What We Do
N is a publicly traded company that is developing the Elk Creek Project, a very large underground deposit in southeast Nebraska that is rich in Niobium, Scandium and Titanium – superalloy metals that have all been designated as “Critical Minerals” by the U.S. Government.
Our Company: At A Glance
- Tickers: TSX: NB / OTCQX: NIOBF
- Market Cap (11/1/2019): CAD $148.8 million; US $113.2 million
- Insider Ownership: 8.66%
- Incorporated: 1987
- Employees: 10
- Corporate HQ: Centennial, CO
Our Planned Products
NioCorp plans to produce the following commercial products from Elk Creek:
- Ferroniobium (FeNb): Used in mega-steel infrastructure projects, oil and gas pipelines, vehicles, commercial aviation, aerospace, and defense systems.
- Scandium Trioxide (Sc2O3): Added to high-performance aluminum alloys used in the transportation, defense, commercial aviation and other industries.
- Titanium Dioxide (TiO2): Used in commercial and defense markets, including pigments, thin films, cosmetics, aircraft, armor, ships and other equipment.
- Highest-grade primary Niobium resource in North America, and the only such resource under development in the U.S. Additional market opportunities are available from a co-product (Scandium) and a byproduct (Titanium).
- The Company’s three products are valuable superalloy additives used in large, diverse end markets, including transportation, aerospace and defense, oil and gas, advanced manufacturing, and steel mega-structures. Niobium has a global market value of over $2 billion.1
- All three of NioCorp’s planned products have been determined to be “Critical Minerals” by the U.S. Government.2
- The Elk Creek Project has already secured all major federal permits required for construction.
- Strong Pre-Production Sales
- 75% of the Company’s Ferroniobium product (FeNb) for the first 10 years of production is under an enforceable sales contract.
- 50% of FeNb production to ThyssenKrupp enables in-principle eligibility for a German Government Loan Guarantee of > $146M-$179M.3
- 12% of average annual scandium production over first 10 years has been sold to Traxys North America, a global leader in specialty metals.
- Highly attractive mine economics:4
- 36-year mine life with 2.86-year after-tax payback period from production
- Pre-tax Net Present Value (“NPV”) of $2.56 billion and Internal Rate of Return (“IRR”) of 27.3%; after-tax NPV of $2.1 billion and IRR of 25.8%5
- Average annual EBITDA of $370 million over Life of Mine (“LoM”); average EBITDA margin over LOM of 67%6
- Seasoned management team led by veterans with decades of experience developing and operating mines and advanced materials facilities.
1 Source: Roskill 2017 report.
2 Federal Register notice of May 18, 2018.
3 Receipt of such a loan guarantee is subject to final approval and other conditions.
4 Source: 2019 Elk Creek Project Feasibility Study.
5 Assumes an 8% discount rate.
6 See these disclaimers on the use of non-GAAP references.
Superalloy Blog Posts
As the U.S. looks to repair crumbling infrastructure systems, I expect to see more high-performance steels (HPS) used in structures like bridges because of the many powerful benefits they deliver. HPS steels containing a small amount of ferroniobium – which NioCorp plans to produce in southeast Nebraska at our Elk Creek Superalloy Materials Project once we are funded and in operation – are among the strongest and most durable steels on the market today.
If a $2 trillion U.S. infrastructure package is enacted, it could create a major, long-term demand boom for the critical minerals needed by infrastructure and advanced transportation systems, according to NioCorp’s CEO Mark Smith.
One global macro trend is highly likely to accelerate in the aftermath of COVID-19: increased investment in domestic materials supply chains as a means of reducing the reliance of Western nations on supply chains in developing nations. Asia’s dominance in many strategic supply chains has become painfully obvious since the COVID-19 pandemic erupted.
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