US-based former rare earths producer
Molycorp Inc., which is currently attempting
to exit bankruptcy proceedings, has seen no bidders come
forward for the business as an entire company, meaning that the
firm will likely see its assets sold off in chunks, according
Quoting sources familiar with the matter,
Bloomberg said that offers are only being made by
potential buyers for the company’s overseas
businesses, and not its Mountain Pass mine and processing
facility in California.
Molycorp, which has total debts of around
$1.9bn, applied for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in
Delaware in July and put its Mountain Pass site into care and
maintenance later in October.
As part of the bankruptcy process,
Molycorp and its creditors have put forward plans to potential
buyers for either an entire company sale, in which the
purchaser would acquire all arms of the company, or,
alternatively, an asset strip model, in which business
divisions are sold off to the highest bidders.
In Shanghai, China, Ossen
Innovation Co. Ltd posted a 7.6% rise in margins to
$30m for Q3 2015, compared to the equivalent period in
The coatings company, which uses zinc and
rare earths to surface pre-stressed steel materials for bridges
and other infrastructure projects, also recorded net income
growth of 601% year-on-year (y-o-y), to $3.3m.
"While our revenues grew by 7.6% y-o-y,
gross margin, operating margin and net earnings all reached the
highest levels in four years as a result of low material costs
and strong sales volume across all major product categories
that more than offset decline in average selling prices," Liang
Tang, Ossen Innovations’ chairman said.
Germany-based Tantalus Rare Earths
AG has signed a sale and purchase agreement with
Singapore-headquartered Apphia Minerals SOF PTE
Ltd, under which it will sell 60% of its shares in
Tantalum Holding Mauritius Ltd.
Tantalum Holding owns 100% of the shares
in Tantalum Rare Earth Malagasy SARL, which in
turn holds a total of 300km2 concession areas in
Madagascar, divided into 768 individual blocks, forming the
basis of Tantalus’ TRE rare earths ionic clay
Apphia will pay Tantalus €3.7m
($4.08m*) for the stake, after which the company will withdraw
its application for insolvency.
Subject to a number of operative
milestones being reached, Apphia has also elected to procure
not less than €8m in debt funding for the TRE project.
TSX-V-listed Ucore Rare Metals
Inc. has entered an agreement with a foreign
investment fund for total proceeds of $5m in consideration for
a royalty or profit share on the sale of products and services
related to the processing of rare earths using the
company’s SuperLig-branded molecular recognition
The first payment of $2.5m is due on 30
April 2016, and the investment may be increased by up to $1m in
exchange for a larger royalty.
MRT is a development-stage separation
technology. While used successfully in other industries, the
process, which uses customisable ligand molecules to scavenge
for specific molecules, is new to the rare earths processing
"We're pleased to announce the agreement
for yet another significant royalty financing", Jim McKenzie,
Ucore’s CEO, said. "The obtainment of repeated
financings during this challenging time in the resource sector
is an exceptional achievement. We believe this shows the
potential for MRT as a revenue maker in both pro-cyclical and
Vancouver, British Columbia-based
Canada Rare Earth Corp. has agreed to receive
a promissory note due on 30 November 2018 for $1.2m in exchange
for an equity investment in a privately held company with
property in the West Indies.
"The promissory note proceeds, once
collected, will provide additional financial resources for our
rare earth initiatives in line with our corporate strategy,"
Tracy Moore, Canada Rare Earth’s CEO, said.
"We continue to consider the West Indies
as a suitable location for a rare earth processing facility
and, in this regard, we are considering two other sites in the
Also based in Vancouver, Search
Minerals Inc. has entered a debt settlement agreement
with multiple creditors which will see it issue an aggregate of
617,143 shares at a deemed price of Canadian dollar (C$)
The total debt paid back by the company in
the share agreement amounts to C$62,665, of which C$25,000 is
payable to the NunatuKavut Community Council. The remaining
$37,665 is required by a rental agreement between the company
and its former landlord for a property in Port Hope Simpson,
Newfoundland and Labrador.
"We are very appreciative of the continued
support by the NunatuKavut Community Council for the
development of the Foxtrot project," Greg Andrews,
Search’s CEO, said.
Search said that it chose to pay the debt
with shares in order to preserve its remaining cash for
operations and the settlement of other obligations.
TSX-V-listed Medallion Resources
Ltd has received positive feedback from processing
companies regarding its mixed rare earth concentrate product
"Based on those responses, it is clear
that this concentrate product, once capable of being produced
in commercial quantities, is suitable for input into standard
commercial rare earth refineries or separation plants,"
"This is a welcome and expected response
as well as validation of our approach. Rare earth processing
can be technically challenging, so we have taken a
straightforward approach to get to production. Our strategy is
to purchase by product monazite sand. This will serve as a
high-grade feedstock for our planned commercial extraction
plant," Don Lay, Medallion’s CEO, added.
Australia-based Northern Minerals
Ltd has appointed Argonaut as its
financial advisor, in which capacity it will assist the company
in delivering "optimal short term and long term financing
outcomes" to take the Browns Range rare earths project into
"We acknowledge heavy rare earth prices,
including those for dysprosium are currently depressed, along
with the general commodity market," said Eddie Rigg, managing
director and head of corporate finance at Argonaut, said.
"Browns Range is regarded as one of the
world’s best undeveloped heavy rare earth ore
bodies. This coupled with Northern Minerals’
quality management team will ensure this project is financed in
the medium term as prices recover."
In the US, geologists with the US
Geological Survey (USGS) are finalising a work
programme consisting of exploration of Adirondack Mountains in
Upstate New York via low-level flights.
Anji Shah, the head of the USGS project,
told SF Gate that the area was identified as a
potential rare earths source in 2010. Extensive iron mining
occurred in the late 1800s and early 1900s, Shah said,
suggesting that rare earths could be locked up in tailings or
*Conversions made December