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NovX21 Inc. – Low-Cost, Highly Efficient Recovery of Platinum Group Metals

NovX21 Inc.


NovX21 Inc. (TSXV:NOV) is a green technology company whose mission is to change the way we recover precious metals. Its innovative, clean, sustainable technology recovers and recycles the precious metals in catalytic converters, a key component of vehicle pollution control systems. Thanks to its process, NovX21 is helping to create economic value by giving discarded systems new life.

NovX21’s technology is characterized by a quick, clean, energy efficient, affordable precious metals recovery and recycling process that recovers three of the platinum-group metals, platinum, palladium and rhodium, commonly called “PGMs”, as well as the catalytic converters’ ceramic substrate.

NovX21 also holds the mineral rights to six properties in Quebec, namely the Ménarik, Lac Ewart, Courville,  Fabre, Tavernier and Vauquelin properties.

Investment Highlights

  • NovX21 owns 100% of the patented process IP with no royalties
  • The patented technology is proven with over 97% recovery of PGMs and other precious metals
  • The 50 TPY demonstration plant is permitted and generating revenues; planned 200 TPY PGM Recovery Plant could generate C$22-29M in Revenues per year with gross profit margins of 33%
  • Low CAPEX (less than C$10M) to build 500 TPY plant; payback is in 9 months
  • The plant is scalable and fully operational in 9-12 months
  • Green Efficient Technology; Closed loop process that generates low emissions and low energy demand
  • Usable by products – in line with environmentally friendly mega trends around the globe

Key Project

PGM Recovery Plant Project—Quebec, Canada

Platinum Group Metals are geologically, technically and chemically hard to extract. NovX21 Inc. has developed a process for the recovery of PGM and other precious metals from refractory recycled material and from PGM-rich concentrates recycled from automobile catalytic converters. The NovX21 patented chlorination process that yields more than 97% recoveries of PGMs, is much less capital extensive and operates at a more efficient pace than conventional smelters. The finished product is fine 35-μm metallic powder containing no glass or carbon. No special preparation is needed to process the ceramic unit containing the PGM. The Company’s 50-tons- per-year (TPY) demonstration plant near Quebec City, Canada, has been running for more than two years (2011 until now) on a semi-continuous basis with excellent results.

The Company plans to build a 500 TPY PGM Recovery Plant in Thetford Mine, Quebec in 2014. An equity financing of $3 million was completed in January 2014 to kickstart the detailed engineering and construction of the chrolinators.


Overview of the dry chlorination equipment

NovX21’s innovative process optimizes the recovery of resources while reducing the environmental impact, the recovery time and the energy usage by more than 90%. The qualities and properties of the technology are such that a plant could be installed in any country that can supply at least 500,000 salvaged vehicle-motors, equivalent to 500 tons/year of catalytic converters.  This volume allows the plant to operate around the clock at a Conversion Speed that would generate excellent gross profit margins.


Crusher and preparation step of the catalytic converters’ powder

The plant consumes very little energy, about 4 kW per hour per chrolinator. Its footprint is small Gaseous emissions consist of air, moisture and carbon dioxide from calcination. The processing plant can be constructed quickly, requires minimal operator training and can be remotely controlled and supervised.


Ion-exchange towers for extraction of precious metals

NovX21 owns 100% of its PGM Recovery Process with no royalties and its patents have been issued in the U.S. in 2011 and in Canada in 2012.


Control room allowing operators to follow and control all the process’ steps

The Company’s 50 TPY demonstration plant, located near Quebec City, in St. Augustin-de-Desmaures, is permitted and generates revenues. The planned 500 TPY plant could generate C$ 22-29M in Revenues per year with gross profit margins of 33%. Low CAPEX is required to build the PGM Recovery Plant with payback through revenues projected in 9 months. The plant is scalable and capable of becoming fully operational in 9 – 12 months.

PGM market evolving

The global PGM markets are extremely tight, controlled by a small number of players in an environment further stressed by the current slowdown in new mine development by major mining companies. This scenario will exacerbate supply shortages in the future, supporting higher metal prices. Where production becomes overly expensive, recycling is the hidden value in PGM plays, especially in North America, Europe and Asia.

South Africa, endowed with half of the world’s PGM resources and reserves, produces 75% of the global resource from smelting processes with high energy costs. The issue of securing a safe supply is becoming more obvious in a market where production is politically unstable. Other PGM resources coming from Russian stockpiles are hitting bottom lows. Russian PGM exports are at their lowest at a time when explosive growth in automobiles and trucks worldwide require catalytic converters to produce lower gas emission in order to comply with new environmental regulations.

The world of PGM use is changing its center of gravity: it is shifting both East and West away from the U.S., thus the importance of securing a low geopolitical risk resource of PGMs—such as from recycled materials— in North America and limiting the dependence on South Africa.

Benefits of NovX21 Technology

“NovX21 is 21st century, smelters is 19th century” – Jack Lifton, a sector expert on PGMs and consultant to NovX21

Conventional PGM Recovery vs. Prototype NovX21 PGM Process

Highly corrosive due to strong acid used Average recoveries above 97%
Energy intensive (high-temp smelting) Weak acid concentration (reusable/recyclable)
Large feedstock inventory Low gas emission (CO2 & H2O vapor)
Long process cycle with multiple steps Low energy consumption
Revenue generated in 24-32 weeks Quick processing time (fewer steps)
Large Plants (high capex) Revenues generated in 7-8 weeks
Significant environmental impact Modular, inexpensive facility
Overseas processing, expensive logistics Minimum environmental impact
Domestic recycling, transportation advantage


NovX21 Inc. has developed a chemical approach of dry chlorination for the recovery of platinum group metals from recycled catalytic converters. The patented chlorination process transforms refractory recycled material and PGM-rich concentrates recycled from automobile catalytic converters into a fine 35-μm metallic powder in a matter of days. The technology optimizes the recovery of PGM resources, reduces the environmental impact, and lowers energy usage by more than 90%.

The Company has a 50 ton per year or TYP demonstration plant, near Quebec City, which yields very high recoveries of PGMs at a rate of 97% and more, at lower costs and higher efficiency than conventional smelters. In keeping with its mission to sustainably recover recycled precious metals for use in the automobile industry, NovX21 Inc. plans to build a 500 TPY PGM Recovery Plant in Thetford Mine, Quebec that could generate gross profit margins of 33% for a return on investment in 9 months. The low-cost clean technology plant requires low CAPEX investment, is scalable and fully operational in less than one year.

NovX21 Inc. also holds the mineral rights to six properties with a main focus on the Menarik property in the James Bay area of Quebec, Canada.


Sylvain Boulanger, Ing. – CEO and Chairman of the Board
Mr. Boulanger is President of NovX21 Inc. and has managed the Company since 2011. He graduated from École Polytechnique in Montreal in 1977 with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Electrical Engineering) and worked for more than 20 years in manufacturing, holding intermediate and senior management positions with General Motors, Paccar and Nike. He subsequently moved into supply chain management at the ALDO Group, La Vie En Rose and GENCO Distribution Systems, where he was Vice President for 10 years.

Fayçal Salek, CPA, CA – Interim CFO
Mr. Faycal Salek is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA). He worked at Petrie Raymond, Charted Accountants – LLP, as a Director between January 2002 and June 2011.From July 2011 to March 2012, he was Vice-President Finance with Hitlab inc., a music and social media company. Since April 2012, he is pursuing his consultancy practice of offering counselling services to small and mid-sized public corporations.

Jack Lifton – Consultant
Jack Lifton is a Founding Principal of Technology Metals Research, LLC. He is also a consultant, author, and lecturer on the market fundamentals of the technology metals, the term that he coined to describe those strategic rare metals whose electronic properties make our technological society possible. These include the rare earths, lithium and most of the rare metals. The technology metals include the Platinum Group Metal.

Educated as a physical chemist, specializing in high-temperature metallurgy, Jack was first a researcher before becoming both a marketing and manufacturing executive. Finally, he became a metal trader specializing in the field of technology metals and of rare metals.

Today, after 48 years of industry involvement, he advises both OEM high tech industry and the global institutional-investment community, on the natural resource issues that impact either a proposed business model or a high-volume manufacturing plan for the mass market.

Jack is a Senior Fellow of the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security.

John LeBoutillier – Chairman of the Board
John LeBoutillier, C. M. is currently Chairman of the Board of Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc. and of Groupe Deschênes Inc., Vice Chairman of TechnoCentre éolien Gaspésie–Les Îles and a board member of a number of public issuers, such as Mazarin Inc., Semafo Inc. and Stornoway Diamond Corporation. Mr. LeBoutillier was President and Chief Executive Officer of Iron Ore Company of Canada from 1996 to 2000 and President and Chief Executive Officer of Sidbec-Dosco Inc. (currently known as ArcelorMittal Montréal Inc.) from 1983 to 1996. He was also a member of many industrial associations at Canadian and international levels. He sat on the Commission d’études sur les services de santé et les services sociaux (Clair Commission) in 2000 and the Canadian Democracy and Corporate Accountability Commission in 2001. John LeBoutillier has a law degree from Université Laval in Québec City and an MBA from the University of Western Ontario (currently known as the Richard Ivey School of Business).

André Boulanger – Member of the Board
André Boulanger, MESc, is President of Hydro-Québec TransÉnergie, where he manages an electrical network in North America. He was also President of Hydro-Québec, Distribution Québec, from 2003 to 2011, where he was responsible for the reliability of the electrical network, its distribution and supply and demand planning for 3.9 million consumers. Prior to such functions, Mr. Boulanger was a senior executive at Gaz Métro Inc. from 1983 to 2003. He has been a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors since 2010 and is a board member of Northeast Power Coordination Council Inc. (New York) and Chairman of the board of Cedars Rapids Ltd., as well as board member of the Cancer Institute of Montréal and other economic development and cultural organizations. Mr. Boulanger studied at a doctorate level at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, United States) and has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from the Université Laval in Québec City.

René Branchaud – Member of the Board
René Branchaud holds an LLB from Université Laval obtained in 1982. He has been a lawyer since 1983 and is a partner of the law firm Lavery, de Billy, L.L.P. He practices in the areas of securities law, mergers and acquisitions and corporate law. Mr. Branchaud serves on the board of directors and is corporate secretary of several public companies. He also serves on several committees of the board of directors, including corporate governance committees and ad hoc committees created for specific transactions (mergers, takeovers). In addition, he advises directors who sit on ad hoc committees.

Jean-Paul Schaack – Member of the Board
Jean-Paul Schaack, retired since 2008, spent most of his career from 1982 to 2007 in the steel industry with ArcelorMittal Canada or its predecessor companies. As Manager and later Vice President, Planning, of that company, he was instrumental in the creation of four joint venture subsidiaries of which he also became a director. Later, he also became responsible for Purchasing and Environment where his focus was principally on the efficient purchase and optimal usage of raw materials and energy. During this period, he participated in several due diligence studies and acquisitions. He also sat on the board of industrial associations of energy intensive companies. Prior to joining the steel industry, from 1972 to 1982, Jean-Paul Schaack was a consultant with SNC Inc., where he participated in numerous feasibility studies of industrial and power projects in Canada and overseas. He obtained his engineering degree from the École des Mines de Paris (France) and a master’s degree in Management Sciences from the University of Waterloo (Ontario).