September 5, 2023
BSNC will make an initial investment of US$2.0 million in Graphite One, with an option to invest an additional US$8.4 million, including the exercise of warrants, fully supporting the development of Graphite Creek Deposit.
Investment builds on $37.5 million Department of Defense award to Graphite One under the U.S. Defense Production Act.
Graphite One and BSNC will partner on continued regional and community development.
Sept. 5, 2023 – Vancouver, British Columbia – Graphite One Inc. (TSX-V:GPH; OTCQX: GPHOF) (“Graphite One”, “G1” or the “Company”), planning a complete domestic U.S. supply chain for advanced graphite materials, is pleased to announce that it has arranged a strategic investment from the Bering Straits Native Corporation (“BSNC”) for up to US$10.4 million.
This is not just an investment in Graphite One, it is a long-term investment in our region. We at BSNC have watched for years as Graphite One has worked to advance the Graphite Creek project and become a friendly neighbor in the region,” said Dan Graham, BSNC Interim President and CEO. “Graphite One has told us of its intent to develop an environmentally responsible project and provide an exciting economic opportunity for the region that hopefully will play a crucial role in the nation’s transition to a clean energy future. This is at the heart of our Board’s unanimous support of the project.”
“After careful review and many long discussions, we believe Graphite One shares our values of land stewardship and providing benefits to the region. Our investment in Graphite One is about providing opportunities for BSNC shareholders and being proactive about the future of our region,” said BSNC Chair Cindy Massie.
Formed in 1972, BSNC is the regional Alaska Native Corporation (ANC) for the Bering Strait region, which includes the Seward Peninsula in Western Alaska and the coastal lands surrounding Norton Sound. The Graphite Creek Project is located on State and private land in the BSNC region.
“We are grateful for and humbled by BSNC’s support. Working collaboratively, we can make Graphite Creek a project to be modeled after in Alaska and nationwide,” said Anthony Huston, President and CEO of Graphite One. “BSNC is a dynamic development force in Alaska, with an unwavering commitment to community and heritage.” Huston continued. “All of us at G1 look forward to partnering with BSNC on ways to make our project a model not just for Alaska — but for a nation that is navigating the transition to a new energy future.”
The Graphite One-BSNC agreement follows multiple community meetings with local residents and Graphite One officials during 2023. To coordinate regional and community development, G1 and BSNC will establish an advisory board to ensure direct communications of the Company’s activities and development details as well as utilize the local expertise of BSNC.
The BSNC investment and community development program follows the July 17, 2023 award to G1’s wholly owned subsidiary, Graphite One (Alaska), Inc., of a Department of Defense (“DoD”) Technology Investment Agreement grant of $37.5 million under Title III of the Defense Production Act (“DPA”).
|Private Placement The Initial Investment of US$2.0 million is by way of a non-brokered private placement for 2,802,690 units at a price of CA$0.97 per unit. Each unit consists of one common share and one common share purchase warrant (“Warrants”) exercisable at CA$1.21 per share expiring twelve (12) months from the closing of the private placement. The Company has received conditional approval for this private placement from the TSX Venture Exchange. All securities issued in connection with this private placement will have a restricted period that expires four months and one day following the date of issuance. The Company granted BSNC an option to invest a further US$6.0 million in common shares of the Company at any time within twelve (12) months closing of the private placement (the “Option”). If and when the Option and Warrants are exercised, BSNC would have invested a total of US$10.4 million in Graphite One, based on the current exchange rate. Net proceeds from the investment will be used to support the feasibility study, community investment and general corporate purposes.|
DPA Title III $37.5 million grant to Graphite One
The funding objective of the DoD-Graphite One (Alaska) Technology Investment Agreement is to perform an accelerated Feasibility Study to modernize and expand domestic production capacity and supply for graphite battery anodes necessary for electronic vehicles and alternative energy batteries, as an essential national defense technology item.
The DPA funding allows G1 to accelerate its Feasibility Study covering its Graphite Creek Project 60 km (35 miles) north of Nome, Alaska. Graphite Creek was recently confirmed by the U.S. Geological Survey to be the country’s largest known graphite resource, and “among the largest in the world.”
With the United States currently 100 per cent import dependent for natural graphite, Graphite One is planning to develop a complete U.S.-based, advanced graphite supply chain solution anchored by the Graphite Creek resource. The Graphite One Project plan includes an advanced graphite material and battery anode manufacturing plant expected to be sited in Washington State integrated with the development of the Graphite Creek Property. The plan includes a recycling facility to reclaim graphite and the other battery materials, to be co-located at the Washington State site, the third link in Graphite One’s circular economy strategy.