March 22, 2017, Toronto: Great Lakes Graphite Inc. (“GLK” or the “Company” TSX-V:GLK, OTC PINK:GLKIF, FWB:8GL) today announces that the Company and Ashland Advanced Materials, LLC (“AAM” or “Ashland”) have formed a partnership to work together to develop the capability for industrial scale purification of micronized graphite. Access to large volume purification capabilities will create a strong competitive advantage for Great Lakes Graphite as it continues preparations to join the energy storage and lithium-ion battery market supply chains.
- Great Lakes Graphite is partnering Ashland Advanced Materials, a leading provider of high purity graphitized carbon products.
- Baseline purification cost data and material for customer sampling have been generated.
- Niagara facility is optimally located to benefit from well established battery-related initiatives in upstate New York, including the recently opened Battery Commercialization Center.
Great Lakes Graphite has established a partnership with Ashland Advanced Materials, LLC, a privately-owned, leading provider of graphitized carbon products, headquartered in Niagara Falls, New York. The partnership is focused on high volume purification of micronized flake graphite. Towards this end, Great Lakes Graphite and Ashland have executed a Memorandum of Understanding that establishes a framework for now moving towards a definitive agreement that will formalize the terms of the partnership.
Senior Vice President of Sales Mike Coscia said, “We are extremely fortunate to have a partner with the advanced, industrial-scale graphite purification capabilities that Ashland offers. Equally as valuable is the accumulation of knowledge and experience by the Ashland team which is a critical resource in our joint development efforts. The initial purification work we have done together is providing baseline cost data and also high purity micronized graphite material for our customer sampling program.”
The partnership will seek to leverage Ashland’s Niagara location by connecting to ongoing economic development initiatives that are well-established in the region. In January 2017, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Buffalo Billion Part 2, a continuation of a major state commitment to economic development in the Buffalo-Niagara area. Among other things, that initiative is targeting funding for strategic advanced manufacturing projects.
New York State has made a significant commitment to becoming a global leader in battery technology through investments in the New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) headquartered in Albany, New York (https://www.ny-best.org/) and the Battery Commercialization Center that recently opened in the Eastman Business Park in Rochester, New York (http://tinyurl.com/hke7vk2).
Matt Reineke, President of Ashland Advanced Materials, LLC, said, “We are excited about working with Great Lakes Graphite on graphite purification. We have gotten to know the team over the past year of working together and believe that there is a significant opportunity for high purity micronized graphite for a number of rapidly-growing markets. The Great Lakes team has proven themselves to be solid partners, resourceful and capable and well-aligned with our long held commitments and values that have Ashland Advanced Materials the successful enterprise that it is today.”
Great Lakes Graphite Chief Executive Officer Paul Gorman said, “This partnership represents a watershed moment for the company. We have in Ashland Advanced Materials, a partner who represents a crucial link in the graphite value chain and a link that is indispensable to the manufacture of graphite material for lithium-ion battery anode usage. We are grateful to have a partner with truly world-class capabilities, a strategically-located facility that has all of the required infrastructure and an unparalleled wealth of knowledge regarding advanced carbon purification technologies. We will be sharing more information about development work we have been jointly conducting as those results become available.”
About Ashland Advanced Materials, LLC: Ashland Advanced Materials, Niagara Falls, NY, is a world-class 110,000 square foot facility focused on producing high temperature heat treating products used in the solar cell and fuel cell industry. Ashland Advanced Materials is quickly becoming a global leader that provides customers with high quality advanced materials. AAM concentrates on heat treating materials using multiple induction lines with capability of reaching 3000Co temperatures. Ashland Advanced Materials has a positive impact on the environment by reducing energy consumption from utilizing hydropower from The Niagara Falls.
About Great Lakes Graphite: Great Lakes Graphite is an industrial minerals processing company working to supply customers with innovative, high quality value-added carbon products.
There is no significant graphite production in North America now. As pricing and demand continue to rise, Great Lakes Graphite is one of the first new domestic suppliers to a growing regional customer base. We continually work to deliver products of the best quality with outstanding customer service.
The Company is party to an agreement for shared use of a portion of an industrial facility located in Matheson, Ontario owned by Northfil Resources Limited, as well as for supply of high quality natural graphite concentrate (see news release dated 03/23/15), which have positioned Great Lakes Graphite to become an emerging domestic manufacturer and supplier of micronized products to a growing regional customer base.
Further information regarding Great Lakes can be found on the Company’s website at: www.GreatLakesGraphite.com.
Great Lakes Graphite trades with symbol GLK on the TSX Venture Exchange and currently has 123,444,330 shares outstanding.
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Caution Regarding Forward Looking Information: Certain statements in this press release may constitute “forward looking information” which involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward looking information. When used in this press release, such forward looking information may use such words as “may”, “will”, “expect”, “believe”, “plan” and other similar terminology. Forward looking information is provided for the purpose of presenting information about management’s current expectations relating to the future events and the operating performance of the Company, and readers are cautioned that such information may not be appropriate for other purposes. The forward looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the ability of the Company to fulfill the orders and future orders, regulatory requirements, general economic, market or business conditions and future developments in the sectors of the economy in which the business of Great Lakes operates. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. Please see the Company’s financial statements, MD&A and other documents available on www.sedar.com , for a more detailed description of the risk factors. The Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward looking information, whether a result of new information, future results or otherwise, except as required by law.