Canadian venture capital firm Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital has put an undisclosed amount of money into MineSense Technologies Ltd. The North Vancouver, British Columbia-based company is a provider of sensor-based sorting systems to pre-concentrate low-grade ores in the metal mining industry. In February 2013, MineSense received an investment from SD Tech Fund, managed by Sustainable Development Technology Canada.
Today, Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital (“Chrysalix EVC”), the world’s most active cleantech venture capital firm and a member of the Chrysalix Global Network (CGN), announced its investment in MineSense(TM) Technologies Ltd, providers of sensor-based sorting systems to pre-concentrate low-grade ores in the metal mining industry. The Series A round was done exclusively by Chrysalix EVC and marks the first time the Firm has invested in a startup dedicated to mining technology.
“Mining has always been a highly energy-intensive industry. However, it faces mounting challenges with declining ore grades and less favourable ore bodies, further exacerbating energy use and squeezing margins. Now is a great time for Chrysalix EVC to identify step-change mining innovations and to help build some great companies. We hope MineSense will be the first of many mining technology investments,” said Charlie Haythornthwaite, a Partner at Chrysalix EVC. “MineSense is led by an experienced team that really understands the need for delivering integrated practical solutions. Its robust sensor and systems designs have been optimized for specific challenges of the metal mining application, especially related to sensor sensitivity and scalability. We are also pleased to be able to bring in John Thompson, the President of the Canadian Mining Innovation Council as an independent Board Director.”
“After receiving strong financing interest from other funds and mining companies, we were pleased to move forward with Chrysalix EVC based on their company-building experience, technical knowledge, and industry connections,” stated Andrew Bamber, MineSense Technologies’ CEO. “We really appreciated how they quickly understood our vision and how the due diligence process with Chrysalix helped us better understand our own business.”
The rapid decline in ore grades seen in base and precious metals mining is a trend seriously challenging the sustainability of the industry. Ever greater quantities of rock need to be moved and processed to maintain output capacity leading to falling productivity relative to energy use and capital expenditure. Water intensity and the quantity of tailings also increase for similar reasons. The benefit of ore upgrading approaches is that barren waste rock can be sorted and rejected, leaving only the valuable rocks to be processed. The technology essentially reverses this decline in grade, leading to reduced costs and reduced environmental footprint. Moreover, when pre-concentration unlocks a capacity bottleneck in the mine-mill process, revenues can also be increased, significantly enhancing the sustainability of the operation.
For more information on MineSense and its technology and products, please visit www.minesense.com.
About Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital
Chrysalix EVC is a venture capital firm investing in technologies that will drive the new energy economy. The Firm provides early-stage financing, hands-on assistance, and strategic connections to innovative companies confronting the world’s most important energy and environmental issues. For the past two years, the Firm has ranked the most active clean energy technology venture capital firm in the world and today, is a member of the Chrysalix Global Network (CGN). The Chrysalix EVC team has an exceptional track record in this emerging industry. Collectively, it has over 120 years of experience in the energy industry and over 120 years in the venture capital business. The Firm is backed by a strong group of international blue-chip industrial and financial Limited Partners, and is headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, with a supporting office in Calgary, Alberta.
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