Bill Oliver, the geologist behind vanadium explorer Tando Resources and cobalt play Celsius Resources, looks like he might be on a three-of-a-kind with his latest ASX venture, copper and zinc stock Koppar Resources.

Norway-focused Koppar (ASX:KRX) made its debut on the Australian bourse at the end of May and has been trading at a premium ever since.

Koppar finished its first week on the ASX at 27.5c — a 38 per cent premium to its 20c issue price. It’s now trading at 25c.

Two of the three directors are Patrick Burke and Bill Oliver, who were involved with the successful listing of Tando (ASX:TNO) in November last year.

Mr Oliver is also the head of Celsius Resources (ASX:CLA) — another battery metals explorer.

Both Tando and Celsius have witnessed strong share price growth in recent months.

Since listing last year Tando has jumped 295 per cent to trade at 17c on Friday (after a recent share split), while Celsius rocketed 335 per cent to 13.5c.

While Celsius and Tando are battery metals explorers, Mr Oliver believes Koppar has the potential to achieve similar share price appreciation.

Koppar is about to start exploring 58 sq km of mining tenements in the Trondheim region of Norway.

The mines have a history dating back to the 1600s — and have produced 85 million tonnes of copper at grades of 1 per cent to 2 per cent, the company says. Anything over 1.5 per cent is considered high-grade for copper.

Copper a ‘sleeping giant’

“I think copper is a sleeping giant,” Mr Oliver told Stockhead.

“The use of copper and nickel in electric vehicle batteries is one of those stories that won’t go away.”

A typical electric car needs almost four times the amount of copper (75kg for a plug-in) compared to an average combustion engine vehicle, Morgan Stanley estimates.

A research report from Amadee + Company predicts sales of 100 million electric vehicles globally by 2025.

That’s already helping drive increased prices in copper stocks — especially ASX small caps.

Koppar’s Norway tenement locations. Map: Koppar Resources

“I think the lithium, cobalt and vanadium space are across the energy story, whereas the copper and nickel space certainly haven’t factored it in and it’s no accident there’s a lot of deals being done in copper in general currently,” Mr Oliver said.

The interest has already started in Koppar, with the company closing its $4.5 million initial public offer oversubscribed.

Koppar was formed in February this year to acquire Koppar Resources Europe, which owns nine copper and zinc tenements in the Trøndelag region of Norway.

‘Blank canvas’

The projects are located in a region where mining took place from the 1600s through to the 1960s. However, they have seen little modern-day exploration.

“It’s a bit of a blank canvas really,” he said. “There’s a lot of opportunity there.”

Mr Oliver says aggressive exploration and exploration success are the keys to adding value for shareholders.

“We’ll be active and we’ll generate targets for drilling,” he said.

“So that will come very, very quickly.

“Given the historical results and the fact we’ve got a reasonable coverage of projects, I think we have a good opportunity there to have exploration success if we follow a systematic approach.”

Koppar is expecting to initiate its exploration programs over the next month, with the aim of identifying targets for drilling in September this year.