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Inside Martin Rowley's Vision: Why He Backs Atlas Lithium

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After hearing of his strategic investment in Atlas Lithium Corp., we at Streetwise reached out to the expert lithium investor Martin Rowley to hear why he believes this lithium stock is the one to watch.

In September of last year, former Allkem Chairman Martin Rowley came on as a strategic investor for Atlas Lithium Corp. (ATLX:NASDAQ)

Martin Rowley has been in the industry for over 40 years as a founder, financier, and lucrative mining entrepreneur. Mr. Rowley has also created and sustained two multi-billion-dollar companies.

Knowing he had years of experience, we at Streetwise thought it would be a good idea to sit down with Mr. Rowley and go over who he is, why he is interested in lithium, and why he likes Atlas Lithium specifically. 

Co-Founding a Leading Lithium Company 

Starting out with Bond Corporation in Australia. In this job, he was given a decent amount of responsibility for M&A transactions. In 1984, he established his own publicly traded company and continued investing in the mining sector.

"I get a lot of satisfaction in growing companies," Mr. Rowley said. "I was a co-founder of First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM:TSX; FQM:LSE) in 1996 based on the untapped potential of Africa for copper production. I co-founded Lithium One Limited in 2007, recognizing early the essential role of lithium in the de-carbonization requirements of climate change."

Bringing up the company overall, Mr. Rowley stated, "Atlas Lithium will be a low-cost producer in a mining-friendly jurisdiction with enormous upside from its extensive land holding."

He continued, "Lithium One, through a series of mergers and acquisitions, has grown to now be the NASDAQ-listed leading lithium company Arcadium Lithium Plc. (ALTM:NYSE;LTM:ASX)."

Mr. Rowley told us his investment philosophy is to only invest in companies and sectors where he is experienced and knowledgeable. This allows him to make solid decisions without much outside influence. 

"I also like to be actively involved rather than a passive investor," he commented. While Mr. Rowley still has investments in First Quantum, Arcadium, and other small investments in the EV sector, his primary focus today is Atlas Lithium.

An Excellent Opportunity To Invest in Lithium

Before getting into why Mr. Rowley likes Atlas, we wanted to dig into why he thinks lithium is a smart sector to invest in. 

"I have been interested in lithium since founding Lithium One in 2007," Mr. Rowley said. "The market at the moment is in a down cycle after the bullish conditions of the last couple of years. The lithium market is still an immature market, and these peaks and troughs are to be expected until it reaches a stage of maturity with pricing based on industry-standard operating margins."

Mr. Rowley explained that historically, margins for lithium producers have been over 80%.

This is not sustainable," he added, "but it means that most companies have not concentrated on their costs because of the extraordinary revenues they have achieved. Therefore, we are at a stage in the cycle where there is an excellent opportunity to " reinvest " in lithium, specifically in companies with the industry's lowest production costs and expansion potential."

A Formidable Team and Asset

With this in mind, we asked Mr. Rowley how he was initially introduced to Atlas Lithium and what made him stay. Mr. Rowley said before being formally introduced, he was aware of the company, knowing it only as another lithium exploration project in Brazil. 

"Brian Talbot, who worked for me as GM of the Galaxy Resources, Mt Cattlin spodumene operation in Raventhorpe, Western Australia, was appointed the COO of Sigma Lithium in Brazil. He mentioned to me that Atlas was nearby and had extensive land holding and excellent management, so I then became more interested!" Mr. Rowley commented.

The main thing that piqued Mr. Rowley's interest was the assets and the team.

In terms of the asset, Mr. Rowley pointed out Atlas Lithium's "industry-leading results for its main project in Brazil's Lithium Valley. From 103.4 meters continued high-quality spodumene intersects to lithium oxide grades of up to 5.23% starting at only 9 meters depth and to other locations where good spodumene starts to appear at 3 meters depth — these results are very strong."

"I am confident Atlas will grow to be a significant lithium enterprise in Brazil from its existing asset base, together with M&A opportunities that will undoubtedly present themselves as the company grows."

He went on to praise the company's formidable team and strategic placement, having a project in a mining-friendly jurisdiction.

"Marc Fogassa, the CEO of Atlas Lithium, is very ambitious, and that attracts me," Mr. Rowley explained. He liked that Fogassa is both Brazilian and has excellent contacts in the country, stating he believes this is essential. He also praised new director Brian Talbot, who became involved through his company RTEK International DMCC.

He went on to say, "I regard Brian as one of the foremost authorities in the world on lithium hard rock development and operations. There are also excellent people in RTEK who specialize in product marketing and finance. This is evidenced by the relationships Atlas has already established with leading international companies."

As for being an investor, Mr. Rowley commented, "I believe that Atlas is progressing well in adding expertise to its roster. I admire people with a vision and an ambitious team, and I am happy to lend my experience and advice to this potential high-growth company. Marc has been welcoming of my thoughts, and I look forward to continuing to be actively involved as a value-adding investor."

Bringing up the company overall, Mr. Rowley stated, "Atlas Lithium will be a low-cost producer in a mining-friendly jurisdiction with enormous upside from its extensive land holding."

Upcoming Catalysts

Knowing Mr. Rowley has been happy with what he has seen Atlas Lithium do so far, we wanted to hear about his vision for Atlas' future. We asked what upcoming catalysts he saw for the company and why others should be interested in investing in the lithium stock.

"Atlas Lithium has at least two locations where It can have open pit production, which differentiates it from other companies in Brazil's Lithium Valley. Marc's team is laser-focused on being a producer in 2024, and with the team they have, I see this as being easily achievable," he said.

He also noted that the company is currently drilling aggressively and "carefully planning its dense media separation facility to annually produce 300,000 tons of spodumene concentrate."

As for Marc, Mr. Rowley told us he believes Marc has engulfed himself in expertise on all fronts, both technical and business, which Mr. Rowley thinks is the key. 

"Atlas Lithium is relatively unknown today as management focuses on work and not media appearances," he said. "This can happen once it's met its objectives. I am confident Atlas will grow to be a significant lithium enterprise in Brazil from its existing asset base, together with M&A opportunities that will undoubtedly present themselves as the company grows."

Strategic Relationships May Help

While speaking of all the exciting things Atlas can share with its investors, Mr. Rowley also shared what he may be able to add. He pointed out that over the years, he has fostered incredible trusted relationships in the mining sector. 

streetwise book logoStreetwise Ownership Overview*

Atlas Lithium Corp. (ATLX:NASDAQ)

*Share Structure as of 4/24/2024

"To me, strong relationships are an integral and essential element of any successful business," he said. "My long-standing relationships with investors, shareholders, bankers, advisors, trading companies, etc., can be called upon at the appropriate time(s) to assist with the growth of Atlas to be a leading company in the sector." 

Ownership and Share Structure

About 36% of Atlas Lithium is owned by management and insiders. Institutional ownership is at 13.5%.

Strategic investor Mitsui & Co, Ltd. has approximately 12.7%, 

Other top shareholders include Waratah Capital Advisors Ltd. with 4.52%, Invesco Capital Management LLC with 2.48%, and Candace Shira Associates LLC with 1.47%, according to Reuters and publicly-available fillings.

Its market cap is about US$178.77 million. It trades in a 52-week range of US$45 and US$11.80.

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Important Disclosures:

  1. Atlas Lithium Corp. is a billboard sponsor of Streetwise Reports and pays SWR a monthly sponsorship fee between US$4,000 and US$5,000.
  2. As of the date of this article, officers and/or employees of Streetwise Reports LLC (including members of their household) own securities of Atlas Lithium Corp.
  3. Katherine DeGilio wrote this article for Streetwise Reports LLC and provides services to Streetwise Reports as an employee. They or members of their household own securities of Atlas Lithium Corp.
  4.  This article does not constitute investment advice and is not a solicitation for any investment. Streetwise Reports does not render general or specific investment advice and the information on Streetwise Reports should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Each reader is encouraged to consult with his or her personal financial adviser and perform their own comprehensive investment research. By opening this page, each reader accepts and agrees to Streetwise Reports' terms of use and full legal disclaimer. Streetwise Reports does not endorse or recommend the business, products, services or securities of any company. 

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