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American Battery is building a foundation to play the lithium long game

Snapshot

The company is pairing battery recycling with extraction and resource production in an ambitious bid to create a closed-loop set of solutions for the entire battery metal supply chain

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Quick facts: American Battery Metals Corporation

Price: 0.1753 USD

OTCQB:ABML
Market: OTCQB
Market Cap: $79.18 m
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  • Lithium-ion battery recycling plant opening this year
  • Also covers extraction and resource production
  • Extensive mineral resources in Nevada

What American Battery Metals does:

American Battery Metals Corporation (OTCMKTS:ABML), soon to be known as American Battery Technology Company, is an American-owned lithium-ion battery recycling technology and advanced extraction company with extensive mineral resources in Nevada.

The company is focused on its lithium-ion battery recycling and resource production projects in the state, with the goal of becoming a substantial domestic supplier of battery metals to the rapidly growing electric vehicle and battery storage markets.

American Battery puts a great emphasis on the first word in its name. It says it is eagerly willing to work with other companies mining for battery metals in Nevada and in North America because it understands the importance of the US breaking free of reliance on foreign sources of critical materials. It believes that working together with industry partners and competitors is good for the home team, so to speak, and good for the global market.

Doug Cole has led American Battery since 2017. He is a partner with Objective Equity LLC, a boutique investment bank focused on technology, data and mining, and in 2019 he was awarded the Patriot Award from the Nevada committee of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) and Secretary of Defense.

How is it doing:

On August 20, the company revealed it is adopting the name American Battery Technology Company to align with its new strategic vision, reflecting its focus on battery recycling and extraction.

CEO Doug Cole said: "We feel American Battery Technology Company better reflects our primary focus, mission and strategic vision. These past several months have been exciting as we have expanded our team and evolved from a battery metals company to a battery metals technology development company. Our new website tells our exciting story and shares our plans for the green energy revolution."

Earlier the same week, American Battery announced that it had finalized the initial equipment orders for its first lithium-ion battery metals recycling plant. The plant, located in Fernley, Nevada, takes in battery end-of-life materials and manufacturing waste, disassembles them and separates those feedstock materials into intermediate products.

In July, American Battery had entered into escrow to purchase roughly 12 and a 1/2 acres of industrial land for the recycling facility in Fernley. The land is in a Qualified Opportunity Zone (QOZ), which offers a tax incentive to encourage private investment of capital into projects, businesses and property development in northern Nevada.

The company recently held a groundbreaking ceremony, and CEO Doug Cole said the company is working with contractors to get the operation up and running. Once the plant is operational in the first quarter of 2021, the company anticipates that the construction financing will be refinanced with long-term project financing with a large-scale lending institution that may include Small Business Administration (SBA) loan guarantees. 

American Battery is also teaming up with San Francisco-based investment firm Just Business, which deploys capital for growth and works with companies committed to both profitability and tangible environmental and social impact.

On the management front, in September, the group appointed its chief technical officer Ryan Melsert to its board of directors. Melsert joined the company in September 2019 and helped it win the coveted Greentown Labs/BASF Circularity Challenge award for the company's first-of-kind lithium-ion battery recycling process.

Before joining American Battery Metals, Melsert was the research & development (R&D) manager for Tesla Inc’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) Gigafactory battery materials processing group.

Inflection points:

  • Getting the battery recycling plant up and running is crucial
  • Expects to process roughly 20,000 tons of feedstock each year, a huge chunk given just 90,000 tons of feedstock was recycled globally in 2018
  • Partnerships with other companies in Nevada and elsewhere in North America are on the horizon

What the boss says:

American Battery CEO Doug Cole has high hopes for the coming battery recycling plant: “When it's in full production, it's [going to be] a great thing for the state of Nevada and great for the US government," Cole said in a statement.

 “We're going to recycle lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles, consumer electronics and tools, scrap materials and manufacturing waste," he added. "This commercial pilot plant is scaled to process 20,000 metric tons at full production. It will serve as a template plant for additional recycling facilities that we will build in the future.”

Contact Andrew Kessel at [email protected] 

Follow him on Twitter @andrew_kessel

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