THOR Rare Earth Project Optioned to Selten Metal Corp.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia, November 29, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – NexOptic Technology Corp. (“NexOptic”) (TSX VENTURE: NXO) (OTCQB: NXOPF) (FSE: E3O1) announces that it has entered into a letter of intent (“LOI”) with Selten Metal Corp. (“Selten Metal” or “Selten,” and together with NexOptic, the “Companies”) whereby Selten Metal can earn a 100% interest in NexOptic’s wholly owned, THOR Heavy & Light Rare Earth Element Project (the “THOR Project”).
Located in southern Nevada, THOR is 17 miles from what was once the largest rare-earth element (“REE”) mine in the world, Mountain Pass. Mountain Pass originally opened in 1952 and would reopen in 2017 as the largest REE mine in the Western Hemisphere, and the only REE mine in North America. Contributing 15.8% to the global REE supply in 2020 (MP Materials, NYSE: MP), Mountain Pass is primarily a light rare earth deposit whereas historic (non 43-101 compliant) surface and drilled assays discovered on the THOR Project between 2009 and 2011 have reached up to 18% of their composition in heavy rare earths.
Consisting of approximately 2184 hectares in southern Nevada, including roughly 1280 hectares that have been recently staked by NexOptic, the THOR Project was historically explored for heavy and light rare earth elements by Elissa Resources Ltd. (“Elissa”) between 2009 and 2011. Of the 17 rare earth elements, 14 have been discovered at the THOR Project on surface and in historic drilling. In 2016, Elissa completed a change of business in accordance with the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange and changed its name to NexOptic Technology Corp. (see NexOptic news release February 19, 2016).
Subject to execution of a definitive option agreement, Selten Metal intends to use historical technical and scientific information obtained from NexOptic to develop its plans for exploration and, if warranted, development of the THOR Project.
The reader is cautioned that all historical data on the THOR Project referenced herein, is no longer 43-101 compliant and should be interpreted as such and should not be relied upon. Jim Guilinger and a Qualified Person have reviewed and approved the technical data reported in this news release as was provided to them by NexOptic Technology Corp. Mr. Guilinger is the senior co-author of a 43-101 report on THOR as commissioned by NexOptic.
About Rare Earths
Known as the lanthanide series on the periodic table, these are seventeen chemically related minerals, collectively called rare earths. Although these rare earth elements can be found broadly dissipated all over the world, what makes them “rare” is finding enough concentration of the metals in a single location making their extraction viable. With 90% of all rare earth processing, 90% of global rare earth magnet production, and 80% of the total global rare earth supply currently coming from China, and with exponential demand for rare earth elements expected as we work to build a sustainable future, other countries have now realized the necessity of securing their own domestic and regional sources of these critical rare earth elements. The value of global rare earth oxide consumption is expected to rise five-fold by 2030, from US $3 billion in 2020 to US $16 billion.
Critical to the climate economy, including electric vehicles and wind power, rare earth elements are increasingly used in the manufacturing of countless everyday products that we all benefit from daily. Global shortages by 2030 of neodymium alone will be roughly the amount needed for some 25 to 30 million electric vehicle motors, not to mention wind power.
The Proposed Terms of the Transaction
Pursuant to the LOI, NexOptic and Selten Metal intend to negotiate a definitive agreement for an option in favour of Selten to acquire up to a 100% interest in the THOR Project (the “Option”). In order to acquire an initial 75% interest in and to the THOR Project (the “Initial Option”), Selten must (a) make a cash payment of $1,100,000 to NexOptic on the execution of the definitive option agreement, (b) upon the date of any listing of Selten, or its successor, on a recognized stock exchange in Canada (the “Listing Date”), issue to NexOptic such number of common shares in its capital as will represent 9.5% of the issued and outstanding Selten shares post issuance, (c) issue to NexOptic an additional 500,000 shares on the date which is 12 months following the Listing Date, and (d) issue to NexOptic a further additional 500,000 shares on the date which is 24 months following the Listing Date. If a Listing Date does not occur within 24 months of the date of the definitive option agreement, the Option will terminate.
Upon the exercise of the Initial Option, Selten will be granted the further option to acquire the remaining 25% interest in the THOR Project (the “Second Option”), by issuing to NexOptic an additional number of Selten shares in its capital equal to 9.5% of the issued and outstanding Selten shares post-issuance. Issuance will be made within 48 months following the Listing Date, at the discretion of Selten.
In the event Selten fails to exercise the Second Option as provided above, Selten and NexOptic will form a joint venture on the THOR Project with the initial participating interests being 75% and 25% respectively and Selten acting as the initial operator.
The definitive option agreement will provide for NexOptic to have the right to nominate one (1) director to the board of Selten.
The THOR Project is subject to a 2% net smelter returns royalty held by a private entity, of which each 1% may be purchased by NexOptic at any time for $500,000, such that the entire royalty may be acquired for $1,000,000.
What You Need to Know About Selten Metal Corp
German for “rare,” the word “Selten” represents the Company’s desire to become a leading producer of heavy and light rare earth elements in the United States—as US sourced rare earths are becoming increasingly critical to the climate economy, and for global geopolitical stability. For more information visit www.seltenmetal.com
What You Need to Know About NexOptic
NexOptic is an innovative imaging AI company headquartered in Vancouver, Canada with operations in Seoul, South Korea, offering world-leading patented and patent pending AI solutions for imaging known as ALIIS™ (All Light Intelligent Imaging Solutions). NexOptic simultaneously influences the imaging and AI industries and is a Preferred Partner in the NVIDIA Partner Network, a member of the Arm® AI Partner Program, and a member of the Qualcomm® Platform Solutions Ecosystem. For more information, visit www.nexoptic.com
This news release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information (together, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable securities laws. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, are forward-looking statements. Generally, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of terminology such as “plans,” “expects,” “estimates,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “believes” or variations of such words, or statements that certain actions, events or results “may,” “could,” “would,” “might,” “will be taken,” “occur,” or “be achieved.” Forward-looking statements in this news release include, without limitation, statements respecting the LOI, the parties’ intention to enter into a definitive agreement respecting the Option, expectations regarding demand for REE, and the plans regarding exploration on the THOR Project. Forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and other factors disclosed under the heading “Risk Factors” and elsewhere in NexOptic’s filings with Canadian securities regulators, that could cause actual results, performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although NexOptic believes that the assumptions and factors used in preparing these forward-looking statements are reasonable based upon the information currently available to management as of the date hereof, actual results and developments may differ materially from those contemplated by these statements. Readers are therefore cautioned not to place undue reliance on these statements, which only apply as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such events will occur in the disclosed times frames or at all. Except where required by applicable law, the Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.
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