Pilbara Minerals strengthens Pilgangoora lithium foothold

The Pilgangoora operation. Image: Pilbara Minerals

Pilbara Minerals has finalised its acquisition of the Altura lithium project in Western Australia from Altura Mining for $201 million.

Pilbara Minerals previously secured the agreement to purchase Altura Mining’s lithium operations in October 2020.

The acquisition will provide Pilbara Minerals 100 per cent ownership of the Altura lithium project, which grants the former with control of the largest independent hard-rock lithium mining and processing operation globally.

Pilbara Minerals managing director and chief executive officer Ken Brinsden said the deal marks a historic day for the company.

“This is a historic day in Pilbara Minerals’ relatively short history as a lithium producer and marks an important moment, not just for our shareholders, but also for the lithium industry in Australia,” he said.

“The well-timed and cost-effective acquisition of our neighbouring operation is one of the most compelling transactions seen in the lithium sector in recent times. It represents a unique opportunity to realise tangible synergies from integrating two very similar mining and processing operations and adopting a holistic approach to extracting value from what is essentially the same orebody.”

Brinsden said the deal has allowed the company to become a lithium leader on the ASX.

“This deal secures our position as the leading pure-play lithium company on the ASX, with ownership of the largest independent hard-rock lithium complex in the world,” he said.

“It provides for a larger, more resilient and flexible operation with available offtake, which is an important strategic advantage at a time when a turnaround in the lithium market appears to be upon us.”

Pilbara Minerals’ flagship Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project neighbours the Altura lithium project.

With control of two processing plants, Brinsden said this will increase its ability to meet customer demands.

“Having ownership of two processing plants provides the flexibility to both blend products to suit customer/market requirements, as well as dial production up or down as required to meet customer needs and market conditions,” he said.

Pilbara Minerals will now focus on integrating the Altura project into its portfolio.

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