Piedmont Lithium to raise $20m for US lithium project

Lithium developer Piedmont Lithium Limited will raise A$29-million ($29-million) to continue the development of its namesake lithium project, in North Carolina, Mining Weekly reports.

The company on Thursday said that it had received commitments for a US public offering of 1.8-million of its American Depositary Shares (ADSes), each representing 100 of its ordinary shares, at an issue price if $6.30 per ADS, to raise a gross $11.3-million.

Due to the strong investor demand, the underwriters have exercised their option to purchase an additional 265 000 ADSes to cover over-allotments, also at an issue price of $6.30 each, to raise an additional $1.7-million.

Piedmont told shareholders that the company has also received commitments from existing non-US institutional and sophisticated shareholders and directors for a further 120-million fully paid ordinary shares, at an issue price of 9c each, to raise a further A$10.8-million.

The private placement will be subject to shareholder approval at Piedmont’s annual general meeting, scheduled for late July.

The public offering is expected to close on June 11, and the ADSes will be issued under Piedmont’s existing placement capacity. The private placement, subject to shareholder approval, will be completed in late July.

Piedmont told shareholders that proceeds from both the public offering and the private placement will be used to continue the development work at the Piedmont lithium project, including a definitive feasibility study, test work, permitting and ongoing land consolidation, as well as for general corporate purposes.

An initial scoping study into the mine and concentrator project estimated that it would require a capital investment of $168-million to sustain an annual production rate of 22 700 t/y of lithium hydroxide over a mine life of 25 years.

Piedmont has also undertaken a prefeasibility study into a proposed lithium hydroxide chemicals plant in Kings Mountain, in North Carolina, proving the optionality of a standalone merchant chemicals plant that would convert purchased spodumene concentrate.

The study into the potential merchant project estimated that some 22 720 t/y of lithium hydroxide could be produced over a project life of 25 years, at an average cost of production of $6 689/t.

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