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Search Minerals moving forward with growing rare earths resource, new PEA and a commercial magnetic separation plant

It has recently been reported that the U.S. Government (subject to approval of the proposal) is likely to widen their definition of “domestic source” in the Defense Production Act to include the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Australia. This is in addition to the current inclusion of Canada and of course the USA. If passed, this is great news for critical material miners located in these countries.

One such company is focused on the high value magnet rare earths and is advancing their project in Canada. Magnet rare earths prices, such as neodymium, have increased very significantly over the past year as EV demand surged.

Search Minerals Inc. (TSXV: SMY | OTCQB: SHCMF) (Search) is developing their rare earths projects in Labrador, Canada. Their three projects include:

  • The Port Hope Simpson (PHS) Property (flagship) – Includes Foxtrot, Deep Fox, Silver Fox, Awesome Fox, and Fox Meadow deposits. Prospective for Neodymium (Nd), Praseodymium (Pr), Dysprosium (Dy), and Terbium (Tb), as well as Zirconium (Zr) and Hafnium (Hf). The updated 2022 PEA is due soon in Q2, 2022.
  • The Henley Harbour Area in Southern Labrador.
  • The Red Wine Complex located in Central Labrador.

Search Minerals PHS Property showing the Foxtrot & Deep Fox deposits and other targets

Source: Search Minerals website

Search’s flagship PHS Property has been the Company’s focus with a PEA completed in 2016 on Foxtrot only, an updated Resource recently released (now includes both Foxtrot & Deep Fox), and an updated PEA to follow very soon. Given the larger resource (hence potentially longer mine life) and higher rare earth prices, the upcoming 2022 PEA is expected to potentially improve significantly on the 2016 PEA. Search President & CEO Greg Andrews, discusses the positive impact on their upcoming PEA in a recent InvestorIntel video here.

Details of the updated resource at Foxtrot and Deep Fox

As a result of the recent updated resource news the Foxtrot resource has grown by approximately 60% from the 2016 estimate and the Deep Fox resource has grown by 25% from the 2019 estimate. Search state in their April 11, 2022 resource announcement: “Revenue attributable to Pr, Nd, Dy, and Tb represent approximately 92% of the total revenue.”

Estimated Mineral Resources for the FOXTROT and DEEP FOX Projects as of December 31, 2021

Source: Search Minerals announcement on April 11, 2022

Both Foxtrot and Deep Fox Resources include open pit (OP) and underground (UG) components as shown on the models below. They will form the basis of the upcoming updated 2022 PEA. In both cases, mineralization remains open at depth.

Models showing the open pit and underground resource at Foxtrot and Deep Fox

Source: Search Minerals announcement on April 11, 2022

Next steps (including steps towards a full commercial magnetic separation plant)

The next steps for Search at their PHS Property will be the 2022 PEA release, further drilling to grow the resource (including at Fox Meadow), and further advancements with off-take agreements. In 2021 Search signed a non-binding MOU with USA Rare Earth LLC for the future delivery of a rare earth mineral concentrate supply containing 500 tpa of NdPr. The MOU also included a plan to expand the collaboration to include discussions regarding separation, marketing, and offtake of a portion of the future production at Search’s Deep Fox and Foxtrot deposits. There will also be the upcoming results from Search’s magnetic separation program using bulk samples from the PHS Property (Foxtrot & Deep Fox). The results of the testing will be used as part of a ‘scale up’ to a full commercial magnetic separation plant.

Search President & CEO, Greg Andrews, states: “We continue with our “Sprint to Production” and this is a very important step to scale up and produce more material for further separation into individual oxides of the permanent magnet material, Neodymium (Nd), Praseodymium (Pr), Dysprosium (Dy) and Terbium (Tb). These are the key elements which create the value in the rare earth element supply chain. Upon producing the oxides, Search will demonstrate the transformation of the permanent magnet oxides into metal.”

Closing remarks

Last month Search released a significant Resource upgrade at Foxtrot and Deep Fox deposits on their PHS Property. The results were strong growing the resources by 60% and 25% respectively. Both remain open at depth and the PHS Property has numerous other exciting rare earth targets such as Silver Fox, Awesome Fox, and Fox Meadow. This means the PHS Property should potentially continue to further grow the total resource size in years to come. Search did recently release encouraging assay results at the Fox Meadow target where Search plans to commence a 6,000 m drill program this fall.

The big next catalyst for Search is the upcoming updated 2022 PEA which should potentially see a significant improvement on the 2016 PEA. Following that it will be interesting to see Search’s progress towards becoming a rare earths miner as well as processor.

Search Minerals trades on a market cap of C$65 million.




Dan Blondal of Nano One Materials on its patented lithium-ion battery cathode technology

In this InvestorIntel interview with host Byron W. King, Nano One Materials Corp.’s (TSX: NANO | OTC: NNOMF | FSE: LBMB) CEO, Director & Founder Dan Blondal provides an update on Nano One’s patented One-Pot process and metal-direct-to-cathode-active-material (M2CAM) technology for production of lithium-ion battery cathode materials.

In the interview, which can also be viewed in full on the InvestorIntel YouTube channel (click here), Dan Blondal talks about the versatility of Nano One’s One-Pot process which is suited for multiple battery chemistries like lithium iron phosphate (LFP), nickel-rich (NMC), and manganese-rich (LNMO) cathode materials. Dan explains how Nano One’s M2CAM technology eliminates 100% of the sulphate waste in traditional standard lithium-ion battery cathode manufacturing to reduce cost, complexity, and carbon footprint of the process.

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About Nano One Materials Corp.

Nano One Materials Corp. (Nano One) is a clean technology company with a patented, scalable and low carbon intensity industrial process for the low-cost production of high-performance lithium-ion battery cathode materials. The technology is applicable to electric vehicle, energy storage, consumer electronic and next generation batteries in the global push for a zero-emission future. Nano One’s One-Pot process, its coated nanocrystal materials and its Metal to Cathode Active Material (M2CAM) technologies address fundamental performance needs and supply chain constraints while reducing costs and carbon footprint. Nano One has received funding from various government programs and the current “Scaling of Advanced Battery Materials Project” is supported by Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) and the Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund of the Province of British Columbia.

To learn more about Nano One Materials Corp., click here

Disclaimer: Nano One Materials Corp. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

This interview, which was produced by InvestorIntel Corp., (IIC), does not contain, nor does it purport to contain, a summary of all the material information concerning the “Company” being interviewed. IIC offers no representations or warranties that any of the information contained in this interview is accurate or complete.

This presentation may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and assumptions of the management of the Company as of the date made. They are inherently susceptible to uncertainty and other factors that could cause actual events/results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements. Additional risks and uncertainties, including those that the Company does not know about now or that it currently deems immaterial, may also adversely affect the Company’s business or any investment therein.

Any projections given are principally intended for use as objectives and are not intended, and should not be taken, as assurances that the projected results will be obtained by the Company. The assumptions used may not prove to be accurate and a potential decline in the Company’s financial condition or results of operations may negatively impact the value of its securities. Prospective investors are urged to review the Company’s profile on Sedar.com and to carry out independent investigations in order to determine their interest in investing in the Company.

If you have any questions surrounding the content of this interview, please contact us at +1 416 792 8228 and/or email us direct at info@investorintel.com.




Avalon’s Don Bubar on the first regional lithium battery materials refinery in Ontario

In this InvestorIntel interview with host Tracy Weslosky, Avalon Advanced Materials Inc.’s (TSX: AVL | OTCQB: AVLNF) President, CEO and Director, Don Bubar talks about Avalon’s recent partnership agreement with an Essar Group company to co-develop Ontario’s first regional lithium battery materials refinery in Thunder Bay, Canada.

In the interview, which can also be viewed in full on the InvestorIntel YouTube channel (click here), Don Bubar says that the setting up of the refinery is the key step in establishing a domestic battery materials supply chain to serve the needs of future electric vehicle and battery manufacturers in North America. Touching upon the Ontario government’s Critical Minerals Strategy to support a domestic electric vehicle supply chain, Don provides an update on the feasibility studies for both the refinery operations and lithium mineral concentrate production at Avalon’s Separation Rapids, Ontario, Project. With the Canadian Federal government also signaling strong support to the domestic critical minerals industry in the 2022 Canadian Federal Budget, Don talks about the renewed interest for Avalon petalite lithium mineral concentrates from high strength, high temperature capable, glass and ceramic manufacturers.

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About Avalon Advanced Materials Inc.

Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. is a Canadian mineral development company specializing in sustainably-produced materials for clean technology. The Company now has four advanced stage projects, providing investors with exposure to lithium, tin and indium, as well as rare earth elements, tantalum, cesium and zirconium. Avalon is currently focusing on developing its Separation Rapids Lithium Project near Kenora, Ontario while continuing to advance other projects, including its 100%-owned Lilypad Cesium-Tantalum-Lithium Project located near Fort Hope, Ontario. Social responsibility and environmental stewardship are corporate cornerstones.

To learn more about Avalon Advanced Materials Inc., click here

Disclaimer: Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

This interview, which was produced by InvestorIntel Corp., (IIC), does not contain, nor does it purport to contain, a summary of all the material information concerning the “Company” being interviewed. IIC offers no representations or warranties that any of the information contained in this interview is accurate or complete.

This presentation may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and assumptions of the management of the Company as of the date made. They are inherently susceptible to uncertainty and other factors that could cause actual events/results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements. Additional risks and uncertainties, including those that the Company does not know about now or that it currently deems immaterial, may also adversely affect the Company’s business or any investment therein.

Any projections given are principally intended for use as objectives and are not intended, and should not be taken, as assurances that the projected results will be obtained by the Company. The assumptions used may not prove to be accurate and a potential decline in the Company’s financial condition or results of operations may negatively impact the value of its securities. Prospective investors are urged to review the Company’s profile on Sedar.com and to carry out independent investigations in order to determine their interest in investing in the Company.

If you have any questions surrounding the content of this interview, please contact us at +1 416 792 8228 and/or email us direct at info@investorintel.com.




Rising demand benefits the only integrated producer of bonded rare earth permanent magnets outside of China

Neo Performance Materials Inc. (TSX: NEO) (Neo) is an almost totally integrated Western (Canadian) company that processes mixed rare earth concentrates to produce separated individual and specifically blended rare earths to produce rare earth metals, alloys, and “bonded” rare earth permanent magnets. What makes Neo special is that they are the only company in the world that operates dual supply chains inside and outside of China for REE separation and REE advanced materials and end-use products. Neo owns the only operating commercial rare earth separation facility outside of Asia. It’s in Europe (Estonia facility) and it has sales and production centers spread across 10 countries globally.

All of the above makes Neo unique as a Western producer of rare earth materials as well as end-use products, which are critical in the green energy and EV revolution.

Award winning facilities

As announced on February 22 and March 28, 2022, Neo won awards for two of its key factories, the first in Thailand and the second in Estonia. The awards were Gold Medals awarded by EcoVadis for 2021 sustainability performance.

The second announcement stated: “This places Neo’s Silmet facility in Sillamäe, Estonia in the top five percent of all facilities around the world reporting to EcoVadis for its sustainability programs in 2022… The Silmet facility processes mixed rare earth feedstock into a variety of high-purity rare earth specialty materials, including neodymium-praseodymium (NdPr) oxide, which is used by Neo’s Magnequench business unit to produce neodymium-iron-boron (NdFeB) magnetic materials and magnets for automotive, factory automation, home appliance, circulation pump, and other applications.”

This impressive recognition is also very well timed given the surging demand for NdFeB magnets used in many EV motors. Global electric car sales finished March 2022 with 851,000 sales for the month (the second best month ever), 60% higher YoY, with market share of 15%.

The global OEM automotive industry today uses mainly sintered NdFeB rare earth permanent magnets, but the use of bonded type NdFeB in this application is growing rapidly. Neo has pioneered the use of bonded NdFeB magnets in automotive applications with Japanese customer/partner, Honda, and this use is expanding. Neo has agreed with European magnet customers to expand its capacity there and to add sintered NdFeB magnets to its product lines. The EU has encouraged and is financially supportive of this move by Neo.

Prices for rare earths materials and end-user products used in the green economy have been surging the past year, due to demand exceeding supply, and this is reflected in Neo’s latest financial results. This supply deficit looks to be baked in for at least the next decade due to the growth of the green economy.

Q4 2021 and Full-Year financial results highlights (in USD)

As reported on March 10, 2022, Neo achieved the following outstanding financial results:

  • “Q4 2021 revenue of $153.4 million higher by 39.0% YoY; full-year 2021 revenue of $539.3 million was higher by 55.5% YoY.
  • Volumes in the fourth quarter of 3,311 tonnes; full-year volumes expanded by 20.2%.
  • Operating income of $12.7 million in the quarter; $59.9 million for the year.
  • Adjusted Net Income for the quarter of $16.1 million, or $0.39 per share, with full-year Adjusted Net Income of $55.0 million, or $1.42 per share.
  • Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter of $19.7 million; 2021 Adjusted EBITDA of $81.9 million was 183.7% higher YoY.
  • Cash balance of $89.0 million after raising $38.0 million from equity offering and distributing $12.8 million in dividends to shareholders.”

As shown above, full-year 2021 revenue was 55.5% higher YoY, based on volume growth of 20.2%. Clearly higher-end product prices helped support the stellar results. Neo sums it up well and the general direction the business is heading by stating:

“Neo reported strong year-over-year (YoY) gains in revenue, volumes, operating income, Adjusted EBITDA, and profitability in the year ended December 31, 2021, driven largely by increased demand for products across all three of its operating divisions, higher selling prices for rare earth materials, and continuing progress in several of the Company’s strategic initiatives.”

I did warn investors that this was what we were expecting from Neo with our December 22, 2021 article: “Neo Performance Materials looks to expand capacity as it rides the tailwind of growing rare earth permanent magnet demand.”

Neo Performance Materials is one of a few Western companies able to process rare earths and make magnets

Source: Neo Performance Materials website

Closing remarks

Neo Performance Materials occupies a rare and critical position in the Western supply chain to produce rare earths specialty products. Demand for powerful rare earth type magnets used in many consumer goods as well as in wind turbines and EVs is expected to surge this decade.

Neo Performance Materials trades on a market cap of C$546 million and a current PE of 17.6. 2022 PE is forecast at 7.82.

The next catalyst for Neo will be the Q1, 2022 earning results due out before the market opens on May 13, 2022. Stay tuned.




Murchison counting on critical materials close to home with 2 deposits and camp scale potential

Vladimir Putin’s attack on Ukraine has reinforced the need for countries around the world to accelerate their efforts to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and cut greenhouse gas emissions, leading to clean energy technologies becoming one of the fastest growing segments of the economy. Some of the main inputs in these new technologies are critical metals like copper, cobalt, nickel and zinc. The World Bank forecasts that production of critical minerals and metals must increase by as much as 500% to produce the raw inputs necessary to meet projected demand. Analysts are expecting that over the next two decades nickel and cobalt will see a 20 fold increase in demand, with zinc and copper seeing an effective doubling in demand. That tells me inflation isn’t easing anytime soon but that can be a discussion for another day. In order for the world economy to meet this increasing demand in energy metals, discoveries of deposits will need to be made in the near term and as we watch sanctions mount against Russia, the location of those deposits becomes increasingly important.

Domestic supply and processing of these minerals and materials will become an increasingly crucial component to any nation looking to have a realistic ability to achieve emissions targets. That’s why junior mining companies, such as Murchison Minerals Ltd. (TSXV: MUR | OTCQB: MURMF), play a significant role in the discovery of the minerals needed for the quickly evolving clean energy revolution. Murchison is focused on the exploration and development of the 100% owned HPM (Haut-Plateau de la Manicouagan) project in Quebec and the exploration and development of the 100%-owned Brabant-McKenzie VMS zinc‐copper‐silver deposit located on the Brabant Lake property in north‐central Saskatchewan. The Company also has an option to earn 100% interest in the Barraute-Landrienne zinc-silver-gold project in Quebec. These are two of the best mining jurisdictions in Canada and arguably the world. Additionally, these projects are surrounded by excellent, established infrastructure.

The HPM property is located between Baie-Comeau and Fermont, Québec, about 20 km from an all-season road connecting the two communities, 8 km to railroad, and about 225 km to the deep water Port of Sept Iles. In December, 2021 the Company acquired the majority land position in the eastern Haut-Plateau region. With the newly acquired claims, Murchison has now increased the size of the HPM project area by a factor of 4, from 13,897 hectares to 57,586 hectares. First assay results from the inaugural drill program at the PYC Target include Hole PYC21-007 drilled to a depth of 158 m intersected three broad zones of Ni-Cu-Co-bearing sulphide mineralization totaling 62.21 m of composite thickness including 25.5 m grading 0.30% Ni Eq and 27.4 m grading 0.23% Ni Eq while Hole PYC21-008 drilled to a depth of 182 m intersected five broad zones totaling 69.9 m of composite thickness including 39.5 m grading 0.24% Ni Eq and 13.0 m grading 0.27% Ni Eq. Assay results for the remaining six holes, released two weeks ago, confirm the presence of broad zones of near surface low-grade nickel, copper, cobalt mineralization across the drilled portion of the target.

The PYC Target is only one of multiple Ni-Cu-Co prospects on the HPM Project where historical work and prospecting completed at Barre De Fer, located only 1.5 km away, resulted in the best historic results from HPM-08-03 of 43.15 m at 1.73% Ni, 0.90% Cu, and 0.09% Co. The Company also completed prospecting at the Syrah Target, located just 350 metres from the Barre de Fer prospect, during the 2021 fall drill program. Syrah results confirm Ni-Cu-Co sulphide mineralized outcrops and sub-crops over approximately a 375-metre strike length, within the footprint of an approximately 600- metre-long conductive geophysical anomaly. Newly discovered mineralization to the northeast extending the surface strike length by approximately 200 metres and assaying as high as 0.69% Ni Equivalent. Syrah is considered a high-priority exploration target, making it a priority for drill testing during the summer 2022 program.

One can be excused for focusing solely on the HPM Project with so much going on and prospect after prospect showing potential. But we can’t forget about the Brabant McKenzie deposit that already has an established resource of Inferred: 7.6 million tonnes @ 6.29% ZnEq and Indicated: 2.1 million tonnes @ 9.98% ZnEq. There are 10 highly prospective VMS targets, with VMS style mineralization already intersected at Main Lake and Betty target areas. But for now, the Company is focused on the HPM project with the recently completed recompilation and modeling of holes drilled at the Barre de Fer zone indicating significant potential for expansion of high-grade nickel-copper-cobalt zones. A VTEM survey covering all of HPM, commenced on April 21st, 2022 with Murchison moving forward with preparations for a summer drill program on the HPM property focusing on Barre de Fer and Syrah.

The completion of an early warrant incentive program has resulted in the addition of C$1.3 million in cash to go with the C$1.8 million the Company finished 2021 with. This capital will go a long way towards funding the 2022 summer program. With a market cap of only C$18.8 million there is plenty of leverage for investors looking for exposure to zinc, nickel and copper in a stable, mining friendly part of the world.




Ucore CEO Pat Ryan on becoming a key supplier of critical materials to Tier 1 component makers

In this discussion, InvestorIntel’s Byron W. King interviews Pat Ryan, Chairman and CEO of Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSXV: UCU | OTCQX: UURAF). They discuss the rapid move to electrification within the global auto industry, and how Ucore is positioned to become a key supplier of critical metals to Tier 1 component makers. Presently, Ucore is focused on a specific, highly profitable, downstream market segment that goes well beyond mining and mineral concentration. Ucore has strong support for startup operations from the State of Alaska, with eventual plans to build out facilities in other areas of North America to meet the fast-growing demand for rare earth materials.

To watch the full interview, click here

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About Ucore Rare Metals Inc.

Ucore is focused on rare- and critical-metals resources, extraction, beneficiation, and separation technologies with the potential for production, growth, and scalability. Ucore has a 100% ownership stake in the Bokan-Dotson Ridge Rare Earth Element Project in Southeast Alaska, USA. Ucore’s vision and plan is to become a leading advanced technology company, providing best-in-class metal separation products and services to the mining and mineral extraction industry.

Through strategic partnerships, Ucore’s vision includes disrupting the People’s Republic of China’s control of the US REE supply chain through the development of a heavy and light rare-earth processing facility – the Alaska Strategic Metals Complex in Southeast Alaska and the long-term development of Ucore’s heavy-rare-earth-element mineral-resource property located at Bokan Mountain on Prince of Wales Island, Alaska.

To learn more about Ucore Rare Metals Inc., click here

Disclaimer: Ucore Rare Metals Inc. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

This interview, which was produced by InvestorIntel Corp., (IIC), does not contain, nor does it purport to contain, a summary of all the material information concerning the “Company” being interviewed. IIC offers no representations or warranties that any of the information contained in this interview is accurate or complete.

This presentation may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and assumptions of the management of the Company as of the date made. They are inherently susceptible to uncertainty and other factors that could cause actual events/results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements. Additional risks and uncertainties, including those that the Company does not know about now or that it currently deems immaterial, may also adversely affect the Company’s business or any investment therein.

Any projections given are principally intended for use as objectives and are not intended, and should not be taken, as assurances that the projected results will be obtained by the Company. The assumptions used may not prove to be accurate and a potential decline in the Company’s financial condition or results of operations may negatively impact the value of its securities. Prospective investors are urged to review the Company’s profile on Sedar.com and to carry out independent investigations in order to determine their interest in investing in the Company.

If you have any questions surrounding the content of this interview, please contact us at +1 416 792 8228 and/or email us direct at info@investorintel.com.




Greg Andrews of Search Minerals on the positive impact of their updated resource estimate on its coming PEA

In this InvestorIntel interview with host Tracy Weslosky, Search Minerals Inc.’s (TSXV: SMY | OTCQB: SHCMF) President, CEO, and Director, Greg Andrews, discusses the positive impact on its upcoming PEA of the recently increased mineral resource estimates for Search Minerals’ Deep Fox and Foxtrot Critical Rare Earth Element properties in South-East Labrador.

In the interview, which can also be viewed in full on the InvestorIntel YouTube channel (click here), Greg Andrews tells InvestorIntel that its updated resource estimates will form the basis of Search’s upcoming Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA). He goes on to explain how the PEA will take into account the significance of both the Deep Fox and Foxtrot properties. With Search Minerals positioned to become a reliable source of rare earths in North America, Greg also comments on how the 2022 Canadian Federal Budget is likely “to spur investment into all critical minerals, and the rare earths in particular.”

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About Search Minerals Inc.

Led by a proven management team and board of directors, Search is focused on finding and developing Critical Rare Earths Elements (CREE), Zirconium (Zr) and Hafnium (Hf) resources within the emerging Port Hope Simpson – St. Lewis CREE District of South East Labrador. The Company controls a belt 63 km long and 2 km wide and is road accessible, on tidewater, and located within 3 local communities. Search has completed a preliminary economic assessment report for FOXTROT, and a resource estimate for DEEP FOX. Search is also working on three exploration prospects along the belt which include: FOX MEADOW, SILVER FOX and AWESOME FOX.

Search has continued to optimize our patented Direct Extraction Process technology with the support from the Department of Industry, Energy and Technology, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, and from the Atlantic Canada Opportunity Agency. We have completed two pilot plant operations and produced highly purified mixed rare earth carbonate concentrate and mixed REO concentrate for separation and refining. We also recognize the continued support by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador for its Junior Exploration Program.

Search Minerals was selected to participate in the Government of Canada Accelerated Growth Service (“AGS”) initiative, which supports high growth companies. AGS, as a ‘one-stop shop’ model, provides Search with coordinated access to Government of Canada resources as Search continues to move quickly to production and contribute to the establishment of a stable and secure rare earth element North American and European supply chain.

To learn more about Search Minerals Inc., click here

Disclaimer: Search Minerals Inc. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

This interview, which was produced by InvestorIntel Corp., (IIC), does not contain, nor does it purport to contain, a summary of all the material information concerning the “Company” being interviewed. IIC offers no representations or warranties that any of the information contained in this interview is accurate or complete.

This presentation may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and assumptions of the management of the Company as of the date made. They are inherently susceptible to uncertainty and other factors that could cause actual events/results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements. Additional risks and uncertainties, including those that the Company does not know about now or that it currently deems immaterial, may also adversely affect the Company’s business or any investment therein.

Any projections given are principally intended for use as objectives and are not intended, and should not be taken, as assurances that the projected results will be obtained by the Company. The assumptions used may not prove to be accurate and a potential decline in the Company’s financial condition or results of operations may negatively impact the value of its securities. Prospective investors are urged to review the Company’s profile on Sedar.com and to carry out independent investigations in order to determine their interest in investing in the Company.

If you have any questions surrounding the content of this interview, please contact us at +1 416 792 8228 and/or email us direct at info@investorintel.com.




With lithium demand skyrocketing here are 5 early-stage lithium junior miners to watch

With lithium demand projected to increase 10-11 fold this decade, there is a huge opportunity for successful lithium junior miners to prosper. Last year Rio Tinto was quoted as saying that “filling the supply gap will require over 60 Jadar projects”.

Then just last month Tesla CEO Elon Musk said (Tesla Q1 2022 earnings call transcript): “…can more people please get into the lithium business? Do you like minting money? Well, the lithium business is for you…” Musk also said on Twitter: “Price of lithium has gone to insane levels! Tesla might actually have to get into the mining & refining directly at scale unless costs improve.

Of course, industry experts have been warning of EV metals supply deficits for some years, but it appears these warnings mostly fell on deaf ears. With this background in mind, today we take a look at some early-stage lithium junior companies with the potential to help fill the lithium supply gap in the second half of this decade.

China lithium carbonate spot prices – up about 6x over the past year due to lithium shortages

Source: Trading Economics

5 early-stage lithium junior miners to watch out for in 2022 (in no particular order)

  1. Essential Metals Limited (ASX: ESS)
  2. Green Technology Metals Limited (ASX: GT1)
  3. Metals Australia Ltd. (ASX: MLS)
  4. Lithium South Development Corporation (TSXV: LIS | OTCQB: LISMF)
  5. Winsome Resources Limited (ASX: WR1)

Essential Metals Limited (ASX: ESS)

Essential Metals is an Australian exploration company with 9 projects (lithium, gold, gold JV, and nickel JV) all in Western Australia (WA). Three of the projects are 100% owned and 6 are JV’s with other companies, with ESS retaining a 20-30% interest (see below).

Essential Metal’s flagship project is their 100% owned Pioneer Dome Lithium Project in WA. The Project is located in a known lithium corridor and the gold-rich Eastern Goldfields region of WA, which contains the Mt Marion, Bald Hill and Buldania lithium mines/projects. The Project has a reasonable sized JORC compliant Total Resource of 11.2Mt at 1.21% Li2O, still with exploration upside. The Resource starts from or near surface. Drill assay results from the recent campaign are due out by the end of May 2022.

Essential Metals also has two other 100% owned gold projects in WA, namely the Golden Ridge Project (100% owned), 20kms from the Kalgoorlie super pit and the Juglah Dome Project, 60km east-southeast of Kalgoorlie. In addition, the Company has numerous JV projects including Acra Gold Project JV (25% interest), Kangan Gold Project JV (30%), Balagundi Gold Project Farmin/JV (25%), Larkinville Gold Project Farmin/JV (25% gold interest) (hosts a JORC Resource of 19,700 t @ 3.02 g/t for 11,600 oz. Au), Blair-Golden Ridge Nickel Farmin/JV (25% nickel interest) and Wattle Dam Nickel Joint Venture (20% nickel interest).

Essential Metals trades on a market cap of A$162 million.

Essential Metals summary showing the Pioneer Dome Lithium Project location near other successful lithium mines and projects in WA

Source: Essential Metals company presentation

Green Technology Metals Limited (ASX: GT1)

Green Technology Metals (GT1) has multiple lithium projects (options to acquire, some at 80% interest others at 100% interest) spread over 39,982 hectares in Ontario, Canada. GT1’s most advanced project is the Seymour Lithium Project with a JORC Total Mineral Resource of 4.8Mt @ 1.25%. Within the Seymour Project, drill results include an impressive 40m @ 1.54% Li2O. When combining all GT1’s Ontario Lithium Projects the target resource is 50-60 MT @ 0.8-1.5% Li2O.

An updated resource estimate is targeted for Q2, 2022. Management is top tier and highly experienced.

Green Technology Metals trades on a market cap of A$212 million.

GT1’s portfolio of multiple lithium projects in Ontario Canada

Source: GT1 website

Metals Australia Ltd. (ASX: MLS)

Metals Australia is an Australian junior miner with several projects. Their most advanced project is the Lac Rainy Nord Graphite Project in Quebec, Canada with an Indicated and Inferred Resource of 13.3Mt at 11.5% TGC for 1.529M tonnes of contained graphite.

With regards to lithium, Metals Australia 100% owns the promising Manindi Lithium and Zinc Project in WA. The Project has several lithium-cesium-tantalum (LCT) pegmatites spread over a total 3km strike length. Individual pegmatites have strike lengths of over 300m and widths of up to 25-30m. Past drilling includes intersections of 15m @ 1.2% Li2O, 117 Ta205 from 34m. Drilling is ongoing notably at the Foundation pegmatite where consistently high grade lithium grab samples (1% Li2O and >0.4% Rb) have been detected over the entire 500m strike length. Assay results are expected shortly. Manindi also has an existing JORC 2012 Resource estimate of 1.08Mt at 6.52% Zn, 0.26% Cu and 3.19g/t Ag.

Metals Australia trades on a market cap of A$54 million.

Lithium South Development Corporation (TSXV: LIS | OTCQB: LISMF)

Lithium South Development Corporation (Lithium South) is already quite advanced at their 100% owned Hombre Muerto North Lithium Brine Project in Argentina. The Project lies near several billion-dollar projects such as Livent’s lithium mine, Allkem’s Sal de Vida project, and POSCO’s quite new project purchased for US$280 million. Hombre Muerto is the premiere salar in Argentina, known for very high grade lithium and very low impurities.

The Hombre Muerto North Project has an M&I Resource of 571,000t contained LCE, with an excellent grade of 756mg/L, and a very low Mg/Li ratio of 2.6:1. Drilling is about to begin at their Alba Sabrina claim with results to follow most likely later in Q2, 2022. The Resource has potential to grow significantly from here.

Lithium South trades on a market cap of only C$68 million.

Winsome Resources Limited (ASX: WR1)

Winsome Resources is a lithium explorer focused on their 4, 100% owned, projects spread over 50,000 Ha in Quebec, Canada. The Projects are Cancet, Adina, Sirmac-Clappier, and Decelles (option to acquire 100%).

The flagship Cancet Lithium Project has had outstanding previous drilling success and boasts a JORC Exploration Target of 15-25Mt @ 1-2% Li2O + 100-250ppm Ta2O5. The past drilling includes 59 holes for 5,216m averaging ~70m drill depth defining a shallow high-grade lithium deposit. Drilling will continue in 2022 with a substantial maiden Resource estimated expected later this year.

Winsome Resources trades on a market cap of A$66 million.

Summary of Winsome Resources 4 lithium projects in Quebec, Canada

Source: Winsome Resources company presentation

Closing remarks

Investing in early-stage lithium juniors carries higher risk and reward.

Of the 5 companies discussed in this article three (Essential Metals, Green Technology Metals, Lithium South Development Corp.) already have a lithium resource, one (Winsome Resources) has defined a lithium deposit with a resource estimate due later in 2022, and the other (Metals Australia) has a graphite and a zinc-copper-silver resource with an exciting lithium project with drill results out soon.

I could also include Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. (TSX: AVL | OTCQB: AVLNF) in this group, but I already wrote on them recently here, discussing their lithium projects, lithium resource, and plans for a JV lithium refinery in Thunder Bay which were given a huge boost recently as you can read here.

Finally to answer Elon’s question: “Can more people please get into the lithium business?” The problem is it takes at least 5-10 years to build a lithium mine from scratch. I will finish with two key quotes last month from lithium market experts:

  • Benchmark Mineral Intelligence was quoted stating: “Battery capacity is currently growing at twice the speed of lithium raw material supply.
  • Mr. Lithium, Joe Lowry was quoted stating: “I believe there will be a day in the future when lithium is in oversupply, but it won’t be in this decade…..You can build a battery factory in two years, but it takes up to a decade to bring on a lithium project.”

Disclosure: The author is long ALL the lithium companies mentioned in this article and intends to hold long term.




How to Play the Coming Market Cleanup – Including Five Names To Watch

Broad markets are down this week in a wide, deep selloff. Or for optimists out there it’s a general cleanup across the spectrum, punishing the overly ambitious. Gold is down too, as I’ll discuss below.

Here’s what’s going on, and towards the end I’ll list five “mine and minerals” ideas on how to play it all.

First, and obviously, markets have declined based on negative sentiment. And why? After all, is there any good news out there? Consider:

  • War in Ukraine, rapidly emerging as a new, generational East-West struggle.
  • Structural, built-in inflation across every economy in the world.
  • High oil and natural gas prices, with production and supply issues worldwide that have translated into shortages.
  • The nat-gas shortages have led to a lack of fertilizer which – rolled in with high oil/diesel prices – foretells of eventual, widespread food scarcity.
  • All of the above, while the global cargo ship economy remains mired in clogged ports, amplified by Covid shutdowns in China.
  • And people have finally caught onto the racket of those high flying, profitless tech companies with business plans that lose money, seemingly forever.

I could go on, but you get the picture. It’s a mess out there and getting messier. Not exactly the foundation of a booming global economy as 2022 unfolds.

So yes, people feel negative, sell out, and go to cash. They de-risk, so to speak.

Which brings us to gold, which is sliding. And here’s the quandary: Why sell gold into a de-risking market? Gold ought to represent long-term security in a time of risk, right?

The sell-side argument is that interest rates are rising, and rising rates raise the carry cost for holding gold. That is, physical gold is “just metal” and doesn’t pay a dividend. So, every ounce in the vault is a missed opportunity to generate cash. And the imputed loss on gold (i.e., versus holding cash) is greater when interest rates are high.

It’s not difficult to understand the argument, but I don’t buy it. Because look at the situation from a different angle.

Per the U.S. government’s own statistics, inflation is running in the 8.5% range – and the true number might be twice that if you follow what is called “shadow statistics.” In that respect, holding cash also has a cost, namely that 8.5% inflation rate (or more) per year of vanishing purchasing power.

Here’s the investor choice: hold cash and generate minor amounts of interest in an environment of rising inflation. Or hold gold and protect the wealth basis against declining purchasing power over time.

Indeed, the Fed threatens the world with small interest rate increases of 0.25% or even 0.5%. Okay, but that’s insignificant when compared with the 8.5% (or more) declining value of cash.

So, why have people sold gold down in recent days? Well, sometimes you don’t sell what you want to sell. You sell what you have to sell. Like if you need fast cash.

You sell gold because it’s liquid and always catches a bid. That’s not necessarily the case with many other investment ideas.

During market sell-downs the price of gold often drops early, such as when overstretched people need cash to cover margin calls. But after that early tumble, gold tends to be among the first plays to recover on the other side of the selloff and cleanup.

Along with the declining price of gold, metal miners often head down too. Good companies drop in value for no good reason. The list is long and includes names that hold great assets with serious ore in the ground, coupled with excellent geologic work, facilities, workforce and management teams.

There’s no saying how long the current selloff will last. Will the market find a bottom and then head back up? Or will more downside yet unfurl? Nobody really knows, and things can change in a matter of hours.

But along these lines, I have five names for you, companies in the gold and related metals space that have tumbled in recent days into bargain-hunt land:

One great up-and-running metal miner is Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd. (NYSE American: ASM | TSX: ASM). This company has operated near Durango, Mexico since 1968. The ore body is a deep-running series of veins that were first discovered in 1548 by Spanish explorers/conquistadores. There’s a full package of mineshafts, mills and processing facilities. Much of the operation was closed during Covid, but it’s all getting back into production. Ore grades are excellent, with continuing discovery as mining progresses. Plus, an offtake agreement with Samsung for all the metals.

And here are a couple of names for companies well-along in the exploration side, with superb results to date and great prospects ahead:

Take a look at American Pacific Mining Corp. (CSE: USGD | OTCQX: USGDF). This company controls a major copper exploration play in Madison, Montana and is partnered-up with giant Rio Tinto to explore a skarn-porphyry, mineral-bearing body. Progress – meaning mineralization uncovered – has been excellent over the past 18 months, with numerous unreleased drill results still to come. Meanwhile, Am-Pac holds 100% of two other outstanding, high-grade, near-surface gold plays in hard-rock mining country in Nevada.

And look at Group Ten Metals, Inc. (TSXV: PGE | OTCQB: PGEZF). This is another company that works in the nickel-platinum belt of Montana, adjacent to property controlled by Sibanye-Stillwater. Group Ten controls a vast land package and has had remarkable success identifying high-grade zones of copper-nickel, along with platinum group metals, gold, silver and even chrome. Indeed, it’s a “battery metals” play from numerous angles.

For early-stage gold exploration, look at TRU Precious Metals Corp. (TSXV: TRU | OTCQB: TRUIF). The company works in Newfoundland, in a highly prospective gold-copper belt. Its neighbors include two well-known names, Marathon Gold and Newfound Gold Corp., and TRU is directly on the geologic trend that connects these other two plays. Early sampling, mapping and geophysics are promising, with drill results offering strong promise.

And finally, another early-stage explorer, Romios Gold Resources Inc. (TSXV: RG | OTCQB: RMIOF). This is what geologists call a “hip pocket” play, an intriguing collection of historically explored and mined projects across Canada and in Nevada. Right now, the focus is on two high-grade works that were picked in the olden days, but abandoned to the mists of time due to low-priced gold. Modern geophysics and drilling reveal significant new mineralized zones. Romios is a small-cap play, but with the ability to move on news from the drill deck.

That’s all for now…  Thank you for reading.




Fjordland Exploration looks to ride nickel surge with 4 projects in Canada

The nickel market has been red hot in 2022 as Russian supply chain risks intensified. Russia is a major nickel exporter. The huge spike in the chart was caused by a short-seller squeeze that resulted in the London Metals Exchange having to halt nickel trading.

Nickel one year price chart showing nickel’s steady rise on strong demand and constrained supply, particularly with concerns over Russian supply

Source: Trading Economics

Nickel miners have naturally benefited from higher nickel prices over the past year. The nickel miners that tend to do best are those with growing nickel sulphide projects in safe jurisdictions. Today’s company has 4 projects (nickel sulfide and copper-gold) in the safe jurisdiction of Canada.

Fjordland Exploration Inc. (TSXV: FEX) (Fjordland) is an exploration stage miner with a focus on nickel, copper, and gold in Canada.

Fjordland’s four projects in Canada include:

  • South Voisey’s Bay Project (currently owns 75% with an option to earn-in to a 100% interest). 29,400 hectares (29.4 Sq.Km) prospective for nickel, copper and cobalt. Note: Ivanhoe Electric is a private company led by Robert Friedland, which has the right to earn 65% of the project from Fjordland once Ivanhoe Electric has spent $5 million.
  • Renzy Nickel-Copper Project (option to earn-in to a 100% interest). 86 km2 property with the past producing Renzy Mine and a Historical NI-43-101 Resource estimate (indicated 51,000 tonnes 0.79% Ni and 0.72% Cu) not yet to be relied upon. Past drilling included 10.8 m of 1.3% nickel and 1.8% copper.
  • Milligan West Project (43% JV partner with Northwest Copper Corp). Copper-gold porphyry potential. The Project lies immediately west of Centerra’s Mt. Milligan Mine.
  • Witch Project (100% interest) – 100 km2 property about 35kms from the Milligan West Project. Copper-gold porphyry potential.

A summary and location map showing Fjordland’s four exploration projects in Canada

Source: Fjordland Exploration Inc. company presentation

Next steps for Fjordland

In 2022 Fjordland will be reviewing data from their Witch Project acquisition. They also expect to receive project funding from Ivanhoe Electric as part of their agreement at the South Voisey’s Bay Project. Fjordland is also currently drilling at their Renzy Nickel Copper Project with a $1 million fully funded program which is expected to be completed by the end of Q2 2022. Results to follow.

Closing remarks

For investors, key attractions of Fjordland are the current low market cap of just C$7 million and the potential exploration upside in some of the best land positions in Canada. Voisey’s Bay is world renowned for nickel with the world’s largest nickel producer Vale operating there. Fjordland has four well-located Canadian projects with potential for nickel, copper, cobalt, and gold.

As of March 2022, management and insider ownership (includes Friedland’s Ivanhoe Electric) is an impressive 45%.

Due to the early stage investors will need plenty of patience while we wait to see what exploration success Fjordland has. Drill results from the Renzy Nickel Copper Project are a key potential stock catalyst in the coming months. Risk is therefore higher due to the early stage, however so is the potential reward. Stay tuned.