Lithium developer Sayona Mining has unveiled an institutional placement of around $134.6m (A$190m) to finance the recommencement of North American Lithium (NAL) operations in Québec, Canada.
As part of the single‐tranche placement, Sayona will issue around one billion of new ordinary shares, each at A$0.18, to each participating global institutional, professional and sophisticated investors.
Sayona said in a statement: “The placement has provided Sayona with considerable balance sheet strength as the company rapidly develops its leading lithium resource base in North America, amid escalating demand from the electric vehicle and clean energy revolution.”
The lithium miner plans to use A$100m of the total raised capital to restart spodumene concentrate production at the NAL operation, which is expected to help address the growing demand for battery metals produced in North America.
Sayona will also use A$35m for the development of the Authier project, A$25m towards the Moblan evaluation and feasibility study update, A$15m to fund exploration and project evaluation, and A$15m for working capital and offer costs.
In accordance with the recently completed prefeasibility study, the NAL operation has the potential to deliver approximately 168,000tpa of 6% spodumene concentrate during its mine life of 27 years.
Sayona owns a 75% stake in the NAL project, which is scheduled to restart in Q1 2023 while Piedmont Lithium owns the remaining 25%.
In addition, the two partners are evaluating the viability of developing a lithium hydroxide or carbonate plant at NAL.
Sayona managing director Brett Lynch said: “This placement is a major vote of confidence in our ability to transform NAL into a sustainable and profitable producer of key battery metals.”
The NAL mine, which reached commercial production in early 2018, had suspended production in 2019 due to a drop in the prices of lithium products and spodumene concentrate.