Canadian mineral resource development company Giyani Metals (Giyani) has secured financing of $16m (C$21.64m) from the IDC to fund the development of the K.Hill manganese project in Botswana.

The financing has been secured by Giyani and its wholly owned subsidiaries via two long-term convertible loan facilities ($12.5m and $3.5m) with the IDC.

Giyani said the financing is the cornerstone of a $26m funding package, which will be used to move the K.Hill mine closer to a final investment decision (FID).

The company also plans to use the proceeds from the latest funding package to operate its demonstration plant and so undertake an optimised feasibility study for the K.Hill project.

Being developed in Johannesburg, South Africa, the demonstration plant will be equipped to produce manganese suitable for batteries.

Giyani president and CEO Danny Keating said: “The investment provides the majority of the financing that Giyani requires to de-risk the project through to FID and introduces a partner with a vision and ambition to be involved in the development and capital funding of the project.

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“We look forward to commencing operations at the Demonstration Plant to enable the distribution of samples to potential customers as we finalise our sales and off-taker strategy for the commercial scale plant to be built in Botswana.”

Giyani plans to secure the remaining $10m of funding package from a strategic investor, which signed a non-binding term sheet.

IDC chief operations officer Joanne Bate said: “We are excited by the potential of Giyani and see K.Hill as an important step in IDC’s strategy to help initiate the development of a battery minerals industry in southern Africa.”

Located within a 438km² licence area that is part of the Giyani project area, the K.Hill project produces high-purity manganese sulphate monohydrate.