Monumental Minerals (TSX-V: MNRL)(OTCQB:MNMRF) Founder Max Sali and CEO Jamil Sader on Near-Term Catalysts & Advancing Multiple Strategic Critical Metals Assets in Stable Jurisdictions
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the founder of Monumental Minerals, Mr. Max Sali and the CEO of Monumental Minerals, Mr. Jamil Sader. Jamil, Max, how are you two today?
Max Sali: Fine thank you.
Jamil Sader: Doing good, Gerardo, how are you?
Gerardo Del Real: I am well, thank you so much. Jamil, let's start with you. You just entered into a definitive option agreement with Lithium Chile to acquire 50.01% of the Salar de Turi project in the Lithium Triangle in Chile. Lithium, obviously the spot price continues to hit all time highs, it seems every month, despite Goldman Sachs doom and gloom report a couple of months ago. That has quickly been disproven and it seems like the demand part of the supply demand equation is it's not going to reverse any time soon. So with that being said, tell me a bit about this option agreement. You have to be excited to be in this salar in Chile, in the right commodity with this project.
Jamil Sader: Absolutely. So Turi, it's a great project for us. It's pretty much the entire salar. The claims cover almost the entire salar and I should add also that in addition to the definitive agreement, we actually also have TSX approval, so this is done and done. It's going forward now. We have approval from everyone we need to. The project itself, it has more of a foundation built than Laguna Blanca, and by that I mean that there is community relations that have already been done by Lithium Chile, and there's also already drill permitting in process by Lithium Chile. So we expect actually to be drilling quite shortly and we're already in discussions with drillers to move this forward in Q4.
Gerardo Del Real: That is very, very exciting. Max, I got to get to you because I know you have been working diligently with Jamil behind the scenes to get the Monumental portfolio in a robust position for this raging bull lithium market. We have a rare earth project we can get into in a bit as well that I want to ask Jamil about. But tell me about your thoughts working within the context of this lithium bull market and how excited you are to get this project under your belt.
Max Sali: Well the goal for Monumental was to always acquire more than one lithium project. We wanted to have a portfolio, we wanted to be in South America in brine. And so the goal is to always have more than just Laguna Blanca and now we have two very good projects. Both projects are now at the point where the next step is drilling along with Jemi. And so we've spent the last, I guess almost year on Jemi trying to get it ready for drilling and I think we're very close to that now. And then Jamil and I have spent the last six months with Laguna Blanca, getting that ready. We have the samples that are very good, so that's essentially ready for drilling and so is Turi. And so right now you have access to three projects under one roof that are drill ready in, like you said, a raging bull market.
And it's just shocking to see that every day the price of lithium keeps moving up or holding in. When you compare it to all the other commodities and I mean literally every other commodity, it is the only commodity that is at a high. It really hasn't come off. And just based on the supply demand factor, I don't think it is. I have tons of reports saying it's not, and it's a very exciting time for us. Brine is the most economical form of lithium and Chile has the best grade in the world for lithium. And so I'm proud to be working there.
Obviously with the Constitution getting voted against by the people of Chile, that bodes well for us. And it's a matter now of getting the drill rig turning. As Jamil and I say, it's the truth machine and we're there. So the next few news releases, you will see that engagement of a drill rig. And I think we're both very excited. Jamil and I have worked extremely hard getting these two assets. They weren't easy to say the least, but they're here, they're done, they're approved and it's time to move forward. And we have the cash in the bank to do that.
Gerardo Del Real: Before I get back with Jamil here on the merit of the portfolio, can you explain to everyone Max, the market cap right now? We've seen companies that have made discoveries of significance go from a seven to 10 million market cap to a half a billion dollar market cap within a 12 to 18 month space. It can happen that quickly when you have this kind of bull market that, as you mentioned and I mentioned up top, continues to make new all time highs nearly every single month. But can you speak a bit to that market cap?
Max Sali: Yeah, we're sitting at about 10 million market cap Canadian, and I buy as much as I can in the market when I'm allowed because I see the market cap and I think the reason why we haven't had the run other lithiums is because we're simply not as advanced. We don't have drill results. What I'd like to compare it to, if you look at PMET, which I know you're a big fan of. In November of 2021, PMET was 20 cents just where Monumental is now. Now it's over $6. It was over seven, but they have had continuous good results.
It’s the darling in the market... Actually Jamil and our advisor, Mark Saxon know their board fairly well too, and so if we start putting out results, could we be that? Everyone says, "Could you be the next PMET?" And I don't like to speculate, but I do. And I think that if we put out some results, after results, after results, and bring in some big partners, you could easily see with our share structure a few dollars stock. And that would be even at a 38 million shares out. If you value us at two or three dollars, we're still substantially less than a lot of other lithium companies. Juniors.
Gerardo Del Real: Well said. Jamil, how are you feeling about the merits of the projects that are in the portfolio now in the commodity mix? You've diversified beautifully as far as jurisdiction goes, you've diversified as far as commodity goes. It is lithium heavy, that's a great thing, but you also have some quality rare earth exposure. How do you feel about the portfolio of projects?
Jamil Sader: I'm really excited about it and every day when I... I'm a car guy, I like cars. Every day when I read about new vehicles that are coming out, you just hear about more and more EVs. So that's more and more cars that need lithium, more and more cars that need rare earths. So the more I hear about that, the more excited I am about the projects that we have. They are all good projects. They all have a lot of merit and really, as Max said, they just need the drilling to move them forward, which is our primary goal in Q4 of this year and into Q1 of next year. In terms of Laguna Blanca, we have an expanded land package now. We've almost tripled our land package from 5,400 hectares to 14,800 hectares. We've looked at the brine quality and we see that the amount of magnesium, the amount of calcium is very low. And this is really beneficial when you start to look at flow sheets and production and lithium recoveries.
At Turi, again, like I said, we've got the foundation built for this project already. The geophysics looks great, the geochemistry looks great. And again, all it needs, we just need to drill it and that's the primary focus. I'm going to be down in Chile in a couple weeks. I'll be talking to a driller that we would like to use to move that forward as fast as possible. And lastly, Jemi is, it's a wonderful project. I was there two weeks ago. We have four geos at site and they are doing some very detailed mapping. They showed me some of the geology that they found, and even though we don't have any assay results back, I already see many places that I want to drill.
And in addition to that, we have an excellent community relations in Fort Jemi, in and around the project. We're involved in the community and involved in community outreach. They had a massive flood in the nearest large community called Muzquiz. And we donated food and to some of the hardest hit people, which also incidentally were the people that had the least to begin with. So we actually have a very good relationship and we're excited about all of them. They're all excellent projects.
Gerardo Del Real: Max, you mentioned Mark Saxon, you mentioned Patriot Battery Metals. I happen to know that Mark looked at that project prior to Patriot deciding to pivot into lithium. Everybody knows I'm biased with Patriot. I was in very early. It's my largest personal holding. But I say that to say that you've clearly surrounded yourself with a very, very intelligent technical team, including obviously Jamil and Mark amongst others. Any final comments before I let you go here, Max?
Max Sali: Yeah. It's never one person that gets the job done. It's the team. Without the help of Cal Everett, we wouldn't have got Jemi. Without the help of some others, we wouldn't have got Laguna Blanca. And without Jamil we wouldn't have got Turi and so, you have the best team you surround yourself with because you're only as strong as the weakest link. And I think having the good team will make these assets move forward very quickly. We all have our specialties and I think me and Jamil compliment ourselves very well. Without Mark, I wouldn't have met Jamil and so it's just about building a team because you can have the best assets in the world, but if you can't manage those assets, you're worthless.
Gerardo Del Real: You got the share structure, you got the projects, you got the people. Can't wait to see what Mother Nature left behind for you all to discover. Gentlemen, thank you so much for your time today.
Max Sali: Thank you.
Jamil Sader: Thank you very much Gerardo.