Next Graphite, Inc. (OTCBB:GPNE) is a development stage company focussed on re-launching the previously operational Aukam Graphite Mine in the Republic of Namibia. Although Next Graphite has yet to complete a formal mineral estimate, it anticipates that the historically producing property could still hold over 4 million tons of natural, high-grade, large-ﬂake, hydrothermal-sourced graphite. The Aukam Graphite Mine is 90 percent owned by Next Graphite.
The Company released preliminary geological results indicating that graphite mineralization at the Aukum Graphite Property consists of lump, crystalline medium to large flake graphite, while an average sample graded 49.2 percent high-grade graphite content. The property also features an immediately-available, surface-visible, estimated 140,000-ton stockpile. With competitive projected mining and processing costs, Next Graphite plans to begin servicing increased worldwide graphite demand related to emerging green energy markets by 2015.
- Historically producing mine with an immediately-available, surface-visible, estimated 140,000-ton graphite stockpile
- Lump, crystalline medium to large flake graphite mineralization with an average sample grade of 49.2 percent as indicated in a preliminary geological interpretation
- Competitive projected mining and processing costs due to existing water, power and transportation infrastructure
- Favourable proximity to shipping ports, railways and road systems
- Located in the mining friendly country of Namibia
Aukam Graphite Mine
Established in 1940 in the current Republic of Namibia, 35 miles southwest of Goageb near the South African border, the Aukam Graphite Mine previously produced USD$70 million of graphite at today’s prices, and is estimated to hold over 4 million tons of natural, high-grade, large-ﬂake, hydrothermal-sourced graphite deposits. The mine also features an immediately-available, surface-visible, estimated 140,000-ton stockpile of graphite that is slated for testing and processing. Recently released results from preliminary geological tests have indicated that the property holds nine major vein lodes with characteristics of being well mineralized.
The mine is Namibia’s only historical graphite producer, and despite significant past production, the area remains largely unexplored and is prospective for a larger graphite ore body. So far, nine major vein lodes have been found at the site, with three having been previously mined and five having been recently tested.
The Aukam property was mined through 1974, and operations are amenable to being reopened at a competitive cost. Adits and stopes were developed at the mine in the 1950’s and are still accessible today, while there is already electricity and water on site from a farm adjacent to the property.
Furthermore, the mine is connected by road and railway to South Africa and Angola, and is located within 120 miles of an active port in Luderitz. Overall, Aukam’s proximity to transportation infrastructure will do much to facilitate international graphite exports from the mine by Next Graphite.
The property contains a mineralization area that strikes east-west, is approximately 30 feet wide and can be traced over a distance of 1000 feet. At the bottom of the hill, the mineralization disappears beneath sand cover, while near the summit, the mineable area thins out. Fine-flaky to lump graphite dominates, with malachite specks, while sulphur occurs along cracks.
In June 2014, Next Graphite released results from a commissioned, independent geological interpretation of its Aukam graphite Project that was conducted between December 2013 and April 2014. In completing the property report, mining and geology consultancy E12 conducted Initial exploration, sampling, and testing on five vein lodes which provided preliminary information on flake size, grade, distribution and flotation characteristics of the ore blend.
Results indicated that the graphite mineralization consists of lump, crystalline medium to large flake graphite, while an average sample graded 49.2 percent high-grade graphite content. An 80 percent average recovery was achieved with limited liberation of the ore in flotation tests. In addition, there are three major tailing heaps on the property and the report estimated these heaps to contain approximately 180,000 tons of graphite-bearing rock.
All three tailings have visible graphitic content, and all nine major vein lodes on the site have characteristics that suggest they are well-mineralized.
Next Graphite will continue process testing of surface graphite samples in the third quarter of 2013 with plans to complete a preliminary economic analysis. The company will also obtain basic processing equipment and begin planning for a small-scale processing facility. Next Graphite anticipates that it will begin processing the 140,000 tons of graphite tailings at Aukam for bulk sampling and test production at the beginning of 2015 with the goal to reach a target of 2,000 tons per year of graphite production by the third quarter of that year.
With favourable conditions for relaunching the Aukam Graphite mine in Namibia, Next Graphite is poised to become a low cost producer of graphite targeting rising demand from the global graphite production industry. The development of new markets for smart grid infrastructure, clean and eﬃcient energy alternatives and even military capabiltiies are driving demand for the graphite production industry, and with its immediately available, surface-visible graphite stockpiles, tailings containing graphite bearing rock and accessible underground deposits, the Aukam property has the resources to meet this need.
Next Graphite has an experienced management team that is planning to rapidly advance the Aukam project towards production. The company expects to complete a preliminary economic assessment this year, and anticipates that the mine will be in production by the third quarter of 2015.
Cliff Bream – President and CEO
Mr. Bream is a seasoned executive, turnaround expert, and investor with over 30 years experience leading companies in the telecommunications, computer, office products, and packaged goods sectors. He has managed public and private companies as president/CEO, has served as a senior executive at Fortune 500 corporations, and has worked in environments ranging in revenue from $1 million to over $15 billion. Mr. Bream was appointed President and CEO of Next Graphite, Inc. in October 2013. He is also Managing Partner of an M&A and merchant banking firm which he co-founded. Prior to this he served as Senior Managing Director at a national specialty financial advisory services firm, and as Senior Managing Director at a turnaround and restructuring firm. Mr. Bream holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the United States Naval Academy and earned an MBA from the Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania.
Michael Doron – Chairman of the Board
Mr. Doron is an experienced entrepreneur, international business leader, and independent board member. As a strategic planner, Based in Stockholm, Sweden, Mr. Doron has used his background as CFO, COO, EVP, consultant, and lobbyist to devise the most effective tactics in achieving financial goals while mitigating risk, increasing revenues, and driving productivity. In the public company arena, Mr. Doron currently serves as Chairman of Next Graphite Inc. (OTC QX: GPNE), and Chairman and Secretary at Great East Energy, Inc. (OTC QX: GASE). Mr. Doron serves on the Board of Directors at MusclePharm Corp. (OTC QB: MSLP) where he is Chairman of its Governance and Nomination Committees, and a member of the Audit Committee.
Mulife Siyambango – Geologist
Mr. Siyambango is Chief Geologist at the Centre for Geosciences Research in Windhoek, Namibia, the prior owner of the Aukam Graphite Mine property. He previously served in a variety of senior positions at Namibia’s Ministry of Mines and Energy. Mr. Siyambango is a lecturer at the University of Namibia’s Geology Department, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry and Geography. He has an MBA from the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands, and a Master’s of Science degree from the University of Exeter’s Camborne School of Mines in the UK, with a specialization in geology, industrial minerals and rocks. Mr. Siyambango’s consultancy has advised dozens of public and private natural resource companies in Namibia.