The permanent magnet market — it was 160 thousand tonnes in 2018. Today, it’s closer towards two hundred thousand tonnes. That market is growing. Every single magnet that has to be made produces 15-30% waste by weight. That’s a lot of magnet to be recycled. We are starting with the first plant of approximately $10M ten million dollars in sales and growing to full capacity within the plant, then probably looking to add a second plant as soon as possible close to magnet manufacturers. Most of them are in Asia, but you’re seeing more and more interest of some of those manufacturers to come to Europe and North America. That magnet sector today is generating $1.2 billion dollars annually. It’s expected to grow to $1.8 billion dollars. That’s a lot of money and it’s a sector that we want to take a big chunk out of. We think we can generate a lot of revenues and that’s why we think it’s a very good opportunity to invest in GEOMEGA today.
Why are we doing all this? It’s the circular economy principle. Once we are doing this recycling, it closes the production cycle as Europe and North America are trying to do right now. I’ll finish by saying that rare earth prices are low, but that’s what drives demand and demand is positive for innovation and recycling. That’s where we are today in the rare earth cycle. Low capex, low opex, small footprint, clean process, and cash flow — these are the objectives of the company in the near future. Thank you very much.
Kiril Mugerman: We are recycling those magnets. When we receive them, what happens is that we crush them if we receive them as solids. Sometimes we receive them as powders already, which is crushed material. Then it goes into a reactor where a process happens. It’s a sequence of three reactors where basically a process goes from one to the next one to the next one and we get our final product. The closer it goes towards the end of the process, the more similar to a traditional process. The first stages are very different and innovative, and do not produce the same waste that are produced in traditional technologies today.
GéoMégA president and CEO Kiril Mugerman discusses the prospect of producing rare earth elements (REEs) in Canada for the magnet industry via clean mining and processing practices. This presentation was part of the 2018 Progressive Mine Forum in Toronto, presented by The Northern Miner and Canadian Mining Journal.