Clean TeQ Executes Agreement to Acquire ATA® Accelerated Dewatering Technology
21 September 2023
- Clean TeQ exercises option to purchase accelerated dewatering technology ATA® from US-based Soane Labs LLC.
- ATA® represents a step change to both the economics and environmental sustainability of global mine tailings management by:
- delivering rapid separation of water and solids from both in-process and in situ tailings;
- producing stackable dry tailings without the high capital and operating cost of mechanical compression commonly used in the market;
- recycling process water for reuse in operations, including the potential to recover dissolved metals otherwise lost to waste.
- Economically efficient and environmentally sound tailings rehabilitation is a recognised priority for the mining industry, as companies increasingly emphasise sustainable metal production, reducing legacy issues and improving social licence to operate.
- Clean TeQ’s proposed acquisition of ATA® represents an important strategic step in its targeted expansion into the global mine tailings rehabilitation and metal recovery
”ATA® represents a step change for the mining industry in economically and sustainably managing current and future mine tailings. We have been working with the ATA® technology for over 12 months and are satisfied that it has the potential to change the way mine tailings are processed for mine rehabilitation. ATA® complements Clean TeQ’s market-leading metal extraction technologies and enables the Company’s strategy to become a leader in the global mine tailings management industry in the rapidly growing global mine tailings management industry"Peter VoigtCEO, Clean TeQ Water
The ATA® technology was developed to offer a secure and low-cost mine tailings treatment process by rapidly separating water and solids to produce stackable dry tailings and recycled water. The technology uses smart chemistry to rapidly agglomerate the solids in ore slurries. The solids dewater under their own gravity, removing the need for high capital and operating cost pressured filtration used in the industry today. The resulting materials can be compressed and stacked, with the extracted water being returned to recycle (or sent for recovery of dissolved metals), dramatically reducing water usage. In underground mining operations the compact material may also be used for backfilling, with or without cement.
Mine waste dewatering presents an enormous market opportunity for Clean TeQ. Tailings management is a significant environmental and safety challenge for the industry, particularly for mines in tropical climates where natural evaporation rates are low, or where seismic activity increases geotechnical risks. As environmental bonding requirements increase in response to higher perceived risk in managing tailings storage facilities, ATA®’s unique rapid and low-cost dewatering offering will enhance the mining industry’s environment credentials while lowering operating and mine site rehabilitation costs.
On 9 August 2022 the Company announced the signing of the exclusive global technology licence agreement (License Agreement) with Soane Labs for the ATA® technology. The License Agreement provided Clean TeQ with an exclusive global licence to exploit the ATA® technology, with an option to purchase the technology, at Clean TeQ Water’s discretion and at a pre-agreed value, within 18 months of signing.
In accordance with the License Agreement, the Company has decided to exercise the option to purchase the ATA® technology and entered into a Purchase Agreement on 20 September 2023 through a 100% scrip issue for a total consideration of A$3 million.
Soane Labs will be issued with fully paid ordinary shares in the Company (“Consideration Shares”), on or about 27 September 2023, being the intended Completion Date. The Consideration Shares will be placed in voluntary escrow for 12 months, as per a Restriction Agreement signed between the Company and Soane Labs LLC.
The share price used for determining the scrip consideration was (0.4179) being the volume weighted average price of the Company’s shares for the 10 trading Days’ immediately preceding the date on which the Purchase Agreement was signed. Accordingly, 7,178,033 Consideration Shares will be issued and maintained on the Company’s Issuer Sponsored Sub-register. The Consideration Shares will be issued under the Company’s existing 7.1 placement capacity.
Completion of the acquisition is subject to a number of pre-completion steps, which each party is in the process of satisfying. The Purchase Agreement is not subject to any conditions precedent.
Once the Purchase Agreement has been executed the Licence Agreement will terminate.
Either party may terminate the Purchase Agreement by notice to the other party if any matter existing or occurring on or before the Effective Date or arising or occurring afterwards that constitutes a material breach by the other of the Agreement, a material breach of the warranties provide by Soane or a Material Adverse Effect.
Mine tailings management represents a major growth opportunity for Clean TeQ. ATA® will be deployed in conjunction with the Company’s proprietary metal extraction technologies (CLEAN-IX®) as part of a strategy to provide the mining industry with a holistic mine tailings rehabilitation solution that delivers:
- best-in-class tailings management, via future partnerships with both potential customers and experienced tailings management teams;
- market leading technologies that provide a step change in the economic and environmental sustainability of mine tailings management; and
- dry stacked and minimal footprint tailings solutions for current and legacy wet tailings sites, including the ability for underground backfill.
Clean TeQ is planning pilot-scale testing at several sites in the coming months leading to full scale commercial implementation.
The demand for advanced tailing management services is driving a strategy that will require a new and focused entity to service the market’s needs. Planning to establish this new entity are well advanced.