Mining tycoon Tolga Kumova backs European Cobalt
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Tolga Kumova has become a substantial shareholder in another one of the companies he heads.
Mr Kumova — a resources entrepreneur who has raised more than $500 million for his ASX-listed mining ventures — has taken a 9.93 per cent stake in ASX-listed junior European Cobalt (ASX:EUC), a company he chairs.
European Cobalt has been a standout performer in the past year. Its share price has rocketed 775 per cent from the 1.6c it was trading at this time last year.
Mr Kumova ranked number 22 on the Financial Review’s Young Rich List in 2017 with a net worth of $95 million, up from $79 million in 2016, at 39 years of age.
He is best remembered as former managing director and founding shareholder of Syrah Resources, overseeing the company from a tiddler through to an ASX200 mining company.
Mr Kumova’s other mining interests include Alderan Resources (ASX:AL8), New Century Resources (ASX:NCZ), Hill End Gold (ASX:HEG), Meteoric Resources (ASX:MEI) and Draig Resources (ASX:DRG).
The share price of each of these companies has surged between 260 per cent and 1000 per cent in the past 12 months.
Meanwhile, European Cobalt — which is chasing cobalt, nickel and copper in Slovakia and Finland — took out third place on Stockhead’s list of top battery metals performers in 2017 after notching gains of 1150 per cent.
Cobalt in particular is a hot commodity right now due to the electric vehicle uprising. The price of cobalt has climbed nearly 130 per cent in the last year to $US75,205 per tonne.
Demand for cobalt is expected to grow because of its use in lithium cobalt oxide electrodes — a common lithium ion battery technology used in electric cars.
Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates electric cars will account for 2 per cent of the market by 2020, rising to 8 per cent by 2025 and 20 per cent by 2030.
In early December, the company received strong institutional support for a placement that raised $20 million to fund exploration at its flagship Dobsina project in Slovakia.
Initial sampling of waste dump material at the project returned as much as 3.2 per cent cobalt, 8.6 per cent nickel and 11.1 per cent copper.
Historic production grades have fetched up to 8 per cent cobalt and 17 per cent nickel from sulphide mineralisation.
Anything above 2 per cent cobalt, 2 per cent nickel and 1.5 per cent cobalt is generally considered high grade.
In the first half of this year, European Cobalt is continuing with surface drilling targeting cobalt-nickel sulphide mineralisation at the Joremeny prospect.
The company also plans to complete the underground refurbishment of the Joremeny adit and undertake underground drilling at the prospect.