Galan Lithium (ASX: GLN) has added former Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile’s (SQM) vice president of sales Daniel Jiménez Schuster to its board to advise in non-executive capacity.
Known as the world’s second largest lithium producer, Chile-based SQM extracts lithium from brine operations in the country’s Salar de Atacama.
During his tenure with SQM, Mr Jiménez Schuster formulated the company’s commercial strategy and was responsible for marketing and selling SQM’s lithium, iodine and industrial chemicals – overseeing about US$900 million in sales last year alone.
Mr Jiménez Schuster joined SQM in 1991 and has worked in various senior roles within the company across finance and sales in Chile, the US and Belgium.
Galan chairman Nathan McMahon said people with Mr Jiménez Schuster’s experience in South America’s lithium industry were hard to find.
“That Mr Jiménez Schuster has agreed to join the Galan board is further testament to the calibre of our projects and the quality of work we have achieved to date.”
Mr McMahon added that Mr Jiménez Schuster’s experience will assist the company as it advances the Candelas project with a resource estimate due shortly and a pre-feasibility study scheduled to begin in the December quarter.
Candelas lithium brine project
Candelas is located in Argentina’s Catamarca province and recent drilling has confirmed high-grade, low impurity brines across at least 3.5km of strike at the project’s northern section.
Notable results during the June quarter were 137m at 680 milligrams per litre of lithium, 70.4m at 744mg/l lithium, and 54m at 510mg/l lithium.
Speaking with Small Caps regarding Candelas’ potential, Galan managing director Juan Pablo Vargas de la Vega said the project had “good fundamentals” that will be explored in the upcoming pre-feasibility study.
He added the company was “excited” about the imminent resource estimate for the asset.
Strong team in place
Mr Vargas de la Vega pointed out Candelas also had a strong team behind it with decades of experience in South American lithium brines.
Commenting on Mr Jiménez Schuster’s appointment today, Mr Vargas de la Vega pointed out that Mr Jiménez Schuster has thoroughly reviewed Candelas and has seen the asset’s potential – hence why he has joined Galan.
In addition to gaining Mr Jiménez Schuster, Galan has also secured the services of Boris Caro to oversee the upcoming PFS.
Mr Caro has more than 20-years’ experience in the minerals sector and his most recent role was with other lithium heavyweight Orocobre (ASX: ORE).
He assisted Orocobre with completing the feasibility study for the Olaroz expansion lithium project in Argentina and remained onboard through to the start of construction.
Mr Vargas de la Vega said having a strongly experienced team at Galan’s helm de-risked Candelas.
By mid-morning, shares in Galan were 3% higher at $0.17.