Home > News > Avalon to accelerate...

Avalon to accelerate Critical Minerals Strategy for Kenora properties

Sep 11, 2023

Consistent with its strategic transformation into a leading Canadian critical minerals producer serving the North American market, Avalon Advanced Materials Inc.  announced the addition of two new directors who bring extensive expertise in international capital markets and resource development.

  • Alec Kodatsky, Founding Partner, Forthlane Partners, Ltd., and former Brendon-Woods "Top Gun" metals and mining equity analyst and a mining engineer, joins Avalon as a member of its Board of Directors (the "Board").

  • Benny Loix, Vice President – Commercial North America, at SCR Sibelco NV ("Sibelco") joins Avalon as Sibelco's nominee to the Board. 

These appointments will further support a new growth phase at Avalon, consisting of bringing the Company's portfolio of critical minerals assets into production, as well as building a vertically integrated lithium supply chain in Ontario. 

"Mr. Kodatsky and Mr. Loix represent significant additions to Avalon's Board of Directors, deepening our expertise and capabilities with respect to executing on the Company's aggressive growth agenda," said Alan Ferry, Lead Director, Avalon. "We look forward to their help in furthering our strategic objectives, which include building a midstream lithium processing facility in Ontario that can efficiently, securely and sustainably see the province's lithium supply the North American EV battery market."

Mr. Kodatsky, based in Toronto, who will also join the Company's Audit Committee, brings more than two decades of experience conducting in-depth financial analysis and research in the metals and mining sector. He has extensive experience in firsthand assessments of operating and developmental mining assets for institutional and investment banking clients in Canada and internationally. 

Pursuant to the terms of an investor rights agreement entered into between Avalon and Sibelco on June 14, 2013 as part of the joint venture between the two companies, Mr. Loix, who will be based in Charlotte NC, joins Avalon to accelerate the development of Avalon's portfolio of lithium deposits. He has served in Sibelco's Treasury Executive Vice President Group since 2008, being in charge of global M&A, insurance and risk management and was recently appointed as Sibelco's Vice President for North America. 

"These appointments complement other recent changes to the management team and Board, that have provided the necessary expertise to execute on our 'Avalon 2.0' initiatives," said Scott Monteith, Chief Executive Officer, Avalon. "We are very focused on operationalizing our assets and maximizing Avalon's market potential as the need for lithium and our other critical minerals continues to grow exponentially."

Marilyn Spink, a Director since June 2020, has retired from the Board. The Company would like to sincerely thank Ms. Spink for her strong service to the Company. 

Strategic Update

Avalon recently announced a Mineral Resource Estimate ("MRE") for the Avalon-Sibelco joint venture lithium deposit at Separation Rapids near Kenora, ON. This updated MRE, compliant with NI 43-101, revealed 10.08 million tonnes averaging 1.35% of Measured and Indicated Lithium Oxide ("Li2O"), a 20% increase compared to previous results. The MRE confirmed the commerciality of the Separation Rapids deposit for both the glass-ceramics and lithium battery markets. The Avalon-Sibelco joint venture is pursuing the next phase of development at the site including a definitive feasibility study, while also planning to continue exploration at its other Snowbank and Lilypad lithium projects. 

The MRE on Separation Rapids follows the strategic acquisition of a 383-acre industrial site in Thunder Bay, ON that will host Ontario's first lithium hydroxide conversion facility. In July, Avalon announced a technology partnership with Metso to provide the facility with innovative process technology solutions. 

Avalon is also seeking drill permit applications for its Nechalacho rare earths and zirconium project southeast of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. A definitive feasibility study had previously identified a material deposit of zirconium and heavy rare earths minerals. 

About Avalon Advanced Materials Inc.

Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. is a Canadian mineral development company focused on vertically integrating the Ontario lithium supply chain. The Company, through its joint venture with Sibelco NV, is currently developing its Separation Rapids lithium deposit near Kenora, ON, while also continuing to advance the Lilypad and Snowbank lithium projects located near Fort Hope, ON. Avalon is also working to develop its Nechalacho rare earths and zirconium project located in the Northwest Territories. This deposit contains critical minerals for use in advanced technologies in the communications and defense industries among other sectors. 

In addition to these upstream activities, Avalon is also executing on a key initiative to develop Ontario's first midstream lithium hydroxide processing facility in Thunder Bay, ON, a vital link bridging the lithium resources of the north with downstream EV battery manufacturing customers and markets in the south. Social responsibility and environmental stewardship are corporate cornerstones. Avalon is listed on the TSX: AVL and OTCQB: AVLNF.

About SCR Sibelco NV

Headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, SCR Sibelco NV is a global leader in material solutions. Sibelco mines, processes and sells specialty industrial minerals  –  particularly silica, clays, feldspathics and olivine – and is a leader in glass recycling. Sibelco's solutions serve a diverse range of industries including semi-conductors, solar photovoltaic, glass, ceramics, construction, coatings, polymers and water purification. The Sibelco Group has production facilities in more than 30 countries and a team of more than 5,000 people worldwide.

Tags: Northern Ontario / Press Releases / Battery Metals / All Articles