Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Medallion hires two key personnel members

Medallion Resources (CVE:MDL) further strengthened its team by hiring two key personnel members in a move to help the company with its monazite-based rare earth strategy.

Medallion's rare earth production strategy exploits currently mined monazite resources, which are a by-product of heavy-mineral-sands and typically discarded during the processing flow.

Monazite is a rare earth phosphate mineral with a proven, metallurgical extraction process which has successfully produced commercial rare earth products for over 100 years.

With more than two decades of experience in international finance, Sothi Thillairajah has advised North American companies on Middle East joint ventures and early-stage mineral projects in Latin America and Africa.

Thillairajah has been appointed general manager Middle East to work on plant-siting, financing and logistic issues, within the Indian Ocean basin, related to Medallion's planned large-scale, rare-earth processing facility.

Most recently, he was managing director of Revere Capital Advisors, a hedge-fund seeding group, where he worked with investment professionals at Middle Eastern financial institutions. 

Thillairajah earned a BA cum laude in economics at the University of Rochester and also holds a Masters of business administration in finance and statistics from the University of Chicago.

The second hire, Warwick Bartle, a sales and marketing veteran in the mineral-sands sector, has been appointed director, feedstock acquisition to secure long-term monazite supply contracts.

Bartle, who is based in Australia, graduated from the Royal Institute of Chemistry in London. He began as an industrial chemist
working in pigment production for Laporte Titanium, now Cristal Pigments.

Over the years, Bartle has worked for titanium minerals and monazite companies like Western Titanium, QIT and Cable Sands. His commercial experience with titanium and related minerals spans almost 50 years.

"Adding these key people highlights our progress toward the planned financing and construction of a monazite-based, rare-earth processing facility," Medallion's chief executive Bill Bird said in a statement.

"We can now confidently choose a location for our rare-earth processing facility. Our search is focused on the Indian Ocean basin, where the majority of the world's monazite is located."

Earlier this year, the company received a report by SENES Consultants which concluded that its large-scale monazite extraction facility could be operated safely and effectively.

A concern with all rare earth processing is the safe handling and disposal of the various wastes, including the radioactive elements that are naturally present in all rare earth mineral occurrences.

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