Piedmont Lithium Ltd (ASX:PLL) has entered into a Letter of Intent (LOI) with Ion Carbon & Minerals, LLC to market the quartz, feldspar, and mica produced at the Piedmont Lithium Project in North Carolina, US.
Ion is wholly owned by the AMCI Group, a leading specialist natural resources investor and marketer with a long-standing track record of success across a broad range of commodities.
Ion has an extensive client base in North America which Piedmont and Ion will leverage to gain access to regional industrial minerals markets in the US.
Ongoing test work at SGS Lakefield will produce commercial by-product samples from Piedmont ore for delivery to prospective customers.
Significant and growing markets
Piedmont president and chief executive officer Keith D. Phillips said: “We are very pleased to be partnering with Ion to develop the markets for our important mineral by-products.
“Quartz, feldspar and mica represented a significant proportion of the revenue for the lithium mines operated in North Carolina from the 1950s to the 1990s.
“These are significant and growing markets, particularly in the southeast where much of America’s glass, ceramics and building products production is based.
Potential low-cost producer
“North Carolina alone is home to pure quartz, feldspar and mica mines, but mine depletions over the past several years have led to imports taking significant market share.
“Piedmont is ideally located to enter these markets and should be a low-cost producer given the by-product nature of our activities.
“We hope to secure important customer relationships over the course of 2020 to provide more clarity to the positive economic impact by-products should have on our Project.”
The LOI sets out the key terms on which Piedmont and Ion propose to partner for by-product marketing, including:
- The partnership will have exclusive rights to market quartz, feldspar, and mica production from the project under a formal marketing agreement to be prepared on mutually agreeable terms and conditions;
- The partnership will have an initial term of five years, with an option to extend for an additional five years by mutual agreement; and
- The partnership will be owned and controlled by Ion and Piedmont and governed by a formal operating agreement to be prepared on mutually agreeable terms and conditions.