Tesla is reportedly considering buying Brazil-based lithium miner Sigma Lithium, which is currently valued at $3 billion.
With the rapidly rising cost of key minerals for battery production, Tesla is considering entering the mining world.
For example, in response to the rising cost of lithium, CEO Elon Musk said last year that Tesla would now “might” get into lithium mining, even if it was already in it.
At Tesla’s 2020 Battery Day event, the automaker announced it’s going into mining — starting with buying lithium claims on 10,000 acres in Nevada.
More than two years later, Tesla has yet to act on this claim or any new lithium mining technology announced at the same event.
However, the company is in the lithium refining business with a new plant under construction outside of Corpus Christi, Texas.
To get into mining, Tesla has said it could consider an acquisition, which isn’t something the company does often, especially on a large scale.
Now a new report pinpoints a potential acquisition target: Sigma Lithium.
Elon Musk’s EV maker has spoken to potential advisers about a bid, the people said, asking not to be identified as they discussed confidential information. Sigma Lithium is one of several mining options Tesla is exploring as it ponders its own refining, one of the people said.
According to the report, Sigma Lithium’s largest shareholder, A10 Investimentos, a Brazilian private equity fund, is considering pushing for a sale of the company; they are currently in talks with potential bidders and Tesla is one of the companies that has expressed interest.
Sigma declined to comment on the report, claiming it was a rumor.
The company’s main project is large lithium mining projects in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, along a corridor known for its large lithium deposits.
It is still in the development phase, but they have reached pilot-scale production and are moving into commercial operation with a goal of producing 766,000 tonnes (104,200 tonnes of LCE) per year.
Sigma Lithium’s share price has tripled in the past year, making it a more difficult target for acquisition. The stock also shot up 24% in aftermarket trading following reports that Tesla is interested in acquiring it.
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