Alkemy Capital Investments plc (ALK: LSE) (JV2:FRA) is pleased to provide an update on the supply of feedstock and the sale of lithium products from its proposed facilities at the Teesside Freeport, UK and Port Hedland, Western Australia.
· Following extensive technical and commercial due diligence, Tees Valley Lithium has been shortlisted by a major automotive OEM as the preferred European lithium refiner for a portion of its lithium supply chain
· The due diligence focussed on Tees Valley Lithium’s ability to import a lithium sulphate from its Port Hedland facility in Western Australia and the conversion into battery grade lithium hydroxide or carbonate at an internationally competitive price
· Discussions are also advancing well with third parties, including other automotive OEMs, for access to Tees Valley Lithium’s multi-train facilities using either an intermediate lithium sulphate produced at Port Hedland in Australia, or lithium sulphate produced elsewhere for refining into battery grade lithium products to access international markets via the Teesside Freeport
· Discussions are ongoing with two major trading groups to supply technical grade carbonate from South America and elsewhere to feed directly one of the trains at Tees Valley Lithium’s Wilton refinery to produce battery grade lithium products on a toll treatment basis.
Strong interest in Alkemy’s lithium refining strategy
The high level of interest in Alkemy’s projects in the UK and Australia highlights the need for lithium refining solutions for both European and global markets.
Alkemy’s two stage, multiple-train refinery design is able to accommodate different feedstock sources on a train-by-train basis, thereby opening up various feedstock, partnership and funding options.
Continued upstream investment by automotive OEMs
Recently announced transactions highlight the movement upstream by OEMs in order to secure raw material supplies for their future battery demands. These investments, and the number of lithium mining projects in development, are expected to increase the supply of raw materials for the battery transition.
The growing volume of lithium concentrates produced will require additional refining capacity to produce the high purity materials required by cathode manufacturers.
Despite parallel midstream investments by OEMs, this mid-stream refining capacity continues to be a potential bottleneck for the global lithium supply chain.
Alkemy shortlisted as preferred lithium refinery for major OEM
TVL is in discussions with several OEMs, encompassing proposals ranging from sourcing of raw materials and refining of those materials to lithium hydroxide, to toll treatment of lithium raw materials acquired or to be acquired by the OEMs.
Alkemy is pleased to report that following a detailed review of its proposed Boodarie and Wilton refineries by a global automotive OEM, Alkemy has been shortlisted as a favoured refining partner for lithium hydroxide and carbonate.
Being shortlisted by major industrial players validates Alkemy’s two-stage processing strategy, the engineering studies conducted to date, and our team’s execution capability. Alkemy is continuing to work with these OEMs to satisfy their requirements with a view to concluding legally binding agreements as soon as possible.
OEMs have also confirmed the ability to benefit from provisions of the US-Australia Climate, Critical Minerals, and Clean Energy Transformation Compact and the European Critical Minerals Act and Batteries Regulations.
Feedstock, offtake and partnership discussions progressing well
Alkemy continues in advanced discussions with a number of potential key feedstock suppliers, including several industry-leading lithium miners, well known automakers, global commodity trading houses and battery recyclers.
In the longer term, recycling of end-of-life batteries is expected to provide a significant supply of lithium materials, albeit requiring separation and refining for production of new batteries. TVL’s process has been designed specifically to allow for reprocessing of recycled material, and in due course, the company expects an increasing proportion of this feedstock to supply its Wilton refinery.
Alkemy is also advancing discussions with several other potential customers for its lithium hydroxide, including major European gigafactories and chemicals companies and expects significant offtake and/or partnership deals to be entered into in due course.
These customers are increasingly focussed on price, transparency and low embedded carbon, when sourcing high grade lithium products and have indicated their desire to partner with Alkemy due to our market leading credentials in these areas.
Sam Quinn, Director of Alkemy, commented:
“We are continuing discussions for the refining of lithium raw materials with several key globally significant feedstock suppliers and end customers, and we are delighted at being shortlisted as a favoured refining partner by a global automotive OEM.
The support received from third parties including major OEMs provides further validation of our proposed lithium refining strategy. The rapid completion of due diligence to the satisfaction of certain OEMs is testament to the quality of the work undertaken by our commercial and technical teams.
Our focus remains on supporting our potential partners’ lithium strategies and concluding commercial negotiations. We look forward to updating the market in due course as these arrangements become binding.”
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