithium, nickel, copper and aluminium.

Subject to the success of the mini‐pilot/pilot scale test work, Neometals intends to proceed with a feasibility study.

The proposed work plan will be funded internally, with an expected date of completion in December 2017.

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Tue, 21 Feb 2017 11:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173427/neometals-completes-valuable-cobalt-extraction-test-work-in-canada-173427.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals prepares second lithium shipment, ramp-up on track ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173292/neometals-prepares-second-lithium-shipment-ramp-up-on-track-173292.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) and its partners have scheduled a second lithium concentrate shipment for mid‐March from the Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

The shipment has an anticipated tonnage of circa 15,000 tonnes with product grades of +6 and +4% lithium oxide.

This follows the inaugural shipment earlier this month.

Furthermore, The mine’s shareholders, Ganfeng Lithium, Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) and Neometals have finalised negotiations regarding off-take arrangements and mining services.

Execution of formal documentation is expected by the end February 2017,


Operations update

The plant has successfully reached throughput at rates of 280 tonnes per hour and recoveries and product grades are in line with the ramp‐up plan. 

The construction of the fines flotation circuit is expected to be completed by the end of February 2017 with commissioning scheduled to commence immediately.   

Formal documentation

Execution of formal documentation is expected by the end of February regarding:

Off-take Arrangements

- Fix the 6% lithium oxide pricing (US$750 per dry metric tonne, CFR China) for shipments departing before 30 June 2017;
- Pricing of subsequent shipments is to be set on a 6‐month basis by a formula based on a weighted average price of Chinese imports of lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide (based on published import statistics) plus a floor price consistent with original off-take agreement; and
- Expand the scope of the off-take agreements for the Mt Marion Project to 400,000 tonnes per annum of spodumene concentrates to include any sub‐6% lithium oxide production.

Mining Services Arrangements

- To vary the existing Mining Services Agreement to cover production of coarse and fine sub‐6% lithium oxide products in line with above off-take arrangements;
- Subject to agreement on final commercial pricing, to further vary the Mining Services Agreement to upgrade sub‐6% lithium oxide products to all +6% lithium oxide product, resulting in 400,000 tonnes per annum of +6% lithium oxide concentrates. Mineral Resources have ordered long lead items.    It is expected that construction will commence in March 2017 without negative impact on production and with transition to all 6% lithium oxide production by the end of CY2017.


Background

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay off-take agreement for Mt Marion.

Neometals’ strategy is to grow market cap by maximising return from existing operations, increasing margins via higher value downstream products and developing growth options.

The share price has increased 75% over the past 12 months, currently trading at $0.34.

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Fri, 17 Feb 2017 10:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173292/neometals-prepares-second-lithium-shipment-ramp-up-on-track-173292.html
<![CDATA[News - Mineral Resources, Neometals and Ganfeng advise of inaugural shipment of lithium ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/172748/mineral-resources-neometals-and-ganfeng-advise-of-inaugural-shipment-of-lithium-172748.html Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN), Neometals (ASX:NMT) and Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd have advised of the inaugural shipment of lithium concentrates produced at the Mt Marion Lithium Project in Western Australia.

The first shipment of 15,000 tonnes of lithium concentrates have been loaded onto the MV Pacific Venus at the Port of Kwinana and last night departed on its journey to the Zhenjiang Port, China, where it will deliver the product to Ganfeng.

This first shipment follows the successful commissioning and continued ramp up of production from Mt Marion, which is forecast to produce 400,000 tonnes per annum at full capacity.

Chris Reed, managing director for Neometals, commented:

"The successful first shipment from Mt Marion is a significant milestone for Neometals and our project partners, and we are proud to have been part of progressing the project from final investment decision to first shipment within 18 months."

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Tue, 07 Feb 2017 15:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/172748/mineral-resources-neometals-and-ganfeng-advise-of-inaugural-shipment-of-lithium-172748.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals plans first lithium shipment in January ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170834/neometals-plans-first-lithium-shipment-in-january-170834.html Neometals (ASX:NMT)  is expecting the first shipment of circa 10,000 tonnes of lithium concentrate from its 13.8% owned Mt Marion lithium operation to depart in January 2017.

As at 21 December 2016, circa 6,000 tonnes of lithium concentrate had been produced from Mt Marion, with 3,000 tonnes stockpiled at port, and with trucking continuing around the clock.

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals Ltd.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay offtake agreement for Mt Marion.

Neometals’ current strategy is to grow market cap by maximising return from existing operations, increasing margins via higher value downstream products and developing growth options.

The share price has doubled year to date, currently trading at $0.34.

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Thu, 22 Dec 2016 10:20:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170834/neometals-plans-first-lithium-shipment-in-january-170834.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd rewarded with lithium resource upgrade ahead of first shipment ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/168174/neometals-ltd-rewarded-with-lithium-resource-upgrade-ahead-of-first-shipment-168174.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has been rewarded from its recent drill programs with a 29% increase in the resource estimate at the Mt Marion Lithium Project located 40 kilometres from Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

The Mineral Resource estimate has increased 29.5% to 77.8 million tonnes at 1.37% lithium oxide and 1.09% iron.

Modelling has shown potential open-pit mining to a depth of 400 metres, which is the depth limit to the resource.

The first shipment from Mt Marion is planned for November 2016.

Neometals owns 13.8% of the globally significant Mt Marion lithium deposit currently being developed.


Background

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals Ltd.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay offtake agreement for Mt Marion.

 

Upcoming project milestones

Neometals is positioned as a near term producer coming online in a strong lithium market with the following project milestones upcoming:

- First shipment (November 2016);
- Maiden Reserve (November 2016); and
- Commission fines circuit (Q1 CY17).

Recent Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

Earlier this month, Neometals signed an MOU to further progress the development of a downstream lithium chemical plant in Western Australia.

Under the plan the partners would use lithium concentrate from their jointly‐owned Mt Marion project to produce a battery‐quality, lithium hydroxide product.

Neometals and a subsidiary of Mineral Resources have agreed to jointly assess the feasibility of the construction and operation of a lithium plant.

Initial work streams under the MOU have commenced, with a final investment decision expected by Q3 2017.


Analysis

The resource upgrade represents another completed milestone on the lithium project’s path to production.

The results of the 105 hole infill and extensional drill program increase the projects economics of Mt Marion.

The current market for battery grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate is in tight supply due to high demand growth.

Imports to China of spodumene 6% lithium oxide have risen in price to over A$700 per tonne from near A$400 per tonne in 2014.

The market demand is forecast to grow significantly for the next 5 years through to 2020.

This is fortuitous timing as this is the timeframe in which Neometals and Mineral Resources are aiming to commence production at the project.

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Fri, 28 Oct 2016 10:15:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/168174/neometals-ltd-rewarded-with-lithium-resource-upgrade-ahead-of-first-shipment-168174.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd achieves milestone for development of lithium chemical plant ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166797/neometals-ltd-achieves-milestone-for-development-of-lithium-chemical-plant-71309.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has signed a memorandum of understanding to further progress the development of a downstream lithium chemical plant in Western Australia.

Under the plan the partners would use lithium concentrate from their jointly‐owned Mt Marion Project to produce a battery‐quality, lithium hydroxide product.

Neometals owns 13.8% of the globally significant Mt Marion lithium deposit currently being developed.

The company also owns 70% of the ELi Process which converts spodumene concentrate into high value battery grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “With the transition of Mt Marion to production we are now confident that a downstream lithium processing plant located nearby to Mt Marion will deliver superior economic outcomes for the joint venture partners with the added benefit of bring new employment opportunities to the Goldfields.”


Background

The Mt Marion Lithium Project is owned by:

- 43.1% Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN);
- 43.1% Ganfeng Lithium; and
- 13.8% Neometals Ltd.

Minerals Resources is the project operator and Australia’s largest contract minerals processor.

Ganfeng is China’s leading, most profitable lithium producer and has secured a life-of-mine, take-or-pay offtake agreement for Mt Marion.


Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

Under the MOU, Neometals and a subsidiary of Mineral Resources have agreed to jointly assess the feasibility of the construction and operation of a lithium plant.

Key activities under the MOU will include:
 
– Front end engineering and design (FEED);
– Site selection and acquisition;
– Negotiation of reagent supplies (gas, sulphuric acid, caustic soda); and
– Assessment of environmental and regulatory approvals.

Initial work streams under the MOU will commence immediately, with a final investment decision expected by Q3 2017.

The commercialisation program of the patented ELi process will continue separately from arrangements under this MOU.


Analysis

The signing of an MOU is an important step for improving downstream economics for the Mt Marion lithium project.

A lithium plant that sources input from Mt Marion also will give Neometals a greater exposure to the battery-grade lithium market.

The proposed plant located near the Mt Marion operation is expected to provide significant operational and logistical cost benefits.

The process route can potentially eliminate the need for pilot testing as Ganfeng will be processing run‐of‐mine concentrates at commercial scale from the December quarter, 2016.

The current market for battery grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate is in tight supply due to high demand growth and constrained supply.

The market demand is forecast to grow significantly for the next 5 years through to 2020.

This is fortuitous timing as this is the timeframe in which Neometals and Mineral Resources are aiming to commence production at the project.

The company's share price is up circa 90% year to date, trading around $0.325.

Neometals is positioned as a near term producer coming online in a strong lithium market.

Project milestones and upcoming news flow includes:

- Commission coarse circuit (imminent);
- First shipment (October 2016);
- Drill results (October 2016);
- Updated Resource (October 2016);
- Maiden Reserve (October 2016); and
- Commission fines circuit (Q1 CY17).

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Mon, 03 Oct 2016 09:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166797/neometals-ltd-achieves-milestone-for-development-of-lithium-chemical-plant-71309.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd receives Buy recommendation, $0.59 price target ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165400/neometals-ltd-receives-buy-recommendation-059-price-target-70489.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has received a Buy recommendation and $0.59/sh price target from Euroz.

Shares in the company last traded at $0.37. The following is an extract from the report.


Exploration Update & Dividend

Investment case

Neometals affirms its focus on shareholder returns, declaring another $0.02/sh dividend, unfranked.

Mt Marion will be shipping Li product in October, enabling NMT to pay future dividends. The spectacular exploration success at Mt Marion implies a sizeable mineral resource upgrade is pending.

We believe partner, MinRes (ASX:MIN), will operate the mine at (or possibly above) capacity, supplying 50ktpa LCE or 30% to the global Li market.

Ultimately the Mt Marion orebody has yet greater capacity to produce and this will probably be exploited in 2017.

The Mt Marion partners will secure a very large market share ahead of competing Li development companies.

Neometals has a solid balance sheet, dividend track record, impending cashflow and only small capital expenditure planned.

Capital growth will come via its LiOH project and associated offtake rights to Mt Marion product.

NMT is not without strategic/corporate appeal.


Key points

Dividend

Neometals has declared a $0.02/sh unfranked dividend, payable to holders 17 August 2016.

This brings the total paid in 2016 to $0.04/sh.

NMT’s cash balance will decline by $11m, to $63m. NMT carries NIL debt. We estimate NMT will earn $17m pa (EBITDA) from its stake in Mt Marion (NMT 13.8%, MIN 43.1%, Ganfeng 43.1%).

We expect NMT will be able to sustain dividends at a rate of $0.02/sh pa once Mt Marion is operational.

Exploration Update

Mt Marion Phase 2 RC Drilling is complete with an additional 147 holes for 21,179m drilled in approximately 3 months.

A significant resource upgrade is undoubtedly pending, probably during September. Existing mineral resources estimate is 60.5mt grading 1.36% Li2O JORC Ind&Inf).

Spectacular results are reported from Area 2 West. Multiple intersections of 100m to 300m thickness, average grades 10-20% higher than the existing resource, and with excellent continuity have been reported.

Deep core drilling is ongoing. The pod is thought to be a “feeder” structure and
is open at depth to the north.

We estimate this pod contains an addition 15mt to 20mt grading 1.5% Li2O.

Positive results have also been reported from drilling on the other deposits: Areas 1, 2, 4, & 6.

We would not be surprised to see the overall Mt Marion mineral resource estimate be upgraded to ~90mt grading 1.4%-1.5% Li2O.

Construction of the Mt Marion process plant is nearing completion, with 1st shipment due in October 2016. We expect Mt Marion to be full ramped-up by March 2016, producing 400ktpa concentrate, or 50kt LCE, representing 30% of the current global Li market.

Mt Marion is designed to process 2.3mtpa of ore. There is scope to increase the mining rate further should market demand call for it, based on our estimate of future mineral resource upgrades.

An increase in processing capacity may yet be contemplated, once the current plant capacity is actually proven.

A mining/process rate of say 4.5mtpa would equate to a 20yr resource life and production output of 800ktpa concentrate (=100ktpa LCE).

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Wed, 17 Aug 2016 09:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165400/neometals-ltd-receives-buy-recommendation-059-price-target-70489.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd declares $0.02 unfranked dividend ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165399/neometals-ltd-declares-002-unfranked-dividend-70401.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has declared an unfranked dividend of $0.02 per share, to holders of ordinary shares registered at 5.00pm WST on 17 August 2016.

The declaration of the dividend is consistent with the company’s commitment to share cash considered surplus to prudential requirements with shareholders via a disciplined capital management program.


Lithium production

With lithium concentrate production and cashflows commencing from the Mt Marion Project in the December quarter 2016, Neometals said that the management focus has now shifted to advancing its plan for co-development of a downstream lithium processing operation and commercialisation of the company’s non-lithium asset portfolio.


Mt Marion Resource

Neometals is partnering with Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) and Ganfeng Lithium Co., Ltd (SZSE:002460) at the Mt Marion Lithium Project.

Earlier in the month, a reverse circulation drilling program was completed for a further 147 drill holes totalling 21,179 metres.

Results to date have been positive with significant increases in the previously defined shallow, west dipping, spodumene‐bearing pegmatites at Area’s 1, 2, 2 West, 4, and 6.

Diamond drilling is ongoing, and when completed, Snowden have been engaged to update the resource.


Analysis

Neometals financial position is very strong with circa A$74 million in unrestricted cash and net assets of A$89.6 million as at 30 June 2016.

The total amount of the dividend paid to shareholders will be around A$11.3 million.

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Fri, 12 Aug 2016 09:10:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165399/neometals-ltd-declares-002-unfranked-dividend-70401.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd shows lithium hydroxide potential from patented ELiTM Process ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159737/neometals-ltd-shows-lithium-hydroxide-potential-from-patented-elitm-process-69741.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) with its joint venture partner Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) have progressed the commercialisation of their ELi Process after positive feasibility study results.

The study has confirmed the proposed production project to be technically and economically feasible.

Neometals owns 70% of the ELi Process which converts spodumene concentrate into high value battery grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate.

The study demonstrates an internal rate of return (IRR) of 51% and a pre-tax net present value (NPV) of US$48 million.

The next step in the project’s development plan is to complete an integrated pilot plant test program.

Chris Reed, managing director, commented: “We are pleased to have completed another step towards commercialising our patented ELi process and building a globally competitive, high purity battery grade lithium compound facility.”

 
Feasibility study details

The study sees potential for low cost battery grade lithium products to be produced from spodumene concentrate sourced from the 27% owned Mt Marion lithium project.

The study has been completed using a location in Peninsular Malaysia as the base for operations.

Feasibility study highlights include:

Average annual production - 14,000t lithium hydroxide, 5,600 tonnes lithium carbonate
Life of plant (LOP) - 20 years
LOP revenue - US$4,042 million
Pre‐tax net cash flow - US$82.39 million
Pre‐tax NPV (12% discount rate) - US$481.7 million
Pre‐tax IRR - 51%
Cash operating cost per tonne of lithium hydroxide - US$4,630
Cash operating cost per tonne of lithium carbonate - US$5,345
Pre‐production capital cost (including EPCM and contingency) - US$158 million
Payback of capital costs - 2.6 years

The next step in the project’s development plan is to complete an integrated pilot plant test program using run-of-mine concentrates from Mt Marion before committing to the detailed design and construction of a full scale plant.

In parallel, a formal partner selection process will commence to commercialise this globally significant project.


Mt Marion Lithium Project

Mt Marion is a globally significant lithium deposit, containing total Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources of 60.5 million tonnes at 1.36% Li2O and 1.09% Fe2O3.

The project operator, Mineral Resources, is continuing the construction phase of the project.

All site preparation work, installation of site offices and amenities, detailed engineering design work and construction of concrete civil works for the dry plant have been completed.

Overburden stripping is well progressed and the haul road to pit 1 is close to completion and on schedule according to mine start up plan.


Analysis

The feasibility study confirmed the potential for a viable, profitable new business using the patented ELi Process.

Results indicate that the project has the potential to support a robust business in a high growth market sector.
 
The ELi Process has the potential to provide a key competitive advantage with lower capital and unit
operating costs when compared to current industry averages using conventional technology.

The current market for battery grade lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate is in tight supply due to high demand growth and constrained supply.

The market demand is forecast to grow significantly for the next 5 years through to 2020.

This is fortuitous timing as this is the timeframe in which Neometals and Mineral Resources are aiming to commence production at the project.

The company's share price is up circa 150% year to date, trading around $0.43.

Neometals is positioned as a near term producer coming online in a strong lithium market.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Mon, 11 Jul 2016 14:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159737/neometals-ltd-shows-lithium-hydroxide-potential-from-patented-elitm-process-69741.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd and JV partners lift Mt Marion lithium resource by 160% ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159736/neometals-ltd-and-jv-partners-lift-mt-marion-lithium-resource-by-160--69653.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) and its joint venture partners have increased the total contained lithium resources at the Mt Marion Lithium Project by 160% to 60 million tonnes at 1.36% Li2O and 1.09% iron.

The operator of the project Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) has a 30% stake, Ganfeng Lithium Co a 43% stake and Neometals a 27% holding in the project. 

Ganfeng is China’s largest lithium producer.

The 0.3% cut-off grade reflects the strategy of mining to the lithium-bearing pegmatite contacts.

A total of 852 drill holes have been drilled as at 17 June 2016, totalling about 67,185 metres in length. The majority of the drilling is RC drilling which comprises some 97% of the drilled metres, with the remainder drilled using diamond core drilling.

Initial drilling at Mt Marion in the early 1970s was by Western Mining Corporation was completed by Reed Resources Ltd (now Neometals), Reed Industrial Minerals Ltd (RIM) and MRL since 2009.


Off take

In June, it was reported that initial offtake partner Ganfeng had agreed to further expand the scope of the offtake arrangements for lithium spodumene concentrate grading 4-6% Li2O from 80,000 tonnes per annum to 200,000 tonnes per annum of spodumene concentrate.

This is in addition to the existing Offtake Agreement for 200,000 tonnes per annum of +6% Li2O.

Neometals is leveraged to both production and resource growth of the Mt Marion asset. Today's increase in resource will assist the cause.



Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 06 Jul 2016 14:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159736/neometals-ltd-and-jv-partners-lift-mt-marion-lithium-resource-by-160--69653.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd and Mineral Resources Ltd achieve financial close ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159735/neometals-ltd-and-mineral-resources-ltd-achieve-financial-close-69171.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) and Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) advise that financial close occurred today regarding the exercise of a call option by MIN to acquire an additional 13.1% of Reed Industrial Minerals Pty Ltd from Neometals.

The companies advise that financial close occurred today with the receipt of US$19.65 million.

Neometals’ cash balance is now A$79.7 million.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Fri, 10 Jun 2016 15:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159735/neometals-ltd-and-mineral-resources-ltd-achieve-financial-close-69171.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd receives Outperform rating from Macquarie Wealth Management ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159734/neometals-ltd-receives-outperform-rating-from-macquarie-wealth-management-69054.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has received an Outperform rating from Macquarie Wealth Management, with a A$0.55 per share target price. The company last traded at $0.47.

The following is an extract from Macquarie's latest Global Lithium Report.


Macquarie noted:

We see NMT’s Mt Marion project as the largest and lowest risk new addition to hard rock lithium supply.

The mine is expected to produce ~200,000tpa of 6% spodumene concentrate and should account for around 50% of the current Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE) shortfall.

NMT is a minority partner (26.9%) in the Mt Marion Joint Venture.

The project is being constructed by Mineral Resources under a BOO contract and life-of-mine off-take has been secured with China’s second largest lithium producer, Ganfeng Lithium which is also the majority equity partner and off-taker.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Mon, 06 Jun 2016 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159734/neometals-ltd-receives-outperform-rating-from-macquarie-wealth-management-69054.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd expands lithium offtake arrangement ahead of production ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159733/neometals-ltd-expands-lithium-offtake-arrangement-ahead-of-production-68976.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) has increased its offtake arrangements at the Mt Marion Lithium Project near Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

Neometals is a near-term lithium oxide mineral producer through its 26.9% interest in the Mt Marion project.

Initial offtake partner Ganfeng has agreed to further expand the scope of the offtake arrangements for lithium spodumene concentrate grading 4-6% Li2O from 80,000 tonnes per annum to 200,000 tonnes per annum of spodumene concentrate.

This is in addition to the existing Offtake Agreement for 200,000 tonnes per annum of +6% Li2O.

The expanded offtake arrangement is conditional to the completion of a detailed metallurgical test program, which is currently in process.

The project is on schedule to achieve first production during 2016.


Offtake arrangements

The initial offtake arrangement saw Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd (China’s largest lithium producer) agree to take-or-pay all of the 6% lithium spodumene concentrate produced from the Mt Marion Project, 200,000 tonnes per annum initially.

Following successful metallurgical test work, Ganfeng agreed to expand the scope of the offtake arrangement to take-or-pay an additional 80,000 tonnes per annum of 4-6% Li20 lithium spodumene concentrate.

The most recent increase to 200,000 tonnes per annum of 4-6% Li20 lithium spodumene concentrate is at agreed discounts to the market prices for the 6% concentrate.
 
The expanded offtake arrangements remain conditional on agreement from project owners and finalising the necessary variations to the Mining Services Agreement to cover the production of the lower grade product.

The variation will be concluded on completion of a detailed metallurgical test program currently being undertaken.


Mt Marion Lithium Project

Mt Marion is a globally significant lithium deposit, containing total Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources of 23.24 million tonnes at 1.39% lithium and 1.43% iron oxide.

Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN), operator has a 30% stake, Ganfeng a 43% stake and Neometals a 27% holding in the project.

During the March quarter, the project operator, Mineral Resources continued the construction phase of the project.

Overburden stripping is well progressed and the haul road to pit 1 is close to completion and on schedule according to mine start up plan.

The crushing plant has begun commissioning on run of mine (ROM) material.


Analysis

The conditional expansion to the offtake arrangement to 200,000 tonnes per annum represents a 150% increase on the previous comparable arrangement of 80,000 tonnes per annum.

Considering the offtaker, Ganfeng, is an equity partner in the Mr Marion operation, they are motivated to see it be successful.

The company's share price is up circa 180% year to date, trading around $0.49.

Neometals is positioned as a near term producer coming online in a strong lithium market.

Neometals is leveraged to both production and resource growth of the Mt Marion asset.

Recent drill results confirm the potential for resource growth with Neometals recently intersecting a significant broad zone of pegmatite with intercepts including 186 metres at 1.82% Li20.

Neometals ended the March quarter with a healthy $65.3 million cash in the bank and paid out $11.2 million in dividends during April.

As one of few near term ASX lithium oxide mineral producers, Neometals has attracted research coverage from by two Australian brokers.

Catalysts for the stock over the coming months include:

- Mt Marion resource upgrade;
- Updates on the new A$4 million drill program;
- Metallurgical test program and finalisation of offtake agreement;
- Buying back of the company's shares as part of the ongoing A$5 million program;
- Completion of the definitive feasibility study at the Lithium Hydroxide Project; and
- Completion of legal agreements for use of proprietary technology at the Barrambie Titanium Project.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Thu, 02 Jun 2016 08:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159733/neometals-ltd-expands-lithium-offtake-arrangement-ahead-of-production-68976.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd JV eyes first production at Mt Marion Lithium Project ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159732/neometals-ltd-jv-eyes-first-production-at-mt-marion-lithium-project-68378.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) and joint venture partners continue their strategic resource expansion drill program at the Mt Marion Lithium Project near Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

Mineral Resources Limited (ASX:MIN), operator has a 30% stake, Ganfeng Lithium Co., Ltd a 43% stake and Neometals a 27% holding in the project. 

The project is on schedule to achieve first production during 2016 which is timely as the price of lithium compounds remains high due to constrained supply during sustained strong growth in demand from renewable energy storage and electric/hybrid vehicle sectors.

During the March quarter, 208 reverse circulation holes were drilled for a total of 20,404 metres and 10 diamond holes were drilled for a total of 525 metres.

Drilling aims to extend the open‐pitable mine life through the extension to and in‐fill drilling of existing deposits.

The program also aims to define new resources from outcropping pegmatites prospects on lithium rights acquired from Metals X Ltd (ASX:MLX) in July, 2015.

A new resource estimate is planned for the June quarter, with an ore reserve estimate due in the September quarter.


Mt Marion Lithium Project

Mt Marion is a globally significant lithium deposit, containing total Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources of 23.24 million tonnes at 1.39% Li2O and 1.43% Fe2O3.

During the March quarter, the project operator, Mineral Resources  continued the construction phase of the project.

All site preparation work, installation of site offices and amenities, detailed engineering design work and construction of concrete civil works for the dry plant were completed.

Overburden stripping is well progressed and the haul road to pit 1 is close to completion and on schedule according to mine start up plan.

The first ore delivery to the ROM expected in early May, once the haul road is operational.


Board appointments

The company recently expanded its board with the appointment of two new independent directors effective from 14 April 2016, Doug Ritchie and Natalia Streltsova.

Ritchie is a senior resources industry executive with over 35 years experience, including over 28 years working with Rio Tinto in various senior management roles.

Streltsova is a PhD qualified chemical engineer with over 25 years experience in the minerals industry and an extensive background in mineral processing and hydrometallurgy across a range of commodities relevant to Neometals.


Analysis

Neometals ended the March quarter with a healthy $65.3 million cash in the bank and paid out $11.2 million in dividends during April.

The company's share price is up circa 120% year to date, trading around $0.38.

Neometals continues to remain in the small class of near term ASX lithium oxide mineral producers.

Catalysts for the stock over the coming months include:

- Ongoing drilling and progress updates at Mt Marion;
- Mt Marion resource upgrade;
- Buying back of the company's shares as part of the ongoing A$5 million program;
- Completion of the definitive feasibility study at the Lithium Hydroxide Project; and
- Completion of legal agreements for use of proprietary technology at the Barrambie Titanium Project.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Mon, 02 May 2016 09:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159732/neometals-ltd-jv-eyes-first-production-at-mt-marion-lithium-project-68378.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd's discusses steps to lithium production at Proactive CEO Spotlight Sessions ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159731/neometals-ltds-discusses-steps-to-lithium-production-at-proactive-ceo-spotlight-sessions-68069.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) managing director Chris Reed, and COO Michael Tamlin, joined the Proactive Investors Spotlight CEO Roadshow in Melbourne and Sydney this week, providing investors with the latest update on the company.

Neometals is a near-term lithium oxide mineral producer from the Mt Marion Project in Western Australia.

The company also has a significant cash war-chest that could allow it to run potential corporate transactions under the microscope.

ACCESS THE FULL PRESENTATION HERE

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Fri, 15 Apr 2016 19:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159731/neometals-ltds-discusses-steps-to-lithium-production-at-proactive-ceo-spotlight-sessions-68069.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd expands board to drive strategic objectives ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159730/neometals-ltd-expands-board-to-drive-strategic-objectives-68091.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) is a near-term lithium oxide mineral producer from the Mt Marion Project in Western Australia.

The company has now expanded its board with the appointment of two new independent directors effective from 14 April 2016, Doug Ritchie and Natalia Streltsova.

Ritchie is a senior resources industry executive with over 35 years experience, including over 28 years working with Rio Tinto in various senior management roles.

Streltsova is a PhD qualified chemical engineer with over 25 years experience in the minerals industry and an extensive background in mineral processing and hydrometallurgy across a range of commodities relevant to Neometals.

Steven Cole, chairman, commented:

"With Neometals strategically positioning itself as a globally relevant player in the lithium and titanium industries, Doug’s and Natalia’s wealth of relevant technical and commercial experience will be invaluable.

"As the company’s market capitalisation continues to grow towards ASX 300 entry level, the expanded majority independent board coupled with the organisation’s existing strong commitment to corporate governance best practice, well positions the company to meet institutional shareholder governance expectations.”

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Fri, 15 Apr 2016 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159730/neometals-ltd-expands-board-to-drive-strategic-objectives-68091.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd confirms release of US$13.575M, outlines Investor Roadshow ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159729/neometals-ltd-confirms-release-of-us13575m-outlines-investor-roadshow-67913.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) is a near-term lithium oxide mineral producer from the Mt Marion Project in Western Australia.

Neometals holds 26.9%, with Ganfeng Lithium 43.1% and Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) 30% and Operator. Shares in Neometals last traded at $0.39, or around 9-times higher than 12-months ago.

The company also has a significant cash war-chest.

Today Neometals confirmed that in accordance with the revised completion arrangements agreed with Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd, as announced to the ASX on 18 February 2016, the completion of the sale and release of the remaining US$13.575 million to Neometals occurred on 31 March 2016.


Investor Roadshow

Neometals also outlined it will be presenting to investors in Melbourne and Sydney.

Click on the city for more details:

Melbourne Investor Luncheon, Tuesday, 12th April.

Sydney Investor Luncheon, Wednesday 13th April.

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Wed, 06 Apr 2016 17:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159729/neometals-ltd-confirms-release-of-us13575m-outlines-investor-roadshow-67913.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd's Chris Reed brings lithium to Spotlight CEO Sessions ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159728/neometals-ltds-chris-reed-brings-lithium-to-spotlight-ceo-sessions-67707.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) is a near-term lithium oxide mineral producer from the Mt Marion Project in Western Australia.

Neometals holds 26.9%, with Ganfeng Lithium 43.1% and Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:MIN) 30% and Operator. Shares in Neometals last traded at $0.36, or around 8-times higher than 12-months ago.

The company also has a significant cash war-chest that could allow it to run potential corporate transactions under the microscope.

Apart from the shareholding in the Mt Marion Project, Neometals will have a 70% shareholding in Reed Advanced Materials Pty Ltd, owner of the patented ELi process to produce lithium hydroxide directly from spodumene concentrates.


Meet Chris Reed, managing director, at Proactive's Spotlight CEO Sessions in Melbourne and Sydney in April 2016

Melbourne Investor Sessions, Tuesday, 12th April.

Sydney Investor Sessions FINAL 3 SEATS, Wednesday 13th April. Click here to contact Pauline if you wish to attend.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China. ]]>
Tue, 05 Apr 2016 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159728/neometals-ltds-chris-reed-brings-lithium-to-spotlight-ceo-sessions-67707.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals Ltd to proceed immediately with unfranked dividend payment ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159726/neometals-ltd-to-proceed-immediately-with-unfranked-dividend-payment-67499.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) recently outlined that it will rewards its shareholders with a return of capital.

Neometals has now updated that the proposed cash payment to shareholders of $0.02 per share, or around A$11.2 million in total, will now be paid entirely as an unfranked dividend.

The company said after consultation with tax advisers, the board has determined that the proportion of any return that could be attributed as a return of capital is minimal.

The board has accordingly decided that is preferable to proceed immediately with an unfranked dividend and avoid additional costs and delays that would be associated with seeking shareholder approval for the return of capital.

As a result, the directors have declared a dividend of $0.02 per share, to holders of ordinary shares registered at 4.00pm WST on 22 March 2016.

The payment date is 7 April 2016.

Neometals also intends to initiate an on-market buy‐back of ordinary shares, this will commence after payment of the dividend.

The company will also initiate an unmarketable parcel sale facility, enabling shareholders with a valued at less than A$500, to sell their full holding with no broking or administration fees.

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Mon, 14 Mar 2016 13:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159726/neometals-ltd-to-proceed-immediately-with-unfranked-dividend-payment-67499.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals continues strategy to divest non-core asset to focus on lithium ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159725/neometals-continues-strategy-to-divest-non-core-asset-to-focus-on-lithium-67341.html Neometals (ASX:NMT) has executed a binding termsheet with Hannans Reward (ASX:HNR) under which Neometals will divest its Forrestania nickel assets via the sale of the company’s subsidiary company, Reed Exploration Pty Ltd (REX).

The transaction is consistent with Neometals’ ongoing strategy to divest non-core assets and focus on the development of its lithium and advanced materials business.

Neometals will be a producer of spodumene (lithium oxide mineral) concentrate by mid 2016 at Mt Marion.

As part of the divestment, Neometals has also agreed to a placement of $250,000 worth of HNR shares at 0.4c per share, which is around 8% of HNR’s issued capital.

The placement subscription will be eligible for a 1 for 2 free attaching option exercisable at 0.4c within 2 years.


Under the terms of the transaction for the sale of REX:

1. Hannans will undertake a capital raising of $1.25 million from its shareholders. In addition to its upfront $250,000 subscription, Neometals has agreed to underwrite the last $250,000 of the Hannans’ capital raising;

2. Neometals is contributing a maximum of $1.25 million cash, through the placement, underwriting and the cash assets of REX at completion;

3. Neometals will hold approximately 40% of the issued capital in Hannans at completion, on an undiluted basis;

4. Hannans will divest its Swedish projects via an in specie distribution of the shares in its subsidiary company Scandinavian Resources Pty Ltd (“Scandinavian Resources”) to shareholders of which Neometals will receive at least 13.5%;

5. Neometals will assist Scandinavian Resources to realise lithium, cobalt and carbon opportunities in Scandinavia through a technical assistance arrangement; and

6. the Hannans board will be re-constituted to comprise of two existing Hannans directors and one director nominated by Neometals.

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Fri, 04 Mar 2016 14:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159725/neometals-continues-strategy-to-divest-non-core-asset-to-focus-on-lithium-67341.html
<![CDATA[News - Neometals to return capital to shareholders, share buy-back ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159724/neometals-to-return-capital-to-shareholders-share-buy-back-67170.html Neometals Ltd (ASX:NMT) will reward its shareholders with a return of capital and buying back its own shares on-market to tighten issued capital.

A cash payment of $0.02 per share will be paid to shareholders in equal part capital reduction and payment of an unfranked dividend.

Once a tax ruling from the Australian Taxation Office is received, a meeting of shareholders is expected to be held in April 2016 with a likely late March 2016 time frame for cheques to be mailed to shareholders.

The capital management strategy evolved from the recent cash injection, strong balance sheet and projected future cash flows from participating as a 26.9% shareholder in the Mt Marion Project.

Neometals is expected to hold cash reserves of between A$66 million and A$68 million by March-end to effect the capital management strategy - the envy of many a near term producer.

The company will be a producer of spodumene (lithium oxide mineral) concentrate by mid 2016 at Mt Marion.

Euroz projected Neometals' EBITDA from Mt Marion of $17 million per annum at a 26.9% equity or $9 million per annum at a 13.8% equity stake depending on option exercise.

Ganfeng Lithium Co., Ltd will accelerate the exercise of its option to acquire an additional 18.1% of Reed Industrial Minerals Pty Ltd from Neometals.

Proceeds of US$13.575 million have been received or 50% of the proceeds and the balance to be released on or before 31 March 2016.

Neometals will use about $5 million buy back its own shares to a maximum of 5% of issued capital over 12 months and also unmarketable parcel sale facility for small shareholdings.


Strong portfolio to progress growth

Apart from the shareholding in the Mt Marion Project, Neometals will have a 70% shareholding in Reed Advanced Materials Pty Ltd, owner of the patented ELi process to produce lithium hydroxide directly from spodumene concentrates.

A Definitive Feasibility Study for this is due for completion in June 2016.

Neometals is also looking to commercialise the Canadian process technology which the company holds exclusive rights to and potential partnership with a global EPC engineering company.

It may also crystallise value from the Barrambie Titanium project and cash from divestment of its nickel tenements.


Analysis

This is a fine time to be a Neometals shareholder; a soaring share price (8-bagger since March 2015), near term lithium oxide mineral production, a dividend cheque not far away and a share buy back to tighten share capital to enhance potential for further share price gains.

Even after the capital initiatives, NMT will hold about $50 million in cash and no doubt NMT's MD Chris Reed has other corporate transactions under the microscope.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 24 Feb 2016 10:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/159724/neometals-to-return-capital-to-shareholders-share-buy-back-67170.html