WA heavy earths developer gets $38m New Yorker backing

Australian heavy rare earths developer Northern Minerals has secured a US$30 million (A$37.9 million) loan from a New York financier to further its research and development (R&D) operations.

Innovation Structured Finance (ISF) will complete the loan over a two-and-a-half-year period, accelerating tax offsets that apply to Northern Minerals’ R&D activities at the Browns Range pilot plant project.

In addition, the company has also announced the appointment of Louis de Klerk as R&D manager, a newly created position.

De Kerk, a chemical engineer of more than 25 years’ experience, will be responsible for all R&D aspects of the Browns Range project, with a specific focus on improving its economic and technical feasibility.

“We are pleased to partner with a strong US-based financier who is demonstrating an interest in funding R&D projects in Australia,” said George Bauk, Northern Mineral’s managing director and CEO.

“ISF is building up a significant presence in Australia, with plans to deploy up to US$100 million (A$126.4 million) into the Australian market through R&D financing over the coming years.

“We expect they will become a major player in a maturing finance market.”