Graphite stocks are having a bad week after Battery Minerals lost its investor
Link copied to
It’s been a rough time for ASX graphite stocks of late — with most sliding further this week after a key investor backed out of a deal to help fund a Battery Minerals project.
The Mozambique-focused graphite play led its cohort down this week with a 35 per cent drop after private equity investor Resource Capital Funds pulled out of a deal saying the graphite market “no longer meets its investment criteria”.
The investment firm declined to comment when contacted by Stockhead.
There are 42 ASX stocks offering exposure to graphite according to resources data provider MakCorp.
Of these, 31 have lost value since Christmas, Bloomberg data shows.
This week about the same number lost further value or went unchanged.
Despite Resource Capital’s back-out, Battery Minerals boss David Flanagan believes the graphite market outlook “continues to strengthen”, driven by demand for batteries, heat-resistant bricks and fire suppressants.
What drives graphite demand
While heat resistant or “refractory” bricks are a key application of graphite, it’s recently attracted attention as an ingredient in the anode component of lithium-ion batteries that power electric cars.
Silicon will be an important new anode material in next generation of lithium-ion batteries, but it is not expected to supplant graphite before future battery technologies arrive from 2030.
Meanwhile, Chinese demand for graphite-based fire-suppresant building materials may be the biggest driver, as we outlined in a recent Stockhead graphite guide.
Building safety could be a major driver following the London Grenfell Tower tragedy and China’s push for flame-retardant building materials following an explosion at the Tianjin Port in December 2015.
Here’s a list of ASX stocks with exposure to graphite courtesy of leading ASX data provider MakCorp. (Scroll or swipe for full table)
Nearly 35 per cent was wiped off Battery Minerals shares this week after the Resource Capital deal fell through.
Other graphite stocks were sold down as well.
Crater Gold Mining (ASX:CGN) slid nearly 17 per cent, while Volt Resources (ASX:VRC) and Castle Minerals (ASX:CDT) both slipped around 10 per cent.
About 22 players notched losses of between 1 per cent and 10 per cent.
Crater is primarily a gold explorer focused on its flagship Crater Mountain project in Papua New Guinea, but the company also has a graphite deposit called “Golden Gate” in Australia.
The company revealed in April that it had identified “jumbo and large flake” graphite — which fetches a higher price than smaller flake graphite — at the project.
Volt, meanwhile, announced on Thursday that it had received binding commitments for a share placement that would raise $2 million to fund its Bunyu graphite project in Tanzania.
The company is nearing the completion of a feasibility study.
Castle Minerals owns the Kambale graphite deposit, which is part of its Wa project in Ghana.
The company is looking for a partner to help it advance the project.
Stockhead is proud to use MakCorp as a provider of great value, accurate and reliable data on ASX-listed mining stocks. For more information head to MakCorp’s website.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.