Tag Archives: Craig Mitchell

Fenix in it for the long haul at Iron Ridge

Fenix Resources says it has executed a contract for the road transport component of its Iron Ridge project, in Western Australia, with Fenix Newhaul Pty Ltd.

Fenix Newhaul, formerly Premium Minehaul Pty Ltd, is the incorporated joint venture company established to implement the strategic alliance between Fenix and Craig Mitchell, the founder and former owner of Mitchell Corp, a major supplier of transport and logistics services to the Western Australian mining industry, as announced in May 2019.

Fenix Newhaul is 50% owned by Fenix and 50% owned by Newhaul Pty Ltd (formerly Minehaul Pty Ltd), an entity controlled by Craig Mitchell.

Fenix Newhaul has already ordered prime movers and trailers for the project and secured funding for this specialist equipment through an equipment manufacturer, Fenix said. Fenix Newhaul also has funding for start-up costs and equipment deposits through shareholder loan facilities totalling up to A$3.9 million ($2.8 million).

The contract is valued at around A$360 million for the estimated six-year life-of-mine, based on a terminal gate diesel price ex-Geraldton of around A$1.34/litre (current diesel price is around A$1.05/litre). It is due to commence in December 2020, in line with the current project development timeline.

Fenix Managing Director, Rob Brierley, said: “Road transport was quickly identified as the largest cost component for the commercialisation of Iron Ridge. We took an innovative approach to optimise this aspect and we strongly believe that the joint venture concept with Craig Mitchell has been the right way to go. Fenix Newhaul plan to commence operations with a mix of sub-contract and owned fleet and they are actively recruiting for personnel, with most of their employees to be Geraldton-based.”

The terms of the contract are in line with the company’s feasibility study, announced on November 4, 2019, which outlined that circa-8 Mt of high-grade hematite, grading some 64% Fe, will be extracted over a 6.5-year life of mine.

Last week, Fenix awarded the drill & blast, mining, and crushing & screening contract for Iron Ridge to MACA Ltd.

Newhaul Bulk JV to serve Mackay potash project in Western Australia

Agrimin and Newhaul Pty Ltd have formed a 50:50 incorporated joint venture named Newhaul Bulk Pty Ltd to provide road haulage and maintenance services for the Mackay potash project in Western Australia.

Craig Mitchell, the Founder and Former Owner of Mitchell Corp, one of the largest suppliers of trucking and bulk logistics services to Western Australia’s mining industry prior to being acquired by Toll Group in 2011, has been appointed CEO of the new joint venture.

The JV will provide Agrimin with benefits, including:

  • The potential for cost savings over the project’s 20-year life through the elimination of management role duplication, sharing the benefits of innovation and maximising locally sourced labour;
  • De-risking product haulage by using a proven Western Australia bulk logistics operator, while retaining control of the logistics chain;
  • Greater transparency relating to a future haulage contract; and
  • Development of driver training programs in order to maximise the opportunity to use local and Indigenous truck drivers.

The establishment of Newhaul Bulk, in partnership with an experienced operator, represents a significant milestone in the risk management and reduction of costs in relation to Agrimin’s future product haulage, Agrimin said.

The contract terms relating to the provision of haulage services for the initial 20-year project life are to be agreed in due course and, pursuant to a future haulage contract, to be executed between Agrimin and Newhaul Bulk.

Newhaul Bulk’s haulage operation is planned to include a fleet of around 24 road trains to transport 426,000 t/y of potash from Lake Mackay to Wyndham Port, where Agrimin’s proposed shiploading facility will be located.

“Newhaul Bulk has been established with the clear objective of maximising the employment of local and Indigenous people involved with the haulage of Agrimin’s potash production,” the company said. “A plan to achieve this includes the development of driver training centres and job readiness programs in regional communities, including Kununurra and Halls Creek.”

Minehaul and Fenix form trucking and logistics JV to move Iron Ridge project forward

Fenix Resources says it has formed a strategic alliance with trucking and logistics company, Minehaul Pty Ltd, in a move seen as a significant step towards the development of its Iron Ridge project in the Mid-West region of Western Australia.

The alliance will see Fenix and Minehaul form a new 50/50 joint venture company, to be known as Premium Minehaul Pty Ltd (PM). It is intended that PM will provide all trucking services to the Iron Ridge project.

Craig Mitchell, the founder and former owner of Mitchell Corp, a major supplier of transport and logistics services to the Western Australia mining industry, has been elected as Chairman and CEO of the newly formed JVC.

The Iron Ridge project is a greenfield development and, therefore, requires all infrastructure, equipment, power, water, communications and other services to be established, according to Fenix.

Pursuant to the JVC agreement, Fenix has provided an undertaking that it will ensure all iron ore transport it is involved with in the Mid-West region of WA (including relating to the project) will be conducted through the JVC.

The terms relating to the provision of these services are to be agreed in the coming months and are pursuant to a separate road haulage contract agreement, however Fenix expects the JVC arrangements to provide several key benefits, including:

  • Greater transparency in relation to the likely transport costs associated with the project;
  • Significant experience that Craig Mitchell brings to Fenix’s trucking operations;
  • Potential for significant cost savings relating to transport costs, and;
  • Elimination of management role duplication and the sharing of the benefits of innovation throughout the life of the project.

The Iron Ridge project is some 490 km by road from the Geraldton port and, therefore, it is expected that a significant proportion of the total operating costs associated with the project will be related to the cost of road transport and logistics, Fenix said.

Fenix’s Managing Director, Robert Brierley, said the company already had a well-developed road transport model with detailed cost estimates for the task at hand, and this model will be refined further now the JVC had been formed.

Related to this agreement, Minehaul has subscribed for A$250,000 ($173,975) of new Fenix shares as part of a larger A$1.25 million placement.