Australia

RPM Automotive Group Ltd (ASX:RPM) has appointed Alex Goodman to the board of directors as a non-executive director.

Goodmas has a strong background in private equity, business expansion of private companies and executive management in global companies such as IBM, Boston-based Lotus and Amdahl in the Silicon Valley.

He has sat on several boards which included activities such as investment management and mergers and acquisitions and has constructed acquisitions with key investors, including some of Australias leading investor families.

“Perfect addition”

RPM co-founder Clive Finkelstein said: “Alex is the perfect addition to the RPM team – his knowledge and understanding of the landscape will be a massive value-add to the RPMAG board.

“His appointment marks the final stage in the complete transformation of the RTO.”

Non-executive direcRead More – Source

Australia

Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) continues to make progress with its plan for early production of coking coal from the Ovoot project in northern Mongolia.

The company is advancing plans for a 560-kilometre special-purpose road to transport coal from the Ovoot Early Development Project (OEDP) to the nearest railhead at Erdenet.

A Definitive Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA) is also being advanced for the OEDP in accordance with World Banks International Finance Corporations (IFC) Equator Principles.

DFS inclusions

Pending approval for the DEIA and the annual mine plan, mine site activities can begin prior to completing the OEDP definitive feasibility study (DFS).

The OEDP will include an open pit development of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project and trucking up to 4 million tonnes annually of washed coking coal along the special-purpose road to Erdenet.

A major recent development with the road has been its inclusion in the 2030 Road Development Plan for the Khuvsgul aimag (province).

Benefits of road

This road will have two major benefits for local communities along its path:

  1. It will allow for a 200 kilometres sealed road connection between the Mogoin Gol community (adjacent to Ovoot) and the Khuvsgul capital of Murun.
  2. It will ensure that coal transport from Murun to Erdenet will be along the purpose-built road, removing truck traffic from an existing sealed road which is dedicated to local and tourist traffic between the two cities.

A November 2019 pre-feasibility study update for the OEDP included a construction cost estimate of US$165 million for the road which makes up two-thirds of the total OEDP development capital cost of US$259 million.

Approvals process

Aspire began a definitive engineering study in the March quarter of 2019 but fieldwork was put on hold while local approvals regarding the preferred route were received from the 13 soums along the expected road path.

While approvals were received from two soums the other five soums required the Khuvsgul aimag government to approve the path within the province.

The alignment was studied by the aimag government and it has now been included in the Khuvsgul 2030 Road Development Plan.

This approval allows for community engagement with each of the soums along the path to gain final Ministry approval for the alignment and completion of the definitive engineering study.

Engagement with communities

Aspire is also continuing productive engagement with the local Tsetserleg soum government and communities where the Ovoot project is located in order to gain the necessary approvals to progress the OEDP DFS.

A key approval is to be received from the Ministry of Environment for the DEIA which includes local stakeholder information sharing and engagement, flora and fauna surveys, ethnological surveys and social impact assessments.

Management and mitigation plans for the OEDP willRead More – Source

Australia

Compumedics Limited (ASX:CMP) has confirmed US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of its Neuroscan Orion LifeSpan™ Magnetoencephalography (MEG) system.

The approval follows the successful installation and first phase commissioning of the system at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Arizona, USA.

MEG is a neuroimaging technique for mapping brain activity by recording magnetic fields produced by electrical currents occurring naturally in the brain.

Compumedics chairman and chief executive officer Dr David Burton said the company was pleased to achieve this milestone.

He said: “Receiving 510(K) clearance from the FDA, whilst expected, it is nevertheless satisfying and validating after all the R &D over many years.

“Much like MRI technology in the late 1980s which transitioned from research to clinical application, we expect MEG to follow a similar trajectory.”

The FDA clearance now allows for routine clinical use of the single MEG device, primarily for epilepsy and pre-surgical brain function mapping.

“The foundation for commercialisation”

With the FDA approval in place, Compumedics may now enter the lucrative US clinical market with its technology.

Burton added: “It represents a foundation for the commercialisation of our MEG technology.

"This market clearance will allow us to transition from product development to full commercialisation.

“Compumedics continues to actively pursue 40 identified MEG opportunities around the world, with four opportunities substantively advanced.”

Each system will typically sell for around US$3 million to US$4 million, depending on specification.

Additionally, sites using the system may now routinely bill both private and public insurance plans for MEG examinations.

Ground-breaking features

The MEG hardware approval comes in addition to tRead More – Source

Australia

Cobalt Blue Holdings Ltd (ASX:COB) has outlined its near to mid-term strategy to develop the Broken Hill Cobalt Project (BHCP) alongside commercialising its proprietary cobalt processing technology.

This two-part strategy has been developed by the pure-play cobalt company which has recently secured 100% ownership of the BHCP, which is just outside the traditional mining centre of Broken Hill.

Chief executive officer Joe Kaderavek explains the key aspects of the strategy to Proactive.

PROACTIVE: Can you articulate the Cobalt Blue Holdings (COB) strategy?

CEO: COB has a two-part strategy:

  1. Bringing the BHCP into production; and
  2. Commercialisation of COBs proprietary technology through COB Partnerships

With regards to our second aim, COB is examining opportunities to apply the technology to third-party cobalt/copper resources. There are two third-party test work programs underway:

  • Millennium Project (100% Global Energy Metals Corporation – CVE:GEMX) – Cloncurry district, North Queensland. COB is focused on the extraction of cobalt, copper and gold. This is an exciting opportunity as we are dealing with Mt Isa style mineralisation over a very large district. Positive test results will unlock a new territory for our technology, with final results expected shortly.
  • Carrapateena Mine (100% OZ Minerals Ltd – ASX:OZL). OZL has recently brought Carrapateena into operation to produce copper concentrates. OZL has engaged COB to evaluate the treatment of a secondary pyrite concentrate using the COB technology for recovery of cobalt sulphate (along with copper and gold). The test work program is expected to conclude by the end of May.

Why is the investment in a pilot and then demonstration plant so important?

CEO: A key stepping-stone on our development path is to build a metallurgical testing centre in Broken Hill. This centre will scale from an initial Pilot Plant operation producing ~100-300 kilograms of cobalt sulphate from 90 tonnes of ore and we expect commissioning in late Q2 with first operations mid-year.

This facility will then be upgraded to a larger-scale fully integrated Demonstration Plant, producing 1-2 tonnes of cobalt sulphate, by year-end.

The Demonstration Plant is aiming to deliver multiple production samples to leading battery facilities across Asia, Europe and North America.

Global industry uptake of our product requires extensive acceptance testing so that our commercial product can qualify as a precursor feedstock from the outset of BHCP operations.

Potential commercial partners will be able to visit the project mine site as well as the Demonstration Plant in 2020, providing inspection of the entire production chain.

What do you mean by flexible production at BHCP?

CEO: In order to take advantage of prevailing cobalt market conditions, the BHCP has a flexible production strategy. By developing a process that produces a range of commercially saleable products, the project will be able to optimise its suite of products at any one time. In simple terms – Capture the maximum cobalt margin across the price cycle for our shareholders.

The BHCP refinery will therefore produce:

  • An intermediate Mixed Hydroxide Product (MHP) containing ~25% cobalt and ~2% nickel. The high cobalt to nickel ratio is unique and is likely to command a premium payable content sale price, for blending with typical nickel rich MHPs.
  • A final Cobalt Sulphate will be produced from further refining the MHP. The target product specification is a >20.5% cobalt content sulphate crystal, suitable for use in cathode precursor manufacture.

COB is involved in various Federal Government initiatives, from the FBI CRC and the CRC-P, can you summarise this involvement?

CEO: COB has recently joined the Future Battery Industries Cooperative Research Centre (FBI CRC) (http://www.fbicrc.com.au/). The FBI CRC was granted A$25 million from the Australian Government and has received pledges from industry participants totalling A$100 million. COB will be taking an active role in the FBI CRC cathode precursor pilot plant, which is aiming to produce cathodes using Australian sourced raw materials (eg CoSO4.7H2O and NiSO4.6H2O)

COB has also been awarded A$2.4 million from the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) – Project Round 8 Funding from the Australian Government, for applied research and development of the processing of cobalt-pyrite orRead More – Source

Australia

Hexagon Energy Metals Ltds (ASX:HXG) partner in the commercialisation of the RapidSX rare earth element (REE) separation technology, Innovation Metals Corp, has entered into an agreement with Ucore Rare Metals Inc (CVE:UCU).

Ucore will assess RapidSXs potential utilisation for the separation of REEs into high-purity REE oxides (REOs) using concentrate material from Ucores flagship Bokan-Dotsan Ridge REE Project in Alaska, US.

Hexagons management team in North America and Australia was instrumental in bringing the parties together and advancing the first binding Technical Services Agreement (TSA) signed for test processing the material.

Hexagon managing director Mike Rosenstreich said: “Ucores interest in and commitment to evaluating RapidSX is significant; they are a REE industry stalwart in the USA with an advanced project with US$145 million in designated financing from the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA).

“Ucore plans to develop heavy and light REE downstream processing capabilities through its planned Alaska Strategic Metals Complex to produce separated high-purity REOs.”

Third-party validation of a unique technology

“Ucore brings a tremendous amount of third-party validation to RapidSX, underscoring Hexagons focus on the commercialisation of this important technology.

“Over the past several years, Ucore has evaluated a range of alternative REE-separation processes, resulting in the selection of solvent-extraction chemistry, which led to their interest in the proprietary RapidSX REE separation technology, offering significant CapEx and OpEx savings compared to current conventional SX-based commercial REE separation.

Read More – Source

Australia

Zelira Therapeutics Ltd (ASX:ZLD) (OTCQB:ZLDAF) has been granted a trading halt pending the release of interim results of its insomnia clinical trial.

Shares will remain halted until the earlier of either the release of relevant information or the commencement of trading on Wednesday 19 February 2020.

Trial treating 24 patients in Perth

The Zelira insomnia trial was designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a cannabinoid extract containing THC and CBD in patients with symptoms of clinically diagnosed chronic insomnia.

This trial is the first in the world to have a primary endpoint assessing the impact of a full-spectrum cannabis extract on sleep.

A randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, cross over study design was used to treat 24 patients with Zeliras proprietary insomnia formulation and a placebo formulation delivered sublinguallyRead More – Source

Australia

Resolute Mining Limited (ASX:RSG) has taken advantage of strength in the gold price to extend its US dollar dominated gold hedge position for the first half of 2021 – forward selling 30,000 ounces of gold at an average price of US$1,590 per ounce.

Managing director and CEO John Welborn said Resolute continued to successfully maximise operating cash flows through responsible hedging strategies.

He said: “Incremental expansion of our US dollar hedging position at levels which are significantly above our budgeted gold price, protects and supports Resolutes near-term cash flows.

“Resolutes hedging program has strong support from our syndicate banks as our modest hedge book protects the Companys balance sheet and supports our goldlinked revenues.

“With long mine lives and large gold inventories, Resolute remains strongly leveraged to future upside in the gold price.”

The hedging secures price certainty for a portion of the US dollar revenues generated from Resolutes African gold mines, the Syama Gold Mine in Mali and the Mako Gold Mine in Senegal.

Forward gold sales program

The sale will involve scheduled monthly deliveries of 5,000 ounces between January 2021 and JuneRead More – Source

Australia

Kingwest Resources Ltd (ASX:KWR) has updated the mineral resource estimate for the Pericles prospect at its Menzies Gold Project (MGP) in Western Australia.

The new estimate is 0.63 million tonnes at 1.8 g/t gold (indicated resource) and 0.78 million tonnes at 1.7 g/t (inferred resource) for a combined total of 1.4 million tonnes at 1.8 g/t (79,500 ounces).

This represents an 87% increase in contained gold metal over the previous estimate in March 2016, which the company attributes to significantly higher tonnages and contained gold ounces at lower grades.

“Impressive increase”

Kingwest chief executive officer Ed Turner said: “This is another great result with limited amount of drilling late in 2019 contributing to an impressive increase in the Pericles resource estimate. “Mineralisation remains open along strike and at depth and therefore further increases in the future are possible.”

Along with other resources at Yunndaga, Bellenger and Warrior, the new Pericles estimate brings the total near surface resources at MGP to 3.28 million tonnes at 2.0 g/t gold for 208,300 ounces.

Open pit potential

The Pericles resource is shallow, extending from the surface to 120 metres depth and has the potential Read More – Source

Australia

Oakdale Resources Ltd (ASX:OAR) is progressing the permitting process to commence drilling gold targets at the Lambarson Canyon Project in Nevada.

The targets at Lambarson Canyon were identified using induced polarisation (IP) survey results in conjunction with highly anomalous surface gold sample results.

Drilling is planned at Lambarson Canyon in the June quarter of 2020 once the permitting process is completed and weather permitting.

Oakdale is evaluating the Lambarson Canyon property using a porphyry or intrusion-related model.

The rig will be re-mobilised from Tonopah North where the second and final hole intersected gold but not enough to be deemed economic.

Lambarson Canyon now the major focus

Oakdales Nevada Technical Manager Geoff Balfe said: “At Tonopah North we have seen gold mineralisation associated with quartz veins in TND-02, as predicted, but we require stronger veining in order to have economic widths of mineralisation.

“The drill hole effectively tested the targRead More – Source

Australia

MMJ Group Holdings Ltd (ASX:MMJ) has this morning revealed a share purchase plan (SPP) to raise up to $5 million through the issue of shares priced at 11 cents.

Eligible shareholders on the register as of yesterday (5:00pm AWST Thursday 13 February) will be able to subscribe for up to $30,000 worth of new shares.

The funds raised will be primarily applied towards investment in existing and new cannabis and hemp businesses, operating expenses and general working capital.

Notably, the SPP offer price of 11 cents represents a 51% discount to MMJs net tangible asset (NTA) value per share post-tax as at 31 January 2020.

Funding to take advantage of growing market

MMJs chairman Peter Wall said: “The SPP is expected to improve MMJs position to take advantage of the growing global cannabis and hemp market, with a particular focus on listed and unlisted Canadian cannabis businesses.

“It also increases our flexibility to make follow-on investments in our current portfolio companies and to manage the timing of exits for some of our existing investments.

“We believe that a SPP is the fairest and most efficient means of raising equity, where our eligible shareholders will be offered the first opportunity to invest additional funds in the company at a discount to the current share price.

“On behalf of theRead More – Source