Australian Cannabis Outlook 2021: Medical Leads the Way

2021 is set to be a crucial year for Australia’s medical cannabis industry as new products hit the market and patient numbers rise.

Click here to read the latest Australian cannabis outlook.

Australia’s cannabis market is moving along as regulations fall into place for sector expansion.

Under the current rules, the market may appear to be at a standstill, but recent approvals show there is momentum for a vibrant medical cannabis industry that will carry on in 2021.

Even though companies on the ground don’t expect to see recreational use become legal next year, Australia’s medical cannabis market is still expected to continue ahead with stronger numbers.


Here the Investing News Network (INN) offers some key points on what may be ahead for the Australian cannabis market in 2021, with insight from expert market watchers.

Australian cannabis outlook 2021: Medical still responsible for growth

As part of its Oceania Cannabis Report: Second Edition, international drug research firm Prohibition Partners indicates that the entire cannabis industry in Oceania is expected to be worth US$1.55 billion by 2024, with medical cannabis accounting for approximately 40 percent of that amount.

“Let’s build a very successful business based on medicinal cannabis … we’ve got to ride the global wave of global acceptance,” Brett Schwarz, CFO and corporate advisor with privately held firm Cannatrek, told INN.

Schwarz explained that it’s hard to project when exactly Australia may legalise recreational use, a key catalyst for the development of a cannabis market.

“We will one day, but we can’t say whether it’s in one year or five years,” said Schwarz. “There are more politicians talking about it, there are more doctors talking about it — that I think that it will come in time.”

The Cannatrek executive was cautious about expecting recreational cannabis to open anytime soon, instead opting to place his emphasis on what’s ahead for the medical market.

A study from FreshLeaf Analytics pegs Australian medical market sales at AU$95 million in 2020.

“Australia is a maturing market — not mature, but maturing, and I think the patients are seeing that, so they’re feeling more comfortable,” Schwarz said.

In the Prohibition Partners report, Roby Zomer, co-founder, managing director and CEO of MGC Pharma (ASX:MXC,OTC Pink:MGCLF), states that more education is driving up patient interest in cannabis; meanwhile, medical professionals are becoming more comfortable prescribing it.

“This is not only driving legislation change around the world, but driving demand for quality medicinal cannabis products,” the MCG Pharma executive said.

The growth trajectory is clear to see for medical cannabis in Australia. According to FreshLeaf Analytics, product availability rose quickly in the latter half of 2020 with 150 items now available for patients.

The research firm also indicates that at the end of 2020 there were 30,000 registered patients allowed to purchase medical cannabis in the country.

“Recent price decline has brought the illegal and legal markets to parity and has put us in line, from a pricing perspective, with more mature markets such as Canada,” the study explains.

Australian cannabis outlook 2021: CBD set for new year push

In December, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) gave the green light for low-dose cannabidiol (CBD) to become available through over-the-counter methods without a prescription. The Australian regulatory agency is in charge of the rules for medical cannabis.

In the document, the TGA indicates that this new ruling will officially come into effect in February.

“That’s very exciting, that’s the maturity,” Schwarz told INN about the TGA approval.

Any CBD products will need to be approved by the TGA and make it into the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods. According to the regulatory agency, no products have yet been added.

Althea Group Holdings (ASX:AGH) CEO Josh Fegan said his company was glad to see the TGA’s decision to allow these products for sale over the counter, and also to increase the maximum recommended daily dose.

“This decision provides confirmation of that marketplace,” Fegan said; he confirmed that his firm will be working to make products available through this ruling.

Australian cannabis outlook 2021: Investor takeaway

Investors in the Australian cannabis market have watched the sector slowly develop over time.

Thanks to an expanding medical market, the industry has much to look forward to. What’s more, the growing potential for international exports has become available to companies as well.

Schwarz told INN cannabis companies in the country want to prove that their operations can serve Australia even as this international opportunity follows closely behind — he explained that his firm specifically is eyeing exports to Europe and throughout Asia.

As companies continue to expand according to market needs, growing pains could be expected as marijuana players set themselves up to capitalise on patient growth in Australia. But overall the sentiment from key players is that the future looks bright for cannabis in the country.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Bryan Mc Govern, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

Editorial Disclosure: The Investing News Network does not guarantee the accuracy or thoroughness of the information reported in the interviews it conducts. The opinions expressed in these interviews do not reflect the opinions of the Investing News Network and do not constitute investment advice. All readers are encouraged to perform their own due diligence.

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WHAT'S IN STORE FOR THE CANNABIS SECTOR IN 2022?

The Investing News Network (INN) spoke with analysts, market watchers and insiders about which trends will impact this sector in the year ahead.

✓ Trends   ✓ Forecasts    ✓ Top Stocks


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Hygrovest Limited

Building a globally diversified portfolio of companies in high-growth industries.



Overview

Hygrovest Limited (ASX:HGV) has a globally diversified portfolio focused on investing in private and public companies in high-growth industries. Hygrovest has investments in cannabis-focused companies and in December 2021, the company expanded their portfolio to include healthcare, natural resources, and the digital economy as well as e-sports, sports betting, online gaming, and fintech.


Hygrovest's diversified investment is managed by Parallax Ventures Inc. (“Parallax”), a specialist management company in Canada, under a long-term strategic partnership. The agreement with Parallax offers access to new investment opportunities, added material value to existing investments, minimised HGV’s fixed cost structure, and secured meaningful investment presence in HGV’s key investment market – North America.

Hygrovest's portfolio includes a portfolio of CBD and cannabis investments in cultivation, extraction and consumer products with material investments in Weed Me, WeedMD, Sequoya, Harvest One and Southern Cannabis Holdings.

Hygrovest

Hygrovest operates a robust share purchase plan, which provides eligible shareholders the opportunity to invest in the portfolio at a 51 percent discount to net value assets. This attribute is exceptionally advantageous with the company's generation of substantial realized gains from its sale of Dosecann Inc. and Medipharm LABS, two Canadian cannabis-based companies providing leading cannabis technologies in extraction and product development.

A significant goal for Hygrovest's Board includes trading its share price at a premium to NAV, considering prospective returns from its high-quality portfolio companies. The company has seen positive trends in investment returns in the past five years and has generated a Multiple on Invested Capital (MOIC) of 1.3 times capital invested. Its mixture of private and listed companies across the emerging Australian and offshore cannabis and hemp markets primes the company for dominant standing as a major investment company.

Hygrovest Test Tube

Its highly-developed investment process includes active formulating, frequent reviewing, and effective investment best practices based on reliable valuation information. The Hygrovest Board operates as the final approval level for acquisition and the sale of investment proposals, which involve an exercise of rights attached to specific investments. Its current investment approval process operates based on Hygrovest's Investment Management Agreement with Parallax Ventures Inc, effective from 1 June 1 2019.

Future plans for the company involve focusing on U.S. investment expansion, employing liquidity into Canadian markets and developing its brands and distribution chains. The company notes significant attention towards its Harvest One Cannabis (TSXV:HVT) investee, which saw a 116 percent increase in value during February 2021, reaching totals of CAD$13.4 million.

Harvest One

"You can see with Harvest One, which is our largest investment, has a massive distribution network and has very high-quality plans coming along. We believe those types of investments in the long-term will be exceptionally attractive," commented Hygrovest Non Executive Director Michael Curtis.

Hygrovest Limited comprises a strong team with over 80 years of combined experience in investment banking, corporate strategy and cannabis fields. The company also benefits from having the Canadian-based Parallax Ventures Inc. on its Board as a strategic asset manager. Together, this leadership primes Hygrovest for significant success and growth with strategies to enhance acceleration and collaboration within the portfolio.

Company Highlights

  • Hygrovest has a globally diversified portfolio that includes private and public companies in high-growth industries.
  • Hygrovest has expanded their portfolio to include healthcare, natural resources, and the digital economy as well as e-sports, sports betting, online gaming, and fintech.
  • Investment return in the past five years has generated a MOIC of 1.1 times the capital invested. This financial upside is amplified with the company's MOIC of 3.5 times on investments sold in that period including sales of Dosecann Inc. and Medipharm LABS.
  • Hygrovest has a proven track record in acquiring and realizing significant value from its investments. They combine years of professional experience in investment banking, corporate governance and strategic acquisition.
  • Harvest One Cannabis, Hygrovest's largest investment, saw a 116 percent increase in value totaling CAD$13.4 million in February 2021, presenting the company with exceptional growth potential.
  • The company has a strong management team and benefits from having the Canadian-based Parallax Ventures Inc. on its board as its asset manager.
Weed Me

Hygrovest Limited operates a robust investment portfolio consisting of listed and private cannabis companies across a diverse variety of emerging cannabis-related sectors, including healthcare, technology, infrastructure, logistics, processing, cultivation, equipment and retail.

Current investment in its portfolio include:

  • Harvest One Cannabis Inc. (CVE:HVT)
  • Southern Cannabis Holdings
  • Weed Me
  • Martha Jane Medical
  • Vitagenne
  • Sequoya
  • WeedMD Rx Inc. (CVE:WMD)
  • Bespoke Capital Acquisition Corp.

Hygrovest 's portfolio of investments sold:

  • BevCanna Enterprises Inc. (CNSX:BEV)
  • Fire & Flower (TSE:FAF)
  • MediPharm LABS (TSE:LABS)
  • Hemple
  • Axiomm Technologies
  • Volero Brands Inc.

This portfolio leverages favorable market conditions with the majority of Canadian listed cannabis producer valuations seen dropping in 2020. Hygrovest intends to take advantage of this market backdrop and continue to create substantial investment opportunities, strategic partnerships and high-quality acquisitions.

Management Team

Peter Wall - Non- Executive Chairman

Peter Wall is a corporate lawyer and has been a partner at Steinepreis Paganin, a Perth-based corporate law firm, since July 2005. He has a wide range of experience in all forms of commercial and corporate law, with a particular focus on medical cannabis, resources, equity capital markets and mergers and acquisitions. He also has significant experience in dealing with cross-border transactions.

Wall graduated from the University of Western Australia in 1998 with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce (Finance). He has also completed a Masters of Applied Finance and Investment with FINSIA.

Winton Willesee - Non-Executive Director

Winton Willesee is an experienced company director and brings a broad range of skills and experience in strategy, company development, corporate governance, company public listings, merger and acquisition transactions and corporate finance. He has considerable experience with ASX listed and other companies over a broad range of industries, having been involved with many successful ventures from early-stage through to large capital development projects.

Willesee holds formal qualifications in economics, finance, accounting, education and governance. He is a fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a member of CPA Australia and a fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia/Chartered Secretary.

Doug Halley - Non-Executive Director

Doug Halley is an experienced company director and has served for 30 years as CFO or CEO in several significant and successful commercial enterprises and investment banks. His executive experience had a heavy emphasis on corporate strategy, treasury, financial management, M&A and business development. As a professional director, Halley has developed risk management and governance expertise. He has a strong background in IPO and start-ups and a reputation for innovation, perseverance and achieving solutions and results.

Halley has a Bachelor of Commerce, Master of Business Administration and is a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Michael Curtis - Non-Executive Director

Michael Curtis resides in Toronto, Canada and is an experienced former investment banker and private equity executive. He is an active cannabis sector executive, having recently served as VP of Corporate Finance of Dosecann Inc. and Managing Partner of Parallax Ventures Inc. Curtis was previously the COO and Director of Embark Health Inc. and remains a consultant to Embark Health Inc.

Curtis has a Master of Business Administration from the University of New Brunswick, Bachelor of Sciences (Honors) from McMaster University.

Jim Hallam - CFO & Corporate Secretary

Jim Hallam has over 30 years of experience in the investment management industry with alternative asset fund managers in Australia and overseas, including Hastings Funds Management and Annuity Australia. His roles include acting as responsible manager, investment manager and Chief Financial Officer within alternative asset fund managers.

Hallam has a Bachelor of Commerce in Economics, is a member of the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand and a fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia.

HGV:AU

Zelira Therapeutics Ltd a global leader in the research and development of clinically validated cannabinoid medicines, is pleased to announce the US launch of the Zelira Dermatology Business’ first product line, RAF FIVE ™ through its dermatology subsidiary Ilera Derm LLC . The five-product RAF FIVE ™ line consists of the Wash Away Gel Cleanser Acne Treatment, Spot On Acne Treatment, Kick Off Hydrating Lotion …

Zelira Therapeutics Ltd (ASX: ZLD) (OTCQB: ZLDAF), a global leader in the research and development of clinically validated cannabinoid medicines, is pleased to announce the US launch of the Zelira Dermatology Business’ first product line, RAF FIVE ™ through its dermatology subsidiary Ilera Derm LLC (“Zelira Dermatology”).

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map of australia with cannabis leaves
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What are the top ASX cannabis stocks of 2022 so far by share price performance? Here's a look at the biggest gainers in the space.

Click here to read the previous top ASX cannabis stocks article.

Australia's cannabis industry has had ups and downs in recent years.

Cannabis, which can be cultivated for medicinal and scientific purposes in the country, takes up a particularly tricky and political pocket of the healthcare sector, but continues to generate investor interest.

How have Australian cannabis stocks performed in the first few months of 2022? Below the Investing News Network has gathered the top ASX cannabis stocks year-to-date. The following information was correct as of April 4, 2022, and was collected using TradingView's stock screener. Read on to learn more.


1. Botanix Pharmaceuticals

Year-to-date gain: 67.86 percent; market cap: AU$87.58 million; current share price: AU$0.09

Botanix Pharmaceuticals (ASX:BOT) is a dermatology-focused company whose work is centered on developing topical treatments for a slew of skin problems, including acne, rosacea, atopic dermatitis and microbial infections. Its pipeline includes three advanced clinical programs using the anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects of synthetic CBD as a topical treatment for various skin diseases.

Botanix is on track with many of its goals for this year. According to its latest quarterly activities report, the company's canine atopic dermatitis program, which was launched in September 2021, is set to finish enrolment by the end of the first quarter. Additionally, preclinical work for Botanix's BTX 1801 antimicrobial program is complete, and a clinical study is planned to start by the end of Q1.

2. Cronos Australia

Year-to-date gain: 47.5 percent; market cap: AU$156.92 million; current share price: AU$0.29

A spinoff of Cronos Group (NASDAQ:CRON,TSX:CRON), Cronos Australia (ASX:CAU) is a domestic firm looking for opportunities in the medical cannabis space. It holds a controlling stake in Cannadoc Health in Australia and has also pursued business ventures in the larger Asia Pacific region.

As part of its annual report to shareholders, Chairman Shane Tanner and CEO Rodney Cocks said the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have continued to affect the cannabis industry at large, including some aspects of the Cronos Australia business. However, they expect to see things turn around in 2022.

In its latest quarterly activities report, Cronos Australia highlighted the successful completion of its merger with CDA Health, describing it as a "key milestone," and reported that its medical cannabis sales for the first half of the 2022 fiscal year exceeded sales for the entire 2021 fiscal year.

3. Hygrovest

Year-to-date gain: 3.39 percent; market cap: AU$14.25 million; current share price: AU$0.06

Hygrovest (ASX:HGV), formerly MMJ Group Holdings, describes itself as a specialist investment company. It has a wide range of cannabis investments, including healthcare products, technology, infrastructure, logistics, processing, cultivation, equipment, retail and research and development.

Among other companies, it has invested in Harvest One Cannabis (TSXV:HVT,OTCQB:HRVOF), which develops health and wellness products, and BevCanna Enterprises (CSE:BEV,OTCQB:BVNNF), which offers a range of traditional and cannabis-infused beverages and nutraceuticals.

Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time news updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Marlee John, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

Highlights: Peak Processing Solutions subsidiary of Althea Group Holdings has entered into agreements with BBCCC, Inc., The Boston Beer Company and WeedMD Rx Inc., a subsidiary of Entourage Health Corp. Under the product development agreement, Peak will provide research and development services including laboratory support and the testing of various product formulations and recipes, for the new line of BBC products …

Highlights:

  • Peak Processing Solutions (Peak), subsidiary of Althea Group Holdings (ASX: AGH) (Althea) has entered into agreements with BBCCC, Inc., The Boston Beer Company (NYSE: SAM) (‘BBC’), and WeedMD Rx Inc., a subsidiary of Entourage Health Corp. (‘Entourage’)
  • Under the product development agreement, Peak will provide research and development services including laboratory support and the testing of various product formulations and recipes, for the new line of BBC products
  • BBC will provide Peak with funding of up to USD$2m for capital improvements associated with the development project. In addition, Peak will receive a minimum of USD$285,000 for each year of the Term of the agreement (totalling USD$1.42m )
  • Under the 5 year supply and manufacturing agreement, Peak is the exclusive manufacturer of all cannabis beverages produced or sold in Canada under BBC branding, for the term of the agreement
  • Entourage will be responsible for distribution and sales of the cannabis-infused beverages in Canada

Peak Processing Solutions, a subsidiary of Althea Group Holdings Limited (ASX: AGH) (‘Peak’ or ‘the Company’) is a leading developer, manufacturer, and distributor of cannabis infused edible, topical, and concentrate products is pleased to announce that the Company has entered into agreements with WeedMD Rx Inc., a subsidiary of (TSXV: ENTG) (OTCQX: WDDMF) (‘Entourage’) and BBCCC, Inc., a subsidiary of the Boston Beer Company Inc. (NYSE: SAM) (‘BBC’).

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Hygrovest



Hygrovest Limited (ASX:HGV) ("HGV") is an Australian-listed specialist investment company which concentrates on producing capital growth for shareholders over the medium term from investments in listed and unlisted equities and other financial assets.

HGV agrees to divest its investment in Entourage Health above current book value

HGV has agreed to support proposed changes to the terms of the unsecured convertible debentures issued by Entourage Health Corp (ENT or the Company) which would allow HGV to divest its investment in ENT convertible debentures (the Notes).

The attached release by ENT details the changes proposed by the Company which would allow HGV to complete the divestment of ENT which bring forward the maturity date from 25 September 2022 to 30 June 2022 and reduce the redemption percentage from 100% to 60% of face value (the Note Proposals).

The Company has announced that a meeting of ENT Noteholders will be held in late June 2022 to consider the Note Proposals. HGV has signed a voting agreement to vote in favour of the changes. If the meeting of ENT Noteholders approves the amendments, ENT will redeem HGV’s Notes for CAD3.6m plus accrued interest on or around 30 June 2022 which is a premium to HGV’s book value of CAD2.5m as at 30 April 2022.

On the basis that ENT Noteholders approve the resolutions, HGV will have generated a loss of 18% on the original investment (after inclusion of cash interest received). Whilst the investment in HGV’s Notes has been well below expectations at the time of initial investment, it should be noted that the return is materially above that for the listed Canadian cannabis sector which has declined approximately 70%1 since January 2020.

The divestment was negotiated by HGV’s asset manager, Parallax Ventures Inc, on behalf of HGV.

“The divestment of HGV’s investment in ENT at a significant premium to our book value is an important step in realising HGV’s underperforming cannabis investments and applying those funds to sectors which have higher growth prospects” said Mr Wall, HGV’s Chairman.

HGV made its initial investment in ENT in September 2019 and now has a current book value of CAD2.5m comprising:

  1. CAD6m in 8.5% unsecured Convertible Debenture units issued by ENT which HGV has the option to convert into 3.75m shares by the maturity date of 25 September 2022. The debenture units have preference over ordinary shares with interest paid to HGV on a six-monthly basis. The market value of the notes is calculated by multiplying the CAD6m by the market price divided by 100.
  2. Listed Warrants that allow HGV to acquire an additional 3.75m shares for CAD1.80 each by 25 September 2022.
About HGV

Hygrovest Limited (ASX:HGV) ("HGV") (ABN 91 601 236 417) is an Australian-listed specialist investment company which concentrates on producing capital growth for shareholders over the medium term from investments in listed and unlisted equities and other financial assets.

Important Notice

This announcement contains reference to certain intentions, expectations, future plans, strategy and prospects of HGV. Those intentions, expectations, future plans, strategy and prospects may or may not be achieved. They are based on certain assumptions, which may not be met or on which views may differ and may be affected by known and unknown risks. The performance and operations of HGV may be influenced by a number of factors, many of which are outside the control of HGV. No representation or warranty, express or implied, is made by HGV, or any of its directors, officers, employees, advisers or agents that any intentions, expectations or plans will be achieved either totally or partially or that any particular rate of return will be achieved. Given the risks and uncertainties that may cause HGV’s actual future results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expected, planned or intended, recipients should not place undue reliance on these intentions, expectations, future plans, strategy and prospects. HGV does not warrant or represent that the actual results, performance or achievements will be as expected, planned or intended. Nothing in this material should be construed as either an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy or sell securities. It does not include all available information and should not be used in isolation as a basis to invest in HGV. This document does not constitute any part of any offer to sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy, any securities in the United States or to, or for the account or benefit of any “US person” as defined in Regulation S under the US Securities Act of 1993 (“Securities Act”). HGV’s shares have not been, and will not be, registered under the Securities Act or the securities laws of any state or other jurisdiction of the United States, and may not be offered or sold in the United States or to any US person without being so registered or pursuant to an exemption from registration including an exemption for qualified institutional buyers.

This article includes content from Hygrovest Limited (ASX:HGV), licensed for the purpose of publishing on Investing News Australia. This article does not constitute financial product advice. It is your responsibility to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any information provided here. Please refer to our full disclaimer here.
HGV:AU
Winsome Resources CEO Chris Evans

Winsome Resources CEO Chris Evans said, “Canada and the US are working feverishly to develop an internal battery materials supply chain and we think we're going to play a critical role in that.”

Winsome Resources CEO Chris Evans: Sustainable Hardrock Lithium Opportunities in Quebec youtu.be


Winsome Resources (ASX:WR1) CEO Chris Evans joined the Investing News Network to discuss the company and its Cancet lithium project in Quebec, Canada.

"We listed on the ASX on November 30, 2021," he explained. "We're lithium focused but based in Canada, and we've been pretty successful in the last six months — our share price has done well. I think I've been putting this down to the success factors which we possess as a company, including the fact that we're into lithium at a moment with high demand. Any mining company that's associated with lithium has tended to do well.

“Our assets are in Quebec, a fantastic mining jurisdiction for all sorts of reasons. Also, being listed on the ASX — Australian investors tend to like early stage plays a bit better. They've certainly woken up to the electric vehicle and lithium revolution that's occurring in the world. And it's a pleasure having the assets in Canada.”


Next, Evans got into specifics about the company's flagship project. “The Cancet project is our flagship, in the James Bay region of Quebec. All our projects are hard-rock lithium; that's digging the rocks out of the ground and concentrating the lithium in them. Then it gets converted into the final product, which is lithium carbonate or hydroxide, that then goes into electric vehicle batteries,” he explained.

“Cancet’s had about 5,500 metres of drilling done on it historically, so we know that there's a great deposit of lithium at fantastic grades. It outcrops on the surface, the lithium-containing spodumene from the pegmatite rock, where we have 3.7 percent lithium oxide over a 17 metre interval from the surface at our most successful drill hole. We just completed 2,000 metres of drilling ourselves, increasing our knowledge of the orebody that's there, and also looking for extensions to the orebody. We've got 395 claims, and our drilling and exploration is only over about 15 of the claims. So we've got a lot further to look here and a lot more to develop.”

As for supply location, and the company's relationship with the international market, Evans said, “We think it's fantastic for us, and our shareholders, that we have assets in Quebec. Roughly 50 percent of the world's hard-rock lithium comes from Australia, where it’s mined and concentrated. The problem is that final conversion into lithium carbonate or hydroxide all occurs at the moment in China ... lithium is on the critical minerals list in Canada, the US and Australia, and Canada and the US are working feverishly to develop an internal battery materials supply chain. We think we're going to play a critical role in that.”

Elaborating on the sustainability industry that drives the battery revolution, he said, “(Nearly) all power in Quebec is generated by hydroelectricity and renewable forms of electricity. That’s very important, because the mining and concentration process for lithium products traditionally produces a large carbon footprint, because it's energy intensive. The EU, from 2024, has mandated that all batteries are labeled with the carbon footprint of all the materials that are contained within them. Then, by about 2026, there's specific targets that batteries have to meet in order to be sold in the EU. If you don't have a renewable source of energy to produce your lithium products that go into those batteries, it's going to severely restrict your markets — and that's another bonus for us being in Quebec.”

Evans said that Winsome Resources’ approach is to develop a mine itself, rather than selling or partnering. “We will approach this as if we are going to be developing the Cancet project, and producing lithium ourselves, in four or so years. And I think that'll best serve our shareholders.” With regards to other ways the company could benefit investors, Evans said, “Being listed on the ASX, and having access to a lot of capital, I think there's a great opportunity for us to acquire other projects in Canada. We're about to start our summer exploration. And we're on the lookout for a new project. So I think the good news is really to come.”

Watch the full interview of Winsome Resources CEO Chris Evans above.

Disclaimer: This interview is sponsored by Winsome Resources (ASX:WR1). This interview provides information that was sourced by the Investing News Network (INN) and approved by Winsome Resources in order to help investors learn more about the company. Winsome Resources is a client of INN. The company’s campaign fees pay for INN to create and update this interview.

INN does not provide investment advice and the information on this profile should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any security. INN does not endorse or recommend the business, products, services or securities of any company profiled.

The information contained here is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of securities. Readers should conduct their own research for all information publicly available concerning the company. Prior to making any investment decision, it is recommended that readers consult directly with Winsome Resources and seek advice from a qualified investment advisor.

This interview may contain forward-looking statements including but not limited to comments regarding the timing and content of upcoming work programs, receipt of property titles, etc. Forward-looking statements address future events and conditions and therefore involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those currently anticipated in such statements. The issuer relies upon litigation protection for forward-looking statements. Investing in companies comes with uncertainties as market values can fluctuate.

WR1:AU

Where are the silver mines in Australia? You might be surprised to learn that the country is home to one of the world’s top primary silver producers.

Mining is a big part of Australia’s history, and it continues to shape the country’s economy and position in the world today. The nation is one of the world’s top producers and exporters of resources, with coal, uranium, copper and gold being some of its best-known commodities.

Australia is also a key producer of silver — it was the world’s fifth-largest producer of the metal in 2021, tied with Russia, putting out 1,300 MT. Interestingly, most of Australia's silver is produced from silver-bearing galena, but some is also produced from copper and gold mining.

Refined silver comes mainly from the Port Pirie lead smelter and refinery in South Australia, though silver is also refined at gold refineries in Perth, Kalgoorlie and Melbourne.


But where are the silver mines in Australia, exactly? While it’s interesting to know what types of deposits the precious metal is found in, many investors want to know what companies are producing silver and where their mines are located geographically. Read on to find the answers to those questions.

Where are the silver mines in Australia?

Silver has played a role in Australia since the mid-1800s — Wheal Gawler, Australia’s first metal mine, was a silver-lead mine developed in South Australia in the 1840s. And that’s not Australia’s only early silver-mining operation — the Broken Hill deposit in New South Wales and the Mount Isa deposit in Queensland are two other early Australian silver discoveries.

Broken Hill, a lead-zinc-silver deposit, was discovered in 1883 by German immigrant Charles Rasp, and the Broken Hill Proprietary Company was born in 1885; it ultimately merged in 2001 with another mining giant, Billiton, to form BHP Billiton (ASX:BHP,NYSE:BHP,LSE:BLT). BHP Billiton is no longer involved with Broken Hill, but ore is still being extracted there today. Perilya now runs the southern and northern operations.

For its part, Mount Isa was discovered in 1923 by John Campbell Miles, and like Broken Hill is still producing today. It was acquired by Glencore (LSE:GLEN) in 2013 and in addition to silver is also a producer of zinc.

These major early Australian silver discoveries are not the country’s only sources of silver. Other silver mines in Australia include Cannington, one of the world’s top primary silver producers. It’s a fly-in, fly-out mining and processing operation that is owned by South32 (ASX:S32,LSE:S32), a diversified resource company spun out from BHP Billiton in 2015. Cannington also produces lead and zinc.

Australia holds the McArthur River mine as well, which opened in 1995 and is owned by Glencore subsidiary McArthur River Mining. The mine is one of the world’s largest zinc-lead-silver mines, and is located in Australia’s Northern Territory.

Glencore’s 2021 annual report claims total silver production reached 31.519 million ounces for the year, representing a 4 percent drop from 2020. That includes 625,000 ounces from McArthur River.

The Century mine, which previously belonged to MMG (HKEX:1208), shut its doors at the end of 2015, but was a major producer of zinc (and silver) until that time. It was reopened in mid-2018 by New Century Resources (ASX:NCZ) and the company says it now has an estimated annual production capacity of 264,000 tonnes of zinc and 3 million ounces of silver.

Independence Group (ASX:IGO) also produces silver, along with copper and zinc, at its Jaguar operation in Western Australia. Gold producer Silver Lake Resources (ASX:SLR) owns some projects with silver reserves as well. As you can see, there are and have been many silver mines in Australia.

Future silver mines in Australia?

In addition to being home to a slew of large silver mines, Australia also plays host to many companies that are exploring and developing silver projects. Below are a few that have made recent progress.

Please let us know in the comments if we’ve forgotten to mention any Australia-focused silver companies. All companies listed had market caps of at least AU$5 million on May 19, 2022.

Argent Minerals (ASX:ARD) — Argent Minerals’ main asset is its 100-percent-owned Kempfield polymetallic project in New South Wales. In May 2018, the company announced an updated resource estimate for the asset — its silver equivalent contained metal now stands at an estimated 100 million silver equivalent ounces at 120 g/t silver equivalent; that’s approximately double the previous estimate.

In total the company has three projects, with all of them being in New South Wales.

Investigator Resources (ASX:IVR) — Investigator Resources is advancing silver, copper and gold deposits in South Australia. Currently its properties include the Peterlumbo/Paris silver project, the Eyre Peninsula and Stuart Shelf projects and the Northern Yorke Peninsula projects.

The total resource for Paris stands at an estimated 18.8 million tonnes at 88 g/t silver and 0.52 percent lead for 53.1 million ounces of contained silver and 97,600 tonnes of contained lead (at a cut off of 30 g/t silver). The indicated component is 12.7 million tonnes of silver (95 g/t) and represents 73 percent of the total estimated resource ounces.

Horizon Minerals (ASX:HRZ) — Horizon Minerals owns the Nimbus silver-zinc project in Western Australia. Nimbus has a high-grade silver-zinc resource estimate of 255,898 tonnes at 773 g/t silver and 13 percent zinc; the total Nimbus resource stands at 1.21 million tonnes at 52 g/t silver, 0.9 percent zinc and 0.2 g/t gold.

Silver Mines (ASX:SVL) bills itself as a leading Australian silver exploration company, and has spent a considerable amount of time acquiring Australian silver projects. Those include Malachite Resources’ (ASX:MAR) Conrad project and Kingsgate Consolidated’s (ASX:KCN) Bowdens silver project.

While the company’s main focus has been on the Webbs silver project in New South Wales, the Bowdens project represents the largest undeveloped silver project in Australia, and Silver Mines is working to get the project through the feasibility, environmental impact statement and permitting stages.

In a 2018 report, the feasibility study demonstrated an average silver production of 3.4 million tonnes per annum for the project, with 5.4 million during the first three years of operation. Estimations also included 6,900 tonnes of zinc and 5,100 tonnes of lead.

This is an updated version of an article first published by the Investing News Network in 2018.

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Securities Disclosure: I, Ryan Sero, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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