Rare Earth Minerals (LSE: REM) has been one of the AIM success stories of 2014, rising by 145% so far this year.
The firm, known as REM, is backed by serial AIM entrepreneur David Lenigas, and is focused on finding rare earth elements — principally lithium.
The big deal for REM is its substantial stake in the Sonora Lithium Project in Mexico, but the firm is also active elsewhere, and has updated the market with news from two of its other projects — which could be significant long-term prospects — this week.
Gold in Greenland
REM owns a number of mining licences in Greenland, and the firm announced yesterday that early-stage exploration activities had resulted in the firm finding samples containing gold, silver, zinc and manganese, as well as traces of the rare earth elements Cerium and Niobium.
The firm has sent samples away for their rare earth element content to be analysed in more depth, but REM chief executive Kiran Morzaria believes says that the firm’s leases “in a previously underexplored and very expansive unit” could result in the development of “an organically grown project”.
Lithium in Nevada
REM also announced this week that it had increased its stake in the Western Lithium USA Corporation (WLC), owner of the Kings Valley Lithium Deposit in Nevada, from 2.29% to 3.02%.
The news came after WLC confirmed it had begun pilot production trials in Germany and had decided to add a lithium hydroxide circuit to its planned lithium carbonate production facilities, in order to serve the market for high-end lithium-ion batteries — such as those required for the growing electric car market.
According to David Lenigas, REM’s chairman, the addition of lithium hydroxide capacity is significant:
“Lithium hydroxide is fast becoming important for lithium-ion battery manufacturers due to batteries made from this compound having longer life cycles, better power densities and enhanced safety features.”
What’s next for REM?
The next major news is likely to come from Bacanora Minerals.
The UK-listed firm is currently planning a new drilling programme in Mexico, which could include the delineation of new lithium resources in the Megalit holdings, which are adjacent to Sonora, and in which REM also has an interest.
REM’s development is a fast-moving story that needs close attention. Frankly, it’s high risk and should probably only form a small part of your portfolio if you’re tempted, in case things don’t go to plan.
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Roland does not own shares in any company mentioned.