Kodal Minerals, the mineral development and exploration company focused on the Bougouni Lithium Project, announces to shareholders today its unaudited interim results for the six months ended 30 September 2018.
- Significant progress made towards delivering maiden lithium production at flagship Bougouni Lithium Project in southern Mali ("Bougouni");
- Publication of Maiden Mineral Resource, placing Bougouni in the top 15 lithium projects globally with substantial exploration upside remaining;
- Potential for low cost production demonstrated by initial processing review - estimated production cost of US$400 per tonne of spodumene concentrate which compares to a current market selling price of between US$800 and US$900 per tonne;
- Appointment of experienced Project Manager to drive development at Bougouni with initial production targeted in 2020;
- Additional upside potential through exposure to gold projects being advanced through a joint venture with Resolute Mining Limited;
- Cash balance of £2,375,000 as at 30 September 2018 (£4,093,000 at 30 September 2017) and current cash balance of £1,706,000; and
- Loss for the 6-month period to 30 September 2018 of £343,000 (£529,000 for the 6 months to 30 September 2017)
Bernard Aylward, CEO of Kodal Minerals, said: "2018 has been a year of intense activity and delivery as we move closer to becoming West Africa's newest lithium producer. Since acquiring our Bougouni Lithium Project in late 2016, the Board and operational team have implemented an ambitious development strategy aimed at delivering a high quality, low capex and low opex lithium mine in as short a timeframe as practicable. To this end, 2018 has culminated in the achievement of several key milestones which have added tangible value to our asset, including declaring our maiden JORC-compliant Resource of 17.3 Mt at 1.2% Li2O, and propelling it closer to a decision to mine in 2019."
"Our work on site has resulted in the identification of three initial priority targets, Sogola-Baoule, Ngoualana and Boumou, and a further five earlier stage exploration prospects. However, we believe that this is just the beginning for Bougouni, with all indications pointing to considerable additional upside through further exploration across our extensive 450km2 project area. We are following a clear strategy that focuses on establishing a profitable mining operation as soon as practicable and to achieve this we have adopted a parallel exploration and development approach aimed at achieving lithium concentrate production in the near term."
"Our work to date has highlighted that the Bougouni project has sufficient size and scale to produce attractive returns for investors with our Maiden Resource and associated initial engineering studies, both published in September 2018, pointing to a minimum 10-year mine life. Of equal importance, with this quantum in mind and with a relatively simple mining and processing route identified, it is expected that capital required to construct a mining and processing operation will be modest compared to some of our lithium peers and that our proposed plant is well understood and amenable to rapid construction.
"I look forward to providing updates throughout 2019 as we move through our feasibility phase and into the planning and construction stages."
We have made excellent progress throughout recent months towards the delivery of our first mining operation at the Bougouni Lithium Project.
A key point of difference for Kodal Minerals compared to other lithium juniors, remains our strategic investor and offtake partner, Suay Chin International Pte ("Suay Chin"), a Singapore-based lithium and chemical trader. Since initially participating in a private placing in March 2017, Suay Chin has consistently supported our development initiatives - both financially and also operationally through its provision and facilitation of metallurgical test work by the Shandong Ruifu Lithium Co Ltd in China. We are extremely grateful to Suay Chin for their backing and look forward to continuing a long and mutually beneficial relationship as we work to de-risk further both the operational and corporate aspects of Bougouni and gear up to maiden production.
Finally, I would like to comment on our strong technical and corporate team that has been instrumental in the advancement of our project and most recently, we were delighted to welcome Steve Zaninovich as the Project Manager of Bougouni. Steve is a highly accomplished senior executive in the resources sector with more than 25 years' experience in project management encompassing all stages of mine development. In particular, his recent experience of guiding a lithium mine into production is extremely relevant for Kodal Minerals and his appointment demonstrates our commitment to delivering a lithium mine in as short a timeframe as possible.
Steve joins our operational team that includes our Mali Exploration Manager George Michaelides and our Mali Country Manager Mohamed Niare. We have now assembled a dynamic and highly experienced team which is capable of getting Bougouni through the feasibility and permitting phases during 2019 and preparing for development to commence.
Our strategy is designed to deliver maximum value for shareholders within a practical time horizon. The Kodal Minerals team is focused on delivering on this objective by rapidly progressing the execution phase of our Bougouni project in order to become a significant new West African focused lithium producer.
The Group has recorded a loss for the 6-month period to 30 September 2018 of £343,000 compared to £529,000 for the 6 months to 30 September 2017 and £857,000 for the year to 31 March 2018.
Cash balances as at 30 September 2018 were £2,375,000 compared to £4,093,000 at 30 September 2017 and £3,123,549 at 31 March 2018. Current cash as 13 December 2018 is £1,706,000.
For further information, please visit www.kodalminerals.com