IMDEX has acquired AusSpec, an industry leader in automated mineralogy to the mining sector, in an A$8.5 million ($5.9 million) cash and shares deal.
The deal closes a technology gap for IMDEX around rock knowledge, complements its existing tools that add value across the entire mining chain from exploration to production, and has the potential to expand its offering with major mining companies, according to IMDEX.
AusSpec Co-founder and Director, Dr Sasha Pontual, and the AusSpec team will join IMDEX, the Australia-based company said.
The deal for New Zealand-based company unlocks access to AusSpec’s unique, cloud-based Artificial Intelligence Spectral InfraRed Interpretation System (aiSIRIS) technology, IMDEX says.
aiSIRIS is proven technology that has processed more than two million spectra from more than 1,000 mining projects across the globe and has enabled AusSpec to build up an extensive spectral library, according to the company. It involves the acquisition of spectra from hand-held spectrometers, the QA/QC of spectra to ensure quality for processing in real-time and uploading the data for the cloud-based aiSIRIS AI compute engine to analyse the spectra, according to AusSpec.
“aiSIRIS complements IMDEX’s existing in-field GeoAnalysis solution and integrates with IMDEX ioGAS™ software to provide further interpretation and analysis,” IMDEX said.
IMDEX Chief Executive Officer, Paul House, said the acquisition reflects the company’s continued drive to provide more complete rock knowledge to clients through real-time technology.
“The aiSIRIS technology fundamentally changes the approach to mineralogy,” he said. “There is nothing else like this in the industry.
“Without it, the alternative workflows are costly and time consuming. This makes mineralogy routine and establishes the industry standard.”
House said the AusSpec team was a strong strategic fit for IMDEX, providing a “compelling opportunity to accelerate our rock knowledge offering for clients”.
He added: “Every mine in the world makes decisions on the four components of rock knowledge – location, texture, grade, and mineralogy. Our technology stack currently addresses three of these components and aiSIRIS satisfies the fourth – mineralogy.
“Creating answer products, such as mineralogy, from field data in near real-time, is a big part of our vision and this is just another step in our goal to be the global leaders in creating rock knowledge for resource companies.”
The acquisition price comprises A$3 million in cash, and A$5.5 million in IMDEX shares over two years.