Thor Energy (ASX:THR) investee company EnviroCopper (ECL) has received an initial $900,000 investment from uranium and energy metal explorer Alligator Energy (ASX:AGE).
Alligator is expecting to claim a 7.8% stake in ECL through the initial investment, with an exclusive option to make further staged strategic investments to increase its ownership in ECL to 50.1%.
Thor Energy currently holds a 30% equity interest in ECL.
The investment from Alligator comes as ECL is advancing in-situ recovery (ISR) trials for environmentally sustainable copper extraction at its flagship Kapunda Copper Project.
The work at Kapunda is being undertaken to help meet copper demand for the ‘green’ energy transition.
Thor states a technical advisory committee will be formed, enabling Alligator to assist ECL with planned in-situ trial work across all projects and an ability to jointly apply any intellectual property that is developed.
BHP Ltd (formerly Oz Minerals) continues to fund part of ECL’s field investigations, including a site environmental lixiviant trial (SELT) of copper ISR at Kapunda.
Thor Energy Managing Director (MD) Nicole Galloway Warland says the company is confident Alligator will provide ECL with financial resources to advance Alford West and key technical support during the resource definition and approvals process.
Meanwhile, Alligator Energy Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Greg Hall says the investment follows the evaluation of options for potential energy minerals opportunities both within its internal portfolio and externally.
“Alligator has been evaluating options for potential energy minerals opportunities both within its existing portfolio (exploration) and externally, as a potential second future business stream along with its significant uranium portfolio.
The investment into EnviroCopper Ltd supports this, along with significant synergies to our existing in-house ISR uranium expertise.
It provides the opportunity for AGE to be invested in and involved in future copper demand for the green energy transition through the significant oxide copper resources in these projects, and with wider potential within South Australia and Australia.”
“The investment into EnviroCopper Ltd provides the opportunity for AGE to be invested in and involved in future copper demand for the green energy transition through the significant oxide copper resources in these projects, and with wider potential within South Australia and Australia”
EnviroCopper MD Leon Faulkner adds the investment from Alligator supports the company’s growth in smarter, lower impact, environmentally and therefore socially acceptable exploration and mining developments.
Meanwhile, Thor announces ECL has signed an agreement with Andromeda Metals (ASX:ADN) to acquire exploration licence 5984 on the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia.
The licence holds the Alford West Joint Venture (JV) (ISR JV) and other ISR amenable targets.
The company reports key terms of the agreement include ECL gaining 100% ownership of Exploration Licence 5984.
However, a proposed split of the licence could see a new tenement area, consisting of the Alford, Moonta, and a portion of the tenement area, being retained by Andromeda.
According to Thor, in consideration for the Andromeda sale of the tenement and assisting with the split and renewal of the 2 new tenements, ECL will issue up to 203,008 fully paid ordinary shares to Andromeda and/or its nominee.
Other key terms of the transaction include ECL making a cash payment of $50,000 to Andromeda and Andromeda receiving a deferred consideration as a 10% share of any successful mining operations on the Alford West Project area (not exceeding $15 million) and Moonta Project area (not exceeding $15 million).
Upon the completion of a SELT, Andromeda is expected to be issued a further 2.5% of ECL capitalisation (101,504 shares).
Thor notes once a mining lease is granted, Andromeda will receive a further cash payment of $150,000 with royalty payments from operating cashflow.
However, Thor states the initial 5% payment to Andromeda, in conjunction with the Alligator investment, will dilute the company’s holding in ECL to 26.5%.
Warland says the consolidation of the exploration licence allows ECL to pursue in-situ recovery copper investigations while considering new discoveries across the tenement.
“As the Alford Copper Belt extends through both Thor’s Alford East project and the Alford West area, all investigative activities are a positive advancement to the In-Situ Recovery assessment of the area.”
Thor Energy is a uranium and energy metals-focused company with several ‘highly prospective’ projects in Australia and the US.
Alligator Energy is an Australian developer and explorer focused on uranium and energy-related metals.
Write to Adam Drought at Mining.com.au
Images: Thor Energy