First Cobalt finishes refinery financing
$45M toward upgrade and expansion of battery-grade cobalt Metal Tech News - September 6, 2021
Last updated 9/6/2021 at 4:05am
First Cobalt Corp. Sept. 3 announced the completion of a US$45 million financing that will help fund the upgrade and expansion of its battery-grade cobalt sulfate refinery in Canada.
"With the completion of this financing, the First Cobalt project team can now accelerate long lead equipment orders for our Canadian battery materials refinery as we pursue our vision of becoming the most sustainable producer of battery materials," said Trent Mell, president and CEO of First Cobalt.
The US$45 million consists of a portion of private placement offerings to U.S. investors, accumulating US$37.5 million, with the remainder coming from an overnight-marketed public offering which involved the issuance of 38.15 million shares at C25 cents per share, amounting to C$9.5 million (US$7.5 million).
Expected to be completed by the end of 2022, the expanded and upgraded First Cobalt refinery in Ontario will be capable of producing 25,000 metric tons of battery-grade cobalt sulfate per year, which is more than 5% of current global cobalt production.
"Our immediate objective is to become the only producer of battery-grade cobalt in North America by Q4 2022," added Mell. "Thereafter, we intend to produce nickel, cobalt, lithium and other battery materials from recycled lithium-ion batteries."
Aiming for more than just a simple refinery, First Cobalt envisions a battery park built around the refinery that would offer environmental and efficiency advantages compared to those at the Harjavalta Industrial Eco-Park in Finland.
"Longer term, we are pursuing the creation of a battery park around our low-carbon hydrometallurgical refinery, which would include nickel sulfate production from primary feeds and lithium-ion battery precursor manufacturing," finished the First Cobalt CEO.
Furthermore, being accessible by road and rail, the future park will be a stone's throw from the famed Rust Belt region, or less than 500 miles north of the Great Lakes manufacturing towers such as Detroit and Buffalo, this globally significant refinery is in a prime location to deliver a metal critical to the future demand of electric vehicle lithium-ion batteries.
You can read more about First Cobalt's expectations for an industrial eco-park at First Cobalt battery park concept emerges in the July 14, 2021 edition of Metal Tech News.
First Cobalt intends to use the funding for expenses related to the expansion and recommissioning of its wholly-owned hydrometallurgical refinery in Ontario, including buildings, equipment, infrastructure, and other direct costs, as well as engineering and project management costs.