The €250-mln business plan for Larco

The €250-mln business plan for Larco

The joint venture of GEK Terna and AD Holdings, officially declared last week as the preferred investor for mining company Larco’s mines and factory, has a 250-million-euro business plan aimed at gradually increasing the production of ferro-nickel and nickel sulfate to 20,000 tons per year.

Nickel sulfate is the raw material used in the production of batteries for the automotive industry and its price is as high as pure nickel and clearly higher than ferro-nickel. Given the shift of the automotive industry to electrification, as well as the continuous growth of demand for energy storage, it is estimated that demand will remain strong in the long term, creating conditions for the company’s return to healthy profits.

However, in order to enable the “clean” production of ferro-nickel and mainly nickel salt, the new ownership of the mining industry is going to invest amounts of €200-250 million over the next five years, while at the same time shaping its activities so that its footprint on the environment is zeroed. The investments will allow Larco to create a product of higher added value, using hydrometallurgy.

The risk, however, is very high and is linked to the international exchange prices of metals, the cost of energy and the euro-dollar exchange rate.

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