It is time for TNR Gold to tell its story and it started to make rounds before International Lithium IPO with Chinese Ganfeng Lithium as the strategic partner. Hopefully, company will be up to the races now in Lithium space and investors will take notice of its portfolio, management and partners.
Record date is still to be announced by the company and now in addition to TNR Gold shares all shareholders by the Record Date will be entitled to receive International Lithium units - 1 ILC unit for every 4 TNR Gold shares held. Each unit will consist of 1 ILC share and 1 ILC warrant for two years with 0.375 exercise price.
It can be the easy way to participate in the ILC IPO with the big Chinese boys by buying TNR Gold shares before the record date.
"TNR Gold has found a very aggressive and active strategic partner in Lithium space for its International Lithium IPO. After ten years in production of Lithium materials Ganfeng Lithium is moving into the Lithium Ion Batteries production as well. Now we can see how this Chinese company is building the hole in-house supply value chain for the Lithium Ion batteries. Company has just recently announced that it is taking the strategic stake in International Lithium IPO - spin out form TNR Gold and now we have this news about the Lithium Ion Battery company.
Company has access to the capital in China and Chinese State level plan for the Electric Cars will ensure strong growth in this sector. International Lithium should benefit now from the aggressive development program in order to supply Lithium for the Ganfeng production facilities."
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By Claire O’Connor ResourcexInvestor.com
“I commend the efforts of the entire team, from the driving forces who not only had a vision but the determination and ability to guide the plan, to the highly qualified technical professionals that took the plan and made it reality” states International Lithium Corp. President, Mike Sieb. “Today, I look at a company with an outstanding portfolio of projects, strong management ownership, robust financial support and the acknowledgement of valuation from a prominent lithium product manufacturer”.
Up until two years ago, the niche lithium market has gone largely unnoticed despite growing steadily at a CAGR of 6.5% over the last 20 years. With demand for LCE (Lithium Carbonate Equivalent) of 105,000 MT/year in 2011 and conservative projection of demand reaching 100,000 MT of lithium just for batteries in vehicles and an overall demand of over 300,000 MT LCE by 2025, the future for the specialty mineral appears promising. It’s should come as no surprise that smart investors and household names such as Toyota, Mitsubishi, Magna International, LG, and more have all staked their claims on various lithium brines in South America over the last 24 months.
With stable market price of LCE ranging from $4,500 - $6,000 a MT and major producers such as SQM reporting healthy margins, lithium extraction from salt lakes (brines) in Argentina and Chile appear to be a very lucrative business model especially given the prospects of lithium in coming years.
Spin Out of International Lithium Corp.
International Lithium Corp. (“ILC”) as of the writing of this article is a wholly owned subsidiary of TNR Gold Corp. (TSX-V: TNR) (the “Company”). Structured under a Plan of Arrangement, announced in April 2009, the objective is to spin-out TNR's rare metals property interests into a separate public company, ILC, to take advantage of the increased investor interest in the Lithium and Rare Metals sector as well as the significant potential valuation identification realized through the spin out. TNR is in the final stages of the spin-out process with the listing of ILC targeted for the near term.
ILC currently holds sixteen highly prospective projects in eight areas of the world known for lithium and rare metals, including the highly prospective Mariana lithium brine project in the mining friendly province of Salta, Argentina.
The Mariana Lithium Brine project is located in the famous South American ‘Lithium Belt’, an 800 by 300 km north-south strip centered on the junction of Argentina, Bolivia and Chile that is host to the vast majority of lithium resources, reserves and production in the world. Within which, the Mariana lithium brine salar (salt lake) ranks as one of the more prominent features.
Salars consist of layers of evaporite minerals and sediment containing minerals dissolved in brines such as lithium, boron and potassium that remain in solution and can be readily pumped to the surface for processing. Salars are host to some of the largest known lithium resources in the world and are a prime source of global lithium production. The advantage of lithium extraction from Salars versus other sources of lithium is the simplicity, rapidity and cost effectiveness of the development and production.
The Mariana project affords easy access year round by paved and dirt roads and an international Argentina-Chile railway located 20kms away will provide invaluable assistance in any potential future development of the project. The Mariana project consists of several contiguous claims with the Company holding an option to acquire a 100% interest, extending over 160 squared kilometres and strategically encompassing the entire salar.
This last fact is fairly unique in comparison to other Lithium explorers and developers in the area that share, sometimes piecemeal, multiple company claim holdings within one salar. The strategic advantage of the ability to pump unheeded from a single-owner lithium brine reservoir versus a scenario where multiple companies are competing and extracting from one brine resource (i.e. multiple straws in the same milkshake) is highly coveted. ILC has that advantage.
Initial sampling and hydrogeology studies have been completed on Mariana with significant lithium, boron, and potash levels reported in brines within the main body of the salar. Average grades from the most recent sampling program returned 440 mg/L lithium, 12,700 mg/L Potassium and 790 mg/L Boron. The lithium grade is comparable to initial results from other advancing projects and of special note the Potassium grades are the highest reported outside of the world class producing Atacama salar in Chile. The company has performed geological modeling which indicates a strong potential for higher grades within the target sub-surface brine pools.
ILC is planning an initial phase $1 million drill program subsequent to listing with the primary objective to isolate and geochemically characterize the subsurface brine across different zones within the salar basin. The intent is to utilize this drill program as a first step towards a resource classification of the brine.
International Lithium Corp.’s portfolio of projects and technical exploration team has caught the eye of an Asian-based strategic investor. Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd., a leading China-based multi-product lithium manufacturer, has committed to a strategic investment consisting of an initial 9.9-per-cent equity stake in ILC.
"The involvement of a strategic investor from the outset has been the goal that we have diligently worked towards since first announcing the spin-out of ILC" states Gary Schellenberg, CEO – TNR Gold Corp. "The strategic investor not only offers significant support in our future endeavors but attest to the credibility of ILC’s management, technical group and ultimately our projects’ potential."
ILC’s Other Projects
Nine lithium and rare metals projects, including Mariana, will be transferred to ILC upon completion of the proposed Plan of Arrangement. These 9 projects present ILC with a well balanced portfolio of lithium brine and hard rock rare metals projects to take advantage of the different synergies that both commodity types offer as a combined package.
In addition to the Mariana project, ILC has 3 lithium brine projects in Nevada (Fish Lake, Runway and Sarcobatus Flats) located in adjacent valleys to the Silver Peak operation in Clayton Valley, the sole lithium brine producer in North America which has been in operation since 1966. This past year, in an integrated regional lithium exploration approach using geochemical and basin modeling utilizing a detailed gravity survey, ILC identified multiple drill targets across all three properties. These targets exhibit analogous geological features which provided both a source and trap for the lithium brines currently extracted at Silver Peak. In the first half of 2011 ILC is planning to mobilize a drill to all three properties, target the lithium brine aquifers within the stratigraphy and test their viability.
“We consider the Nevada region as highly strategic, possessing excellent opportunity and significant potential, which may well become a centerpiece in ILC as the story unfolds” states ILC President Mike Sieb.
ILC’s property portfolio consists of a number of highly prospective rare metals’ hard-rock pegmatite projects that have been painstakingly selected by ILC’s technical experts under stringent guidelines. The key outstanding characteristics shared by all the rare metals’ projects are their underexplored nature, excellent accessibility, under-analyzed rare metals’ history, initial high confidence level that additional exploration will add project value and ultimately the potential to develop the projects to address the global technological growth in demand for the rare metals’ suite of elements.
Plan of Arrangement – ILC Financing
In order to complete the Plan of Arrangement, the company intends to raise a minimum of $2.5 million to provide International Lithium with sufficient operating and administration funds to satisfy Exchange requirements for listing. The proposed financing will entail the offering of a minimum of 10 million units in ILC priced at $0.25 per unit. Each unit consists of one common share and one common share purchase warrant. Each whole warrant entitles the holder to purchase one additional common share of ILC at a price of $0.375 for a period of two years from the date of closing (“Unit”).
TNR and Non-Executive Chairman Kirill Klip plan to participate in the financing. The closing of the financing, associated closing of the plan of arrangement and the listing of ILC is targeted for completion in the near term.
According to the Plan of Arrangement, for every four shares that a TNR shareholder maintains in their possession prior to and including the Record Date the TNR shareholder will be the beneficial recipient of one ILC Unit. This distribution of ILC Units provides an opportunity for an investor not participating in the financing to obtain an introductory position in ILC while retaining their position in TNR and the potential that holding represents.
TNR is a diversified international metals exploration company based on a tried and true ̔Lead Project Generatorʼ business model. This model depends on the continuous identification and acquisition of new prospective projects and selective advancement of existing core projects, all supported by effective property joint ventures to preserve Company resources. International Lithium Corp. is a result as well as an application of this business model.
TNR through its 18 year longstanding operations office in Argentina has facilitated the bulk of TNRʼs current properties with a primary gold and copper focus. Alternately, TNR has advanced an Alaskan gold project of note, the Shotgun property, reporting a non-NI 43-101 historical gold resource, located in the Kuskowim gold belt in southern Alaska, a district host to more than 40 million oz of Au.
Recently the Company has branched out by acquiring two underexplored rare earth element (“REE”) properties, the Big Beaverhouse comprising one of the largest carbonatite complexes in Ontario at 5 by 5 kms in scale and the Seabrook property hosting one of the most southern carbonatite complexes in Ontario.
ILC and TNR Management
ILC and TNR boast a highly experienced and varied management team. Standing as CEO is Gary Schellenberg, B.Sc. (Geology). Mr. Schellenberg has been managing and financing public and private resource based companies for 20 years with several successful ventures including Winspear Resources which was purchased by De Beers in 2001 at over $300 million. He brings a wealth of experience to his role as steward for both enterprises.
Chief Operating Officer is Michael Sieb, B.Sc., MBA, who brings 22 years of strong corporate growth and project management experience in international mining and exploration. Prior to joining TNR, he was president of Brilliant Mining Ltd. which was named to the TSX50 "Top 10 Mining Companies on the TSX: V" for two consecutive years during his tenure. Mr. Sieb is recognized as a committed executive with an exceptional array of skills essential for operating and developing a premier mining company. Michael will be assuming the primary role of President of International Lithium Corp. upon listing.
Non-Executive Chairman, Kirill Klip, is also 100% behind the company and proves it with money-on-the-line by holding a significant share position in the company (over 20% of outstanding shares) that demonstrates his confidence in not only TNR Gold and ILC’s projects but their management team. From his previous track records of managing billion dollar businesses and successful ventures spanning telecommunications, transportations and other resource companies, Mr. Klip is known to select companies that deliver superior long term value.
Amongst the other members of the board are Paul Chung, B. Sc. (Geology) MBA, Jerry Bella (CGA), Roberto Lara, John Harrop, P. Geo., Jerry Huang MBA, Thomas Currin and Dr. Frederick W. Breaks.
Hitting The Ground Running
The lithium belt of Bolivia, Chile and Argentina produces over 70% of the world’s lithium. ILC is advancing one of the primary projects in this region, just below SQM’s (NYSE: SQM) Atacama salar, the largest and unquestionably best source of lithium brine in the world. Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd, a professional producer of lithium products, has recently reported $6.3-million net income from total revenues of $54-million (U.S.) in 2010 and currently has a market capitalization of approximately $680-million (U.S.). Now, they want a piece of ILC. With a 9.9% strategic end user partner from Asia before IPO, the significant current and future project development assistance capability that Ganfeng’s involvement will bring to ILC and TNR’s 30% holding of ILC at listing, it’s safe to say that International Lithium Corp. is a company born to hit the ground running.
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