Appian Capital Advisory LLP (“Appian”), the investment advisor to long-term value focused private equity funds that invest solely in mining and mining related companies, announces its investment in Kalbar Operations Pty Ltd ("Kalbar" or "the Company").
Appian’s A$144 million commitment will take Kalbar’s Fingerboards mineral sands project in Victoria Australia (“Fingerboards or the Project”) to a final investment decision and – if approved – into construction and commissioning. Appian made its investment through its Appian Natural Resources Fund II LP.
Fingerboards has the potential to be one of the world’s major producers of zircon, ilmenite, rutile and rare earths – minerals that are critical to technology, transport, communications and renewable energy. The project focuses on a high-grade area of heavy minerals in the Glenaladale deposit in East Gippsland, Victoria, with a total resource of 2.74bn tonnes and average 1.95% grade of Heavy Mineral.
Fingerboards will use conventional dry mining, a wet concentrator plant prior to on-site concentrate production, and rail transportation of concentrate to the port. Its operations are expected to process 170 million tonnes of ore to produce 8.0 million tonnes of heavy mineral concentrate over its current fifteen- year life. The mine will operate to world-class environmental standards and be progressively rehabilitated throughout the operating period to return the land to agriculture and native vegetation.
The Project is expected to bring economic benefits to the East Gippsland region, which has been heavily impacted by drought, bushfires and COVID-19. Kalbar will create ~200 roles during Fingerboards’ construction, as well as 200 ongoing operational roles. The mine will support local businesses, suppliers and services as well as paying taxes and royalties to the Victorian government.
Fingerboards will continue to be operated by the experienced team led by CEO, Jozsef Patarica, and Appian looks forward to working with them to turn Kalbar’s vision for the Project into reality.
Appian provides high quality mining companies with the long-term investment they need to reach their full potential. We believe that strong safety, social and environmental performance is key to creating long term value. Appian is a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment, a World Bank partner in Africa, and committed to global best practice as defined by the International Council on Metals and Mining. The company will also look to support Kalbar’s community programs though its philanthropic vehicle, the Appian Way Charitable Foundation, which recently oversaw a $600,000 contribution to aid the response to COVID-19 in Brazil.