Ares Mining has recently acquired the only permitted and producing fluorspar mine in U.S. – Lost Sheep Mine. We are in the process of ramping up production through new equipment, designing a new plant tailored to our ore, acquiring new professional personnel and new strategic partners, and building a global customer base. We have offtake agreements with multinationals secured, and we are designing new mining plans to optimize output, as well as infrastructure investment so we can meet the demands of the large American market which currently has to import all its fluorspar from abroad.
We have ambitions to create a large mining operation, capable of producing industry-grade metspar and acidspar for the world markets, and a thriving, consistent, and healthy business through the next several decades.
President & CEO
James Walker has extensive experience in engineering and project management; particularly within mining engineering, mechanical engineering, construction, manufacturing, engineering design, infrastructure, safety management, and nuclear engineering.
James’ professional experience includes designing nuclear reactors, submarines, chemical plants, factories, mine processing facilities, infrastructure, automotive machinery, and testing rigs.
Mr. Walker holds degrees in Mechanical Engineering, Mining Engineering, and Nuclear Engineering, as well as qualifications in Project Management and Accountancy, and is a Chartered Engineer with the IMechE, registered as a Project Manager Professional with the APM, and registered with APEGA as an Engineer.
Mrs. Griffin is dedicated and knowledgeable Chartered Accountant who has over a decade of experience in her field. She started her career by leading audit and assurance services for public companies withlarge international accounting firms, including Deloitte in the UK and E&Y in Canada. Most recently, she led the CFO services line at Clearline CPA.
Viktoriya is now the CFO for a number of public companies on TSX Venture Exchange with national and international operations.
Mrs. Griffin provides financial insights and strategic advice enabling the businesses to grow. She is also an active supporter of her community by being a Board member and the Chair of the Audit and Finance
Committee of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Vancouver.
VP of Exploration & Fluorspar Expert
Mr. Sanabria has over 20 years of international experience as an exploration and mine geologist in a variety of mineral deposits. He started his career working 5 years for MINERSA Group, the largest European Fluorspar Producer. He recently worked as Senior Exploration Manager for Tudor Gold Corp, VP Exploration for Rover Metals Corp., Chief Geologist for Red Eagle Exploration, and VP Exploration of American Creek Resources Ltd., G4G Resources Ltd., and Northern Iron Corp. He was President and CEO of Condor Precious Metals Inc. Currently, he is President of Malabar Gold Corp./Minera La Fortuna SAS focused on small scale gold production and toll milling in Colombia.
Fluorspar is the commercial name for the naturally occurring mineral fluorite, composed of calcium and fluorine (CaF2).
Fluorspar is the predominant commercial source for the chemical element fluorine.
Fluorine is a non-metallic element and the lightest of the halogens and therefore largely irreplaceable in its use.
There are two principal commercial grades of fluorspar: Metallurgical grade (60-96% CaF2) and acid grade (+97% CaF2).
Metallurgical grade fluorspar accounts for approximately 35-40% of total fluorspar production with the principal applications being:
Steel production – used as a flux to lower the melting temperature and increase the chemical reactivity to help the absorption and removal of sulphur, phosphorus, carbon and other impurities in the slag
Cement – used as a flux to speed up the calcination process and enables the kiln to operate at lower temperatures
Acid grade fluorspar accounts for approximately 60-65% of total fluorspar production with the principal applications being:
Aluminium production – used to produce aluminium fluoride (ALF3) which acts as a flux to lower the bath temperature in the manufacture of aluminium
Manufacture of hydrofluoric acid (HF) – the primary source of all fluorochemicals (the single largest consumer of fluorspar), a wide range of applications include:
Since the global financial crisis in 2009, there has been a contraction in acid-spar demand due to a combination of environmental legislation and demand – Fluorspar prices have followed such trend.
Acid grade fluorspar has historically commanded the highest price however the price gap between this and metallurgical grade fluorspar has reduced recently.
In 2017 prices for acid-spar have started to recover in China, export price for acid-spar (FOB China) – traditional benchmark price – is currently published as US$400-420/tonne.
The equivalent price delivered into Europe (CIF Rotterdam), published as US$300-340/tonne, has started to recover following the FOB China price recovery.
There are no net exporters of fluorspar in Europe and all EU Member States are reliant on imports.
China produces >50% of the world’s fluorspar.
Chinese fluorspar exports have continued to decline with acid-spar exports decreasing since 2011 – internal demand and production/export restrictions.
China may become a net importer in the future.
China listed fluorspar as a strategic mineral in 2017.
USA considers fluorspar as a Strategic Mineral.
North America and Europe are the largest acid-spar consumers outside China, all net importers – a potential risk to long term security of supply.
No large scale commercial alternative.
Future demand for fluorspar will highly depend on the development and use of fluorocarbon substitutes.
Industry view is that demand for acid-spar will increase by 4-5% per year over the next 5 years and prices are forecast to increase in the medium to long-term.