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Mineral Commodities acquires Norwegian graphite project

Updated: May 20

Graphite from Mineral Commodities’ Skaland project in Norway. Credit: File

After a positive resolution to a legal dispute, Mineral Commodities has finalised its 100 per cent-ownership of the Skaland graphite project in Norway, solidifying its battery anode business segment.

Management says its settlement is a significant boost, allowing it to acquire the remaining 10 per cent share in the project that was owned by BSG Mining for US$1.9 million (AU$2.85 million).

With the dispute arising over the shareholders deed between a subsidiary of Mineral Commodities, MRC Graphite (Norway) and minority shareholder BSG Mining, the parties have now agreed to finalise the matter. MRC Graphite (Norway) agreed to pay US$1.27 million (AU$1.9 million) to BSG by this Friday and the remaining US$633,333 (AU$952,000) by November 17 to assume full ownership of the project.

We are pleased that we came to a settlement with BSG on all outstanding matters, allowing MRC to achieve 100 per cent control of Skaland, a potentially value-accretive investment. Skaland is a critical asset in our battery minerals division strategy and a critical operating asset in Europe. MRC will continue its focus in 2023 towards the successful completion of the graphite ore-to-battery anode piloting for anode materials production from Skaland and Munglinup, which is the final precursor to commercial scale graphitic anode production aimed for 2024. Mineral Commodities interim chief executive officer Adam Bick

Last month, the company also moved forward with a graphite project closer to home when it inked a new deal with the Esperance Tjaltjraak Native Title Aboriginal Corporation (ETNTAC) to progress with its Munglinup graphite project in Western Australia’s South West region.

As part of the deal, a royalty payment of 0.5 per cent of gross proceeds from the sale or disposal of graphite concentrate extracted from the project each year – once production starts – will be payable to the traditional owner group. The payments will fund employment and training opportunities and broader community engagements for Kepa Kuri Wudjari residents.

Operations at Munglinup will be synchronised with the company’s other graphite mine in north-west Norway to enhance its potential to become a noteworthy supplier in the international graphite market.

The company is also a mineral sands producer via its Tormin mineral sands operation in South Africa. It kicked another goal back in May when it tabled a maiden mineral resource at its De Punt project in South Africa of 66.1 million tonnes at an impressive 16.9 per cent total heavy minerals (THM) for 11.19 million tonnes THM.

The official resource brought the company’s total Tormin mineral resource to an estimated 282.6 million tonnes at 10.9 per cent THM, containing a massive 30.8 million tonnes THM. The upgrade represented a 31 per cent increase in Tormin mineral resource tonnes and a whopping 57 per cent increase for in-situ heavy minerals.

And the company says it has even more potential to increase its resource, considering only one of seven targets has been drilled at De Punt.

The development of its graphite projects appear to be well timed with car-makers around the globe looking to lock in graphite supply from sources outside the dominant producer, China, as mined graphite demand for electric vehicle batteries outpaces other uses for the first time.

With Mineral Commodities planning to kick off sales from its Skaland operation as early as next year it may find a queue of heavy hitters waiting on its doorstep.

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