MONTREAL, March 26, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Argex Titanium Inc. (TSXV: RGX) ("Argex" or the "Company") is pleased to provide a corporate update on the Company's activities over the latter part of 2012 and the first quarter of 2013.
Roy Bonnell, President & CEO comments, "The Argex team has made significant progress over the past six months and the industry has taken notice. Our efforts in 2012 were supported by enthusiastic shareholders and the financial community. Our approach has been to move rapidly to production while mitigating all risks. To this end, the last six months have been dominated by hard work in the following areas: the feasibility study, the optimization of our product, the advancement of end-user agreements and the promotion of the Argex name amongst industry participants. Some of the highlights of this period and beyond, include:
On October 11, 2012, Argex announced the launch of its feasibility study
with GENIVAR Inc., one of Canada's largest engineering firms, to
establish the economic viability of a titanium dioxide (TiO2) first-module production facility and to provide a capital plan and
capital estimate. Citing the potential game-changing nature of the
novel CTL process, both GENIVAR and Argex have agreed to mutual terms
of exclusivity for engineering services related to the development and
construction of TiO2 processing plants projects using this patented process. At the time of the announcement, Mr. Bonnell stated that the hiring of
GENIVAR to complete the feasibility study for the future Argex TiO2 industrial facility is an important step towards launching commercial
production of our TiO2 product. Upon completion of the study, Argex will be in a position to
evaluate major partnership opportunities, and engage in detailed
construction engineering work and start hiring suppliers. "To date, the
work is on time and on budget," added Enrico Di Cesare, COO and
Vice-President of Technology at Argex, "A feasibility study is an
intensive effort for any company and those involved. We look forward to
sharing the results with everyone in the next few months," he said.
Argex and PPG Industries signed a collaboration agreement for the
development and optimization of pigment grade Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) for paints and coatings combining PPG's paint technology with Argex
TiO2 proprietary processing technology in April, 2012. The Agreement
provides for, among other things, the negotiation of a purchase and
supply agreement between PPG and Argex based on the successful
development of treatment technologies. Noted Mr. Bonnell, "We are
pleased that the collaboration between the two companies is much
broader than just a simple off-take agreement. We are not intending to
just make a simple feedstock. We are intending to make pigment which
commands a higher price. Depending on the pigment's use, different
specs are required and different coatings applied. To have an industry
leader on our side working with us collaboratively through-out the last
six months constitutes a huge plus for Argex. Although the negotiation
of a purchase and supply agreement between PPG and Argex has taken
longer than anticipated, we look forward to finalizing the agreement to
the mutual satisfaction of both parties as soon as possible."
On October 18, 2012 Argex announced the appointment of a new head of
sales and marketing, Philippe Guillemaille. Mr. Guillemaille's focus
has been two-fold: promoting Argex to the existing TiO2 industry and the development of end-user relationships. "Despite being
a new name, Argex has been able to capture the industry's attention,"
said Mr. Guillemaille. "Its ongoing collaboration with PPG is no doubt
part of that, but from the perspective of the industry players,
becoming part of the American Coatings Association is tremendously
important as it represents some of the biggest names in the coatings
industry right across the supply chain." In terms of his other
responsibilities - sales to end-users, Mr. Guillemaille added the
following, "Currently, we are in talks with many large end-users
interested in using our product, including paint companies, plastic
companies, cosmetic companies, PVC manufacturers and chemical
distribution companies - it is very exciting. I am often asked by
people how long does it take to sign a purchase and supply agreement.
In our case, some of these deals proposed to us are for a very large
volume- up to 50,000 tonnes per annum. Some of these deals proposed to
us are for a very long period - in excess of ten years. In other words,
the monetary figures involved here are potentially very large and are
of significant material amounts, not just for Argex but also for the
companies proposing them. Normally contracts of this size can be
expected to take up to 12-14 months from start to finish to negotiate,
depending on the complexity of the relationship."
On February 14, 2013, Argex announced that it had been recognized by the
TSX Venture Exchange as one of the 2013 TSX Venture 50 Companies, a
ranking of strong performing companies on the TSX Venture Exchange.
Argex achieved the second best rating of all companies included in the
mining category. "This underscored a strong year of performance by our
stock," commented Mr. Bonnell, "by focusing on operations and moving
rapidly to production while mitigating all risks, we have built
ourselves a strong following in the investment community. I am pleased
to note that on January 9, 2013, we added Cormark Securities to the
list of investment banks covering the Argex story, which underscores
the support we have been receiving."
On May 1, 2013, COO Enrico DiCesare and Head of Sales & Marketing,
Philippe Guillemaille will present at the 2013 TiO2 World Summit in Barcelona, Spain. In particular, the Argex team will
introduce its process and compare its TiO2 production process to current technologies to an audience composed of
the largest and most influential industry players. Argex is also
scheduling a number of meetings and will use this opportunity to hold
discussions with potential partners and increase its visibility among
players active throughout the TiO2 supply chain.
"It is not an overstatement that the opportunities that are being presented to us are exciting and significant," remarked Mr. Bonnell. "The considerable amount of work undertaken positions us to begin a more public discussion of pending events as they unfold in the near term."
About Argex Titanium Inc.
ARGEX Titanium INC. is a near-term producer of Titanium Dioxide. With a primary goal of advancing rapidly towards production, Argex has adopted a simple and low-risk strategy for the scale-up of its proprietary process that allows it to produce high-purity pigment-grade TiO2 directly from run-of-mine material.
The process is running continuously at the mini-plant in Mississauga, Ontario. The closed-loop process is environmentally friendly and produces minimal inert tailings.
Additionally, the Corporation owns 100% of the Mouchalagane property, which is a large Labrador trough iron ore property that represents further potential upside for the Argex shareholders.
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 release.
SOURCE Argex Titanium Inc.