5e Advanced Materials Listing
The arrival of FEAM – 5e Advanced Materials – on Nasdaq today is potentially a game-changer for Boron and strategic mineral supplies not only in the USA but also globally. Boron is needed for green energy and strategic applications in aerospace and defense as well as in large markets for (borosilicate) glass, ceramics, enamels, and steel in automobiles. How will FEAM build out its business and facility?
5e is building out a vertical integrated speciality materials business with its own resource – the largest new resource of Boron in the world in 2022.
Boron is an everyday applications in glass, steel, in phones but what is critical is that it is needed for energy transition such as EVs, solar panels, and windmills.
According to Henri Tausch, CEO of 5e Advanced Materials, he describes the challenge as managing Boron as a critical element for energy transition similar to Lithium a decade ago but Boron has many more applications.
“If you have a permanent magnet, needed for EVs, there are two atoms of rare earths and one atom of Boron and without Boron, the magnet does not work. Our aim is to build out a downstream application with own resource to extract Boron for use in high value applications such as semiconductors.
“Customers and revenue will be down the line but the small sale site will come online later in 2022. Longer term Boron will be for OEMs and Green Energy companies. LOIs are in place and being built out right now.
“Boron is scarcer than is thought. It is only available in a few places. 85% comes from Turkey and some in the US. Its scarcity makes the demand high”.
As far as the roadmap is concerned, at the end of 2024, there will be a larger plant. In the meantime, studies are being done to show the numbers behind the company that make this an exciting new supplier of Boron.
The Fort Cady Facility in Southern California
Fort Cady is the largest known new conventional boron deposit globally. 5e describes the facility as a “Light-touch environmental footprint with additional ESG initiatives in train (solution extraction, geothermal potential)”. In addition, there are co-product benefits with Lithium, SOP Gypsum on site.
Compelling Story as an Integrated Advanced Materials Business
5e Advanced Materials (FEAM) claims it has significant resources and advantages for the market given the scarce supply of Boron.
Access to low cost supply
400ktpa+ target run-rate production subject to completion of a bankable feasibility study, detailed engineering and financing (post 2023).
5.1% boric acid in solution
Low carbon footprint
Attractive cost profile via by-product sales
Build or buy advanced material capabilities
Enter agreements to deliver BORON+ advanced materials
Go-to-market strategy underpinned by long-term partnerships
R&D to innovate new decarbonization-enabling applications
Supply Chain Leader
FEAM also believes it can supply multiple strategic mineral forms to drive the new energy sectors forward with growing demand for Boron: Provision of the mineral Boron as a raw materials, higher value-ad by supplying Boric Acid as Boron Oxide with further high value materials in Carbides and Nitrides. The latter is an exciting material when supplied for Boron Nitride Nanotubes, which are powering research into Hydrogen-boron fusion and other aerospace and defense applications
Roadmap Towards Strategic Advantage
FEAM outlines 3 pillars in its strategy for building out its business. The first is a focus on key sectors and applications: Green energy end uses that enable decarbonization; building out a diversified portfolio of value-add Boron products, and positioning the company as a thought leader in Boron.
The second pillar of the strategy is ‘innovation and intellectual property’: FEAM will build proprietary processes and capabilities; with a focus on research and development, the company will seek out emerging needs and identify new market opportunities which are sustainable and differentiated. In line with this, the company will partner with research institutions involved in leading-edge Boron studies.
Third, FEAM. has long-term commitments to deliver product for mutual benefit and commercial gain with strategic partners along the value chain. By embedding 5e in supply chains, the company intends to secure long-term commitments and relationships with partners in multiple business sectors. This in turn will inform and require investment in research centres through mutual cooperation and creating a harmonious circle of innovation and new market applications over time.
FEAM’s corporate resource are helpful in understanding the Boron landscape. THe attahced form their IR section is a simple guide to understanding the raneg and diversity of applicaitons where Boron is present.