Mineral Resources (MinRes) has finalized a deal to acquire the Bald Hill lithium mine for $260 million, stirring queries among some investors.
Situated in Western Australia (WA), Bald Hill stands as one of the few remaining operational lithium mines in the state. Previously under the ownership of an Alita Resources subsidiary, MinRes has been engaged in negotiations for the site since September.
The acquisition received court approval in late September during a Perth hearing, with administrators McGrathNicol disclosing the $260 million price tag this Tuesday.
However, the disclosed price has prompted uncertainty among shareholders, particularly considering reports that more than ten potential buyers had expressed interest in the mine. This revelation hinted at the possibility of a bidding war amidst the ongoing flurry of lithium-related activities in WA.
In its 2023 annual general meeting, MinRes emphasized its dedication to expanding its footprint in the lithium sector and outlined plans to double production at Bald Hill to 300,000 tonnes per annum.
Contrarily, McGrathNicol’s evaluation suggests a varying worth for Bald Hill, estimating its value between $0 and $94.2 million. Hence, the finalized sale price of $100 million (alongside associated debt payments) surpassed the estimated range.
Chris Ellison, the Managing Director of MinRes, highlighted the focus on execution, stating, “This year is all about delivery. We’re ramping up operations in three lithium mines until the middle of next year. Our mining services segment continues to strengthen, fostering stronger relationships with customers, and we’re on track to supply gas by 2025.