Northern Minerals has signed an offtake agreement with Thyssenkrupp Materials for 100 per cent of the product from the Browns Range pilot plant project in Western Australia.
The deal with Thyssenkrupp replaces an offtake agreement that was terminated with Lianyugang New Materials last week.
Thyssenkrupp will purchase all heavy rare earth carbonate from the pilot plant project, with the flexibility for Northern Minerals to supply heavy rare earths as separated products in the future.
The offtake agreement involves the two parties working together on implementing separating technologies at Browns Range and on potential expansions of the project.
The agreement will commence immediately and will include all product currently stockpiled and future production.
Northern Minerals chief executive officer George Bauk said the offtake agreement with Thyssenkrupp was a significant endorsement of Browns Range.
“The continued shift of new car sales to electric vehicles is gaining traction, with all major carmakers introducing electric vehicles variants of existing models over the coming years,” Bauk said.
“With this shift, both car and component makers are accelerating plans to invest further down the production chain in order to secure surety of supply.”
Importantly for Northern Minerals, the new agreement doesn’t include any price caps, giving it full exposure to increasing dysprosium and terbium prices, which are up 60 per cent and 35 per cent so far this year.
Thyssenkrupp chief executive Wolfgang Schnittker said the company was looking forward to collaborating with Northern Minerals, one of the few suppliers of rare earths outside of China.
“As the exclusive marketer of these high-quality products we have the opportunity to strengthen our customer relationships long-term and expand our positioning in this field,” Schnittker said.