Canadian Manufacturing

Quebec lithium producer Nemaska strikes investment deal with Japan’s SoftBank

by Cleantech Canada Staff   

Cleantech Canada
Financing Operations Sustainability Cleantech Mining & Resources

The tech giant will buy a 9.9 per cent stake in the Quebec miner as Nemaska works on securing funds to build its lithium mine and processing plant

Nemaska’s Shawinigan site. The company is working to secure financing to expand its facility to a full-scale production plant. PHOTO: Nemaska

QUEBEC CITY—A Canadian lithium mining and processing company has struck a major investment agreement with Japan tech heavyweight SoftBank Group Corp.

Nemaska Lithium Inc. announced last week SoftBank has agreed to buy a 9.9 per cent stake in the company for $99 million.

The deal comes as Nemaska works to secure approximately $1 billion in financing to fund full-scale construction of a lithium mine in the central part of the province and a processing plant in Shawinigan, Que. The Quebec company said the private placement agreement will form an “important component” of the overall project’s financing.

“As a global technology pioneer and leader, SoftBank’s culture of innovation melds very well with our own corporate values and is a clear endorsement of our approach to producing environmentally friendly, low-cost lithium compounds,” Guy Bourassa, the miner’s president and CEO, said in a statement.


Along with holding a nearly 10 per cent interest in Nemaska, the investment grants SoftBank to a right of first offer on 20 per cent of the lithium hydroxide produced at the company’s Shawinigan plant, so long as it retains at least a five per cent stake in the Quebec miner. The Japanese company will also get a discount on the material used in electric car batteries based on a pre-determined market price-based formula.

The deal is expected to close by April 15.


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