Commodities, Finance, Lithium, News

New lithium player comes to town

Develop mining

With a mining tycoon behind it, Develop Global has its paw prints over new commodities and domains within the Australian mining industry.

This includes Essential Metals – a sought-after lithium explorer that IGO made a play for earlier this year.

Backed by Mineral Resources’ Chris Ellison, 93 per cent of Essential Metals shareholders approved Develop’s takeover offer on Wednesday. The offer comprised one Develop share for every 6.18 Essential shares.

This was above the required threshold of 75 per cent of all votes cast. More than 50 per cent of members present and voting had to approve the offer, with 78 per cent of shareholders in the room giving the green light.

There are a few more conditions that need to be met before the takeover is actioned, including approval from the Federal Court of Australia.

Nevertheless, the shareholder vote is not only a vote of confidence in Develop’s ability to bring Essential Metals’ Pioneer Dome lithium project into production but also represents where Ellison’s priorities lie.

Ellison owns 19.9 per cent of Essential shares and has demonstrated his desire to grow his lithium footprint beyond the MinRes stable.

This ambition might’ve been hastened by Gina Rinehart’s recent efforts to seemingly upend Albemarle’s recent takeover bid for Liontown Resources. In little more than a month, Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting had grown its Liontown shareholding to 19.9 per cent, which was enough to disinterest Albemarle.

Above all, it’s clear Australian mining magnates are jockeying for positions in the race for more lithium exposure.

And Develop chief Bill Beament is among the leading horses, given he is close to being the outright owner of Pioneer Dome to accompany his Woodlawn project – one of the most promising copper developments in the Australian mining industry.

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