Bushveld is a low-cost integrated miner of vanadium
Vametco vanadium mine and processing plant in South Africa is currently in phase 2 development
Mining rights granted for Mokopane vanadium project, in which Bushveld is the majority stakeholder
Acquired industrial group Vanchem to diversify activities into batteries
Set up a battery maker investment platform to create a vanadium 'vertical'
How it is doing
Bushveld turned in record annual production of 2,833 mtV in the 12 months to end 2019, in line with guidance. In the fourth quarter, the company's Vametco operation achieved record quarterly production.
Overall production cash costs for 2019 were of US$18.10/kgV, a 5% reduction relative to 2018.
The company generated group EBITDA of US$32.6mln in 2019, as detailed in financial results which were released at the end of June.
Looking ahead, the transformation programme at the Vametco operation should see output rise to 3,400 metric tonnes of vanadium, up from the current 2019 guidance of 2,800-2,900 tonnes.
In March the company temporarilly shut down its operations due to the coronavirus crisis.
Bushveld has doubled down on vanadium with the acquisition of Vanchem, which has producing vanadium assets in South Africa plus extensive downstream capability.
Vanchem should allow Bushveld to boost production to 10,000mtV per year as it already produces approximately 960mtV on an annualised basis, utilising only one of the three kilns on site.
The Vanchem acquisition also unlocks the potential supply of the feedstock from the company’s Mokopane vanadium project, significantly reducing the potential capital outlay and accelerating the development schedule.
In November 2019, Bushveld invested US$5mln in Avalon Battery Corporation to help it complete its merger with redT Energy.
The investment also kick-started the miner's own vanadium battery technology investment platform, which will see it take stakes in OEMS and funnel investments towards other VRFB manufacturers.
From the chief executive:
"Vanadium, remains well positioned in a post-Covid-19 world that will still see a rise infrastructure spending, hence increased consumption of vanadium l and will likely continue on a decarbonisation energy transition path that will see energy storage (and with it VRFBs) grow in prominence," said chief executive Fortune Mojapelo.
"Bushveld Minerals' growth strategy will benefit South Africa by ensuring the country's natural strengths help it to become a global leader in our industry."
Analysts at Peel Hunt said the Vanchem addition provides for a production growth factor of 1.8 times over the medium term while creating a "significantly more sustainable cash flow profile", with the acquisition offering potential for "further upside".