Altona Rare Earths shares start trading in London

Monte Muambe rare earths project in Northwest Mozambique. (Image courtesy of Altona Rare Earths.)

Africa-focused Altona Rare Earths (LON: REE) began trading on the London Stock Exchange on Friday, raising £2 million ($2.5m) via an oversubscribed placing and a subscription.

The switch from the Aquis Stock Exchange (AQSE) to the main market is a step up for the explorer, which is advancing the Monte Muambe rare earths project in northwest Mozambique.

Altona said it issued 40 million new ordinary shares at 5 pence a share through an oversubscribed placing of £1.7 million ($2.1m) and a subscription of £322,700 ($406K).

The company said the funds will be used to complete a mineral resource estimate and scoping study that will allow it to increase its holding in Northwest Mozambique.

Shares jumped more than 15% on the company’s debut in London, but were down about 1% to 6.35p by mid-afternoon.

Monte Muambe is a carbonatite-hosted REE deposit located in the African country’s Tete Province. 

Since June 2021, Altona has drilled over 7,000m at the property, defined a JORC exploration target, and is currently preparing its maiden mineral resource estimate and a scoping study. 

The company plans to start production by 2027, delivering its output directly to the UK and the European Union, to help countries diversify away from China. The Asian giant is the market top producer of the rare elements used in everything from consumer electronics to military equipment. 

As of last year, China accounted for about 90% of smelting and about 70% of rare earth production, data from the U.S. Geological Survey shows.