Quest Minerals has launched its public offer to raise $4.5 million to fund its move into Austrian cobalt.

The junior explorer (ASX:QNL) has given investors until February 9 to snap up the 150 million shares on offer at 3c apiece.

Quest won the backing of its shareholders earlier in January to acquire Austrian Projects Corporation, which owns eight projects prospective for cobalt, nickel, copper and gold.

Cobalt has grabbed the attention of investors over the past couple of years thanks in part to a rise in demand for lithium ion batteries in electric vehicles.

Quest, which has a market cap of $7 million currently, is suspended from the ASX while it works to re-comply with the listing rules.

The company will be renamed High Grade Metals and expects to be back trading by March 2 with a new market cap of around $13.6 million following the successful completion of its capital raising.