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Mar 8, 2018 6:10 AM ET

Graphite Demand on the Rise Thanks to Lithium-Ion Batteries

Disclosure NewswireTM

iCrowdNewswire - Mar 8, 2018

NEW YORK,  —

 

According to a research provided by Markets and Markets, the graphite market is expected to be worth $29.05 billion at a CAGR of 5.2 percent until 2022. Graphite is a widely used resource in the aerospace and glass/ceramic industry, but the biggest driver is the growing demand for lithium-ion batteries. The use of graphite in batteries has been increasing in the last 30 years and has become a major component in rechargeable batteries, which are widely used today. Lithium-ion batteries are mainly used in storage devices, consumer electronics, and electric vehicles. Graphite Energy Corp. (OTC: GRXXF), Millennial Lithium Corp. (OTC: MLNLF), FMC Corporation (NYSE: FMC), Mason Graphite Inc. (OTC: MGPHF), Northern Graphite Corporation (OTC: NGPHF)

The energy storage segment is a crucial segment of this market. According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), the global energy storage market will double six times between 2016 and 2030, rising to a total of 125 gigawatts/305 gigawatt-hours. This is a similar trajectory to the remarkable expansion that the solar industry went through from 2000 to 2015. Similarly to solar energy, the increasing demand for lithium-ion batteries is partially due to falling costs. Technological advancements continue to help reduce costs and increase power output. IHS Markit Ltd. indicated in a report that the growth of energy storage is being driven by rapidly falling lithium-ion module prices, which have fallen 70% since 2012 and will fall below $200/kWh by 2019.

Graphite Energy Corp. (OTC: GRXXF) also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the Ticker ‘GRE’. On February 26th the company announced that it, “has signed a drilling contract with George Downing Estate Drilling Ltd. of Abitibi, Quebec, to start drilling at its Lac Aux Bouleaux Graphite Property (the “LAB Property”) on or about March 10, 2018. The drilling program is a follow-up to the promising results from the Company’s recently completed exploration work which confirmed the presence of high grade large flake graphite in the range of 2.20% to 22.30% graphite carbon (Cg) in selected grab samples (see January 15, 2018, news release). In addition to other geophysical targets, drilling will be focused around the old graphite pit area which was the centre of historical exploration work in the late 1950s and early 1980s. The Company will provide a drilling program update as soon as logistical arrangements are complete.

The technical information contained in this news release has been reviewed and approved by Afzaal Pirzada, P.Geo., a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, of Geomap Exploration Inc. Mr. Pirzada is a member of Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia and holds a restricted permit for the Order of Geologists of Quebec(OGQ). He also serves as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company.”

Millennial Lithium Corp. (OTCQB: MLNLF) is an emerging exploration and development company focused on world class lithium assets in Argentina. On January 31, 2018, the company announced results of its Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) for the production of lithium carbonate from its Pastos Grandes Project in the province of Salta, Argentina. The PEA was prepared by WorleyParsons Chile S.A. (“WP”), a leading integrated independent engineering services firm with extensive experience in the design and construction of lithium brine projects in Argentina and Chile.  All figures are quoted in U.S. dollars. The strong lithium mineral resource delineated at the Pastos Grandes Project and the PEA results form the basis for mine development.  The resource estimate, completed by Montgomery and Associates Chile, includes 2,131,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate (“Li2CO3”) equivalent in the Measured and Indicated Resource categories, with an additional 878,000 tonnes of Li2CO3 in the Inferred Resource category

FMC Corporation (NYSE: FMC) operates its businesses in two segments: FMC Agricultural Solutions and FMC Lithium. On February 12, 2018, the company reported fourth quarter and full-year 2017 results. For the year, FMC reported revenue of approximately $2.9 billion, an increase of 13 percent compared to 2016. On a GAAP basis, the company reported earnings of $536 million, or $3.99 per diluted share. Full-year adjusted earnings were $2.71per diluted share, an increase of 41 percent compared to the prior year. FMC Lithium reported fourth quarter segment revenue of $113 million, an increase of 60 percent versus the prior-year quarter. Segment earnings more than doubled year-over-year to $44 millionin the quarter. Higher volume from FMC’s new hydroxide operations in China and higher year-over-year prices were the main contributors to growth. The outlook for Lithium segment revenue for the full year of 2018 is in the range of $420 million to $460 million, an increase of 27 percent at the mid-point compared to 2017, while the outlook for full-year segment EBITDA is in the range of $180 million to $200 million.

Mason Graphite Inc. (OTCQX: MGPHF) is a Canadian mining and mineral processing company focused on the development of what management believes to be one of the highest grade graphite deposits known in the world. The 100% owned Lac Guéret graphite project is located in northeastern Québec, Canada. The Company is led by a highly experienced graphite team led by Benoit Gascon, CA CMA, who has held 20 years of executive positions at Timcal (later became Imerys Graphite and Carbon), including over 6 years as CEO. Imerys Graphite and Carbon is the largest graphite supplier in the world. The company is also advancing a detailed study for large scale production of value-added graphite products, which was initiated in 2015. The Lac Guéret project consists of 215 claims covering 11,630 ha (116 km2) and is easily accessible year-round by main logging roads via highway 389.

Northern Graphite Corporation (OTCQX: NGPHF) is a Canadian development company with a 100% interest in the Bissett Creek graphite deposit, which is located in southeastern Canada and relatively close to all required infrastructure. Recently, the company provided updated financial metrics for the Preliminary Economic Assessment on the Company’s 100% owned Bissett Creek graphite project. The Company’s PEA envisions developing the Project in two phases. Phase 1 will consist of building a mine and plant capable of producing over 20,000 tonnes of graphite concentrate per annum at an initial capital cost of CDN$101.5 million (US$81.2 million at current exchange rates). A full Feasibility Study was filed by the Company with respect to the Phase 1 development. The PEA, which was subsequently filed in late 2013, includes a second phase which involves doubling the plant throughput after three years of operation and increasing production to an average of 42,000tpy over the succeeding 10 years in order to meet the expected future growth in graphite demand.

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