London-listed Capital Limited expects a significant investment in Chrysos Corporation PhotonAssay units over the next two years to help nearly triple the size of its mining analytical services business over that period.
Capital said this week its subsidiary MSALABS was expected to deploy 21 Chrysos PhotonAssay units by 2025, up on the six machines bought at the end of June this year.
MSALABS is a global supplier of geochemical laboratory services to exploration and mining companies, complementing Capital’s core contract drilling and mining arms. Its PhotonAssay installation at Barrick Gold’s Bulyanhulu gold operation in Tanzania was the first of the Chrysos units deployed outside Australia, where the supplier is based and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.
MSALABS has also commissioned the X-ray analyser units in Mali and Canada, and has others bound for Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Canada, with those machines expected to be working by the end of 2022.
Capital said MSALABS was engaging with top-10 mining companies and continued to see “exceptional demand for this revolutionary new technology”. The subsidiary was forecast to generate circa-US$30 million of 2022 revenue and with the new PhotonAssay units well utilised and each producing up to $5m a year of revenue could underpin sales “in excess of $80m per annum” post-2024.
MSALABS says its early adoption of PhotonAssay is being driven by the operational and environmental advantages of the technology, which it says provides “faster, safer, more accurate and environmentally-friendly analysis of gold, silver, copper and other elements”.
“The process is significantly simpler than fire assay, dramatically improving the turnaround time for results and reducing the risk of human error, with the added benefit of being able to retain and retest samples. In addition, the use of X-rays avoids the high temperatures and harmful chemicals such as lead and acids involved in fire assay, making it more environmentally friendly with a lower carbon footprint,” it says.
MSALABS CEO Stuart Thomson said the business now had 18 laboratories around the world.
Chrysos, which listed on the ASX in May, has a current market value around A$230m.
Capital is currently capitalised at £169m, or nearly A$300m.