What Four Analysts and Goldman Sachs See In This Small-Cap Lithium Explorer
Lithium is the lifeblood of batteries for electric vehicles and alternative energy storage, and use of both is predicted to skyrocket in the coming years. Against this backdrop, a small-cap firm that is moving rapidly with a strong partner to develop lithium projects in Argentina has caught the attention of Goldman Sachs and industry analysts.
More than a million electric cars have been sold in Europe, a milestone that China reached last year. By year-end Europe is predicted to sell a cumulative total of 1.35 million electric vehicles, as growth is speeding up. EVs appear to be an unstoppable force: China has declared that by 2025, 20% of sales must be "new energy" vehicles; India has decreed that end of diesel and gas cars by 2030, and Japan has mandated that by 2030, 50-70% of vehicles sales be "next generation." All of this means more batteries and more batteries mean more lithium.
Vancouver-based Advantage Lithium Corp. (AAL:TSX.V; AVLIF:OTCQX) is positioning itself to take advantage of this burgeoning demand for lithium.
The company has five properties in Argentina, with Cauchari, located in Jujuy province, serving as its flagship asset. The Cauchari-Olaroz Basin is a major lithium center and the world's second largest brine producing basin, behind the Atacama in Chile.
Advantage acquired a 50% interest in the Cauchari project in 2017 and at the end of that year increased its stake to 75%. Its 25% partner, Orocobre Ltd., is a CA$912 million market-cap lithium producer that is producing lithium from the Olaroz JV brine project adjacent to Advantage's Cauchari property. The Olaroz lithium brine production facility sits about 10 km north of Cauchari.
Also in Advantage's neighborhood is a Lithium Americas/Ganfeng lithium project.
Advantage has a close relationship with Orocobre. It owns 31% of Advantage's shares and CEO Richard Seville sits on Advantage's Board of Directors. Through this partnership, Advantage has access to Orocobre's geological knowledge as well as production experience.
Advantage is moving rapidly to delineate the Cauchari resource. In a year, the company has drilled 15 holes, completed pump tests on five of them, released a resource update, released a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) and initiated phase 3 drilling to expand and update the resource. The company anticipates releasing a definitive feasibility study (DFS) in early 2019.