Rapid ramp up yielding progressive results supporting company’s commercialization of its first-of-kind battery metals extraction technologies for both recycling and primary claystone resources

Reno, Nev., May 15, 2024 — American Battery Technology Company (ABTC) (NASDAQ: ABAT), an integrated critical battery materials company that is commercializing its technologies for both primary battery minerals manufacturing and secondary minerals lithium-ion battery recycling, announced its third quarter fiscal year (FY) 2024 financial results, for the period ending March 31, 2024.

ABTC is concurrently commercializing its first-of-kind technologies for both its battery recycling operations and its battery grade lithium hydroxide refining from primary claystone with an accelerated fast-to-market approach. The company’s dual business model is unique to the battery metals industry and provides the ability to increase the battery metals supply for North America with both primary and secondary resources.

During this quarter, the company added an additional shift of operations to its battery recycling facility, manufactured recycled materials, and subsequent to quarter end entered into agreements to sell these recycled metal products to domestic strategic customers. Concurrently, the company has also made great strides in its rapid ramp up of its unconventional claystone to battery grade lithium hydroxide demonstration facility.

Project highlights include: 

  • ABTC completed construction and continued ramping of production at its first integrated lithium-ion battery recycling facility in Nevada. This facility produces multiple streams of recycled battery material products, and when fully ramped has the ability to process approximately 20,000 metric tonnes per year of battery feedstock.
  • The company successfully added a second shift of operations during this quarter, and is in the process of adding a third shift as it progresses towards 24/7 operations.
  • The company announced that it has been ramping operations and has successfully completed a fixed duration run of the facility at over 115% of its design rate.
  • The recycling facility has been producing recycled products and the company has entered into agreements to sell these products to domestic strategic customers.
  • In March 2024, ABTC was selected for award of a competitive tax credit for approximately $20 million under the U.S. Department of Energy/IRS 48C Qualifying Energy Project Credit program, which may be used to reimburse the company for a portion of capital expenses already spent on this recycling facility and also for future equipment purchases. The company is in negotiations for the near-term monetization of this tax credit as these 48C credits are transferrable.
  • In March 2024, ABTC was selected for award of an additional competitive tax credit for approximately $40 million under the U.S. Department of Energy/IRS 48C Qualifying Energy Project Credit program to support the construction of a second lithium-ion battery recycling facility. The company is in negotiations for the near-term monetization of this tax credit as these 48C credits are transferrable.
  • ABTC continues to execute on its competitively awarded $10 million U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) grant to support its $20 million project for the commercialization of its next generation of advanced battery recycling technologies.
  • ABTC released an updated Initial Assessment (Preliminary Economic Assessment) of its Tonopah Flats Lithium Project that includes an 8% increase in the average lithium grade and a 7% reduction in average production costs, while utilizing only that portion of the resource classified as Measured or Indicated for the economic analysis.
  • The company completed construction and started commissioning of its claystone to lithium hydroxide (LiOH) demonstration facility which utilizes ABTC’s internally-developed processes to access the lithium housed in its unconventional resource at the Tonopah Lithium Flats Project to manufacture battery grade lithium hydroxide monohydrate product for sale to domestic strategic customers.
  • ABTC continues to execute on its competitively awarded $57.5 million U.S. DOE grant to support its $115 million project for the construction of its commercial-scale lithium hydroxide refinery.

Financial highlights include: 

  • As of March 31, 2024, the company had total cash on hand of $6 million.
  • Government grant funding increased to $3 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2024, compared to $0.7 million during the same period of the prior year. Out of the current period’s $3 million in grant funding, $0.8 million was recorded as an offset to fixed assets, as reimbursements related to equipment purchases, and $2.2 million was recorded as an offset to research and development costs within the condensed consolidated statement of operations.
  • As the company has completed the construction of the initial phase of its battery recycling facility and of its claystone to LiOH demonstration facility, there was a significant decrease in cash used for the acquisition of property, construction, equipment, mineral rights and water rights for the nine months ended March 31, 2024 of $11.4 million, compared to $18 million during the same period of the prior year.
  • Out of the approximately $25 million received from the convertible notes issued in August 2023, the company has used cash to pay down the obligation which currently has an outstanding principal balance of only approximately $9 million as of May 15, 2024.

Spurred by U.S. Department of Energy grant awards and recent 48C tax credit awards, ABTC is on-track for introducing Inflation Reduction Act compliant and responsibly-sourced, battery grade metals into the North American supply chain in support of diminishing reliance on imported materials from Foreign Entities of Concern.

Commercial Battery Recycling Operations
ABTC continues to advance its battery recycling systems to fully-ramp operations at its first commercial-scale lithium-ion battery recycling facility. In October 2023, ABTC completed the construction and installation of the initial phase of its battery recycling systems and has continued to ramp operations. This recycling facility is designed to process over 20,000 metric tonnes per year of battery feedstock materials when fully ramped. As part of the company’s continued ramp-up process, ABTC recently demonstrated a fixed duration operation at a steady-state throughput of greater than 115% of its maximum design rate at this facility.

This recycling facility utilizes a first-of-kind integrated set of recycling processes based on a strategic de-manufacturing approach that utilizes a deconstruction process combined with a targeted selective hydrometallurgical process. This system is agnostic to feedstock form factors and can process lithium-ion batteries and manufacturing scrap of a variety of sizes and shapes, and with a wide range of internal chemistries. The first phase of the recycling process produces recycled products that includes copper, aluminum, steel, a lithium intermediate, and a black mass intermediate material, and the integrated second phase will further refine these materials into battery grade nickel sulfate, cobalt sulfate, manganese sulfate, and lithium hydroxide.

Tonopah Flats Lithium Project
Battery grade lithium materials are generally manufactured from conventional resources, which include hard rock spodumene materials primarily from western Australia and lithium-rich brines primarily from South America.  Currently, the U.S. does not have large quantities of these developed conventional resources. In order to significantly increase U.S. production of battery grade lithium products, ABTC has been developing its Tonopah Flats Lithium Project with over 10,000 acres of a lithium-bearing unconventional claystone resource which has been assessed to be one of the largest lithium resources in the U.S.  In addition to developing this primary resource, ABTC has developed first-of-kind lithium hydroxide extraction and purification processes specific to the TFLP claystone material.  The company has constructed and is operating an integrated pilot scale facility to demonstrate these processes.

Recently the company released an Amended Resource Estimate and Initial Assessment with Project Economics for the Tonopah Flats Lithium Project, Esmeralda and Nye Counties, Nevada, USA  (Amended Initial Assessment) which summarizes potential mining methods, infrastructure, metallurgy, processing, engineering, and project economics for the classified Measured and Indicated Tonopah Flats Lithium Project resources to supply the planned commercial-scale lithium hydroxide monohydrate (LHM) refinery.

The construction and operation of ABTC’s LiOH pilot demonstration plant are supported by a competitively awarded grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, and the design and construction of its LIOH commercial-scale refinery is supported by an additional grant from U.S. DOE.

About American Battery Technology Company 
American Battery Technology Company (ABTC), headquartered in Reno, Nevada, has pioneered first-of-kind technologies to unlock domestically manufactured and recycled battery metals critically needed to help meet the significant demand from the electric vehicle, stationary storage, and consumer electronics industries.  Committed to a circular supply chain for battery metals, ABTC works to continually innovate and master new battery metals technologies that power a global transition to electrification and the future of sustainable energy.

Qualified Person
The mineral resource estimates presented in the ABTC Tonopah Flats Initial Assessment were performed by third-party, qualified person RESPEC, LLC and were classified by geological and quantitative confidence in accordance with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Regulation S-K 1300.

Initial Assessment
Initial Assessment is a preliminary technical and economic study of the economic potential of all or parts of mineralization to support the disclosure of mineral resources. The Initial Assessment must be prepared by a qualified person and must include appropriate assessments of reasonably assumed technical and economic factors, together with any other relevant operational factors, that are necessary to demonstrate at the time of reporting that there are reasonable prospects for economic extraction. An Initial Assessment is required for disclosure of mineral resources but cannot be used as the basis for disclosure of mineral reserves. An Initial Assessment is preliminary in nature and includes Inferred Mineral Resources that are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied that would enable them to be classified as mineral reserves. There is no certainty that the economic results of an Initial Assessment will be realized.

Inferred Resource
Inferred Mineral Resource is that part of a mineral resource for which quantity and grade or quality are estimated on the basis of limited geological evidence and sampling. The level of geological uncertainty associated with an Inferred Mineral Resource is too high to apply relevant technical and economic factors likely to influence the prospects of economic extraction in a manner useful for evaluation of economic viability. Because an Inferred Mineral Resource has the lowest level of geological confidence of all mineral resources, which prevents the application of the modifying factors in a manner useful for evaluation of economic viability, an Inferred Mineral Resource may not be considered when assessing the economic viability of a mining project, and may not be converted to a mineral reserve.

Indicated Resource
Indicated Mineral Resource is that part of a mineral resource for which quantity and grade or quality are estimated on the basis of adequate geological evidence and sampling. The level of geological certainty associated with an Indicated Mineral Resource is sufficient to allow a qualified person to apply modifying factors in sufficient detail to support mine planning and evaluation of the economic viability of the deposit. Because an Indicated Mineral Resource has a lower level of confidence than the level of confidence of a Measured Mineral Resource, an Indicated Mineral Resource may only be converted to a Probable Mineral Reserve.

Measured Resource
Measured Mineral Resource is that part of a mineral resource for which quantity and grade or quality are estimated on the basis of conclusive geological evidence and sampling. The level of geological certainty associated with a Measured Mineral Resource is sufficient to allow a qualified person to apply modifying factors, as defined in this section, in sufficient detail to support detailed mine planning and final evaluation of the economic viability of the deposit. Because a Measured Mineral Resource has a higher level of confidence than the level of confidence of either an Indicated Mineral Resource or an Inferred Mineral Resource, a Measured Mineral Resource may be converted to a Proven Mineral Reserve or to a Probable Mineral Reserve.

Forward-Looking Statements  
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are “forward-looking statements.” Although the American Battery Technology Company’s (the “Company”) management believes that such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee that such expectations are, or will be, correct. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties, which could cause the Company’s future results to differ materially from those anticipated. Potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, risks and uncertainties related to the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern; interpretations or reinterpretations of geologic information, unfavorable exploration results, inability to obtain permits required for future exploration, development or production, general economic conditions and conditions affecting the industries in which the Company operates; the uncertainty of regulatory requirements and approvals; Internal Revenue Service treatment of tax credits and other tax incentives; fluctuating mineral and commodity prices, final investment approval and the ability to obtain necessary financing on acceptable terms or at all. Additional information regarding the factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements is available in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended June 30, 2023. The Company assumes no obligation to update any of the information contained or referenced in this press release.