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Lithium joint venture doubles Lodestar share price

Updated: Mar 24

Lodestar Minerals was among the leaders of last week’s ASX list of movers and shakers. Credit: File

Lodestar Minerals had Western Australian nickel on its mind in early 2021 when it bought out all the issued capital of a group of private investors known as “Goldfellas”.

Fast-forward a couple of years and the above deal, which ultimately lobbed Lodestar with 20 per cent of a lithium-focused joint venture (JV) with Future Battery Minerals, last week gave the company’s share price a timely boost … with the strong likelihood of more joy to come.

While Fremantle-based Lodestar put out its own gold assay results from its flagship and 100 per cent-owned Earaheedy project, 110km north of Wiluna, ASX punters clearly also liked what its JV with Future Battery revealed in terms of more high-grade lithium hits at the Kangaroo Hills project near the historic WA Goldfields town of Coolgardie.

The company’s stock doubled on the back of its dual announcements to 0.8 cents from the previous week’s close of 0.4c. And it kept running through the week, touching a year-high of 1c during intraday trading as another 21.5 million shares changed hands.

The joint venture’s Kangaroo Hills project delivered some solid lithium results last week from its Big Red prospect, with a 23m hit going 1.19 per cent lithium oxide from 44m. Additional shallow results returned 10m at 1.3 per cent lithium oxide from 25m and a 5.9m intercept grading 1.15 per cent lithium oxide from surface. The latest hits build on some significant results at the exciting prospect that include 29m reading 1.36 per cent lithium oxide from 38m and 27m at 1.32 per cent lithium oxide from 64m.

Drilling at Lodestar Minerals and Future Battery Minerals’ Kangaroo Hills joint venture. Credit: File

Formerly known as Auroch Minerals before a savvy name change in March this year, Future Battery has embraced the search for lithium and last year picked up an 80 per cent stake in the Nevada lithium project based in the US State of the same name.

While clearly benefitting from its JV with Future Battery at Kangaroo Hills, Lodestar is primarily focused on Earaheedy, where it is on the search for copper-gold mineralisation, in addition to zinc, lead and silver. Historic drilling at the site intercepted high-grade copper including 2m at 4.65 per cent and 3m grading 1.97 per cent.

The company last week recorded several gold hits from first-pass air-core (AC) drilling, with copper and multi-element assays pending.

This is a great start for Lodestar at our flagship Earaheedy Project. These are fantastic results for first pass wide spaced air-core drilling and clearly confirm the abundant potential of the Earaheedy Project to host both base metal and gold mineralisation. This is the first time that any explorer has intersected significant gold in the project area and to do so at multiple targets demonstrates the potential scale of the mineralised system or systems. Lodestar Minerals managing director Ed Turner

Perpetual Resources led all ASX runners last week when it jumped aboard the lithium train and surged a massive 255 per cent after entering a binding option agreement to acquire a highly-prospective exploration tenement package in the mining-friendly Brazilian State of Minas Gerais. The deal gives the company access to four exploration permits in the Eastern Brazilian Pegmatite District – a globally recognised hub for hard-rock lithium spodumene deposits.

The region accounts for all officially-recognised lithium reserves in Brazil. Perpetual’s four tenements cover a massive amount of ground in the district at more than 3600 hectares. Its share price hiked from 0.9c to 3.2c.

Indiana Resources saw a 144 per cent rise in its share price after the company sent a strongly-worded letter to the Tanzanian Solicitor General to demand about $167 million for the unlawful expropriation of its partly-owned Ntaka Hill nickel project in the African nation. The letter of demand follows an award from the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes – part of the World Bank – when the United Republic of Tanzania was ordered to pay about $160 million in compensation.

Indiana has increased its demand to include tribunal and legal costs. Its share price touched 10c off a previous close of just 4.1c.

Sydney-based explorer Metal Bank jumped 76 per cent after securing the rights to search for copper in historic mining areas in Jordan. The company has entered into two agreements, with the Jordan Ministry for Energy and Mineral Resources, granting exclusive exploration and reconnaissance rights in the Middle East nation.

The deal includes exploration rights at Malaqa, based around the historically-significant Um el Amad copper mine – also known as the Mother of Pillars mine – in an area considered prospective for sediment-hosted stratiform copper deposits. The agreement also includes the right to regional reconnaissance for copper in the Wadi Arab area, which has seen only limited previous exploration.

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