Lithium Royalty owner mulls sale, IPO in battery metals boom

Construction at Finniss lithium project. (Image courtesy of Core Lithium | Twitter.)

Waratah Capital Advisors Ltd., a Canadian alternative investment manager, is weighing a sale of its holdings in a lithium royalties business as demand for the battery metal surges.

The Toronto-based firm is considering either a private sale of the closely held Lithium Royalty Corp. or selling shares through an initial public offering later this year or in 2023, according to a person familiar with the matter. Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. are advising on the process, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public.

Waratah is considering the move as demand for lithium, a key mineral used in batteries that power electric vehicles, is soaring with automakers advancing efforts to bring more electric vehicles onto roads and countries pushing to electrify economies as part of a shift away from fossil fuels.

Lithium Royalty is mainly focused on investing in revenue royalties on top-tier existing and in-development battery material projects, according to its website.

The Toronto-based firm, which was founded in 2018, has royalties on projects in countries including Canada, Australia and the US. Those include the flagship project of Australian miner Core Lithium Ltd., which counts Tesla Inc. as a future customer, and the upcoming Brazilian mine of Vancouver-based Sigma Lithium Corp.

Waratah declined to comment on its plans for Lithium Royalty. Waratah manages more than C$3.5 billion ($2.7 billion) of assets for wealthy individuals, family offices, foundations and pension funds, according its website. Waratah’s investment in Lithium Royalty falls under its private equity strategy.

(By Layan Odeh)

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