US junior secures $1M for superalloy project in southeast Nebraska
US miner NioCorp Developments (OTCMKTS:NIOBF)(TSX:NB) revealed Thursday is about to receive a $1 million-shot in the arm from an entity managed by The Lind Partners, a New York-based asset management firm.
The Colorado-based company, which expects to receive the funding on or around July 9, is in the midst of developing its huge Elk Creek superalloy project in southeast Nebraska, which some politicians believe it could produce American-made “super steels” for existing infrastructure projects across all 50 states.
All the metals NioCorp plans to mine at its Elk Creek project — niobium, scandium, and titanium — were included last month on the US government’s register of critical minerals.
According to the miner, the project is the only primary niobium deposit in the US, and the highest-grade, large-tonnage currently undeveloped in North America.
NioCorp has completed a positive feasibility study for the minerals used in super-alloys and said it obtained key US federal permits to build the $1 billion mine with a mine life of 32 years. The company also said 75% of Elk Creek’s primary product – ferroniobium – is already under contract over the first 10 years of production.
German industrial giant ThyssenKrupp is one of its early customers and NioCorp said the project is eligible for German Government loan guarantees.
Based on current forecasts, Niobium demand is going to surpass the supply capacity from the three existing producers — CBMM, Anglo American and IAMGOLD’s Niobec.