Rare Earths are 17 chemically similar elements that are increasingly being used by manufacturers of flat screen tvs, ipods, computer systems, and sonar systems, that include neodymium, cerium and lanthanum.
An Aussie businessman Nick Curtis is seeing his bet on the rare earth market begin to pay off handsomely, with his Lynas Corp rare earth mine beginning to hit it’s potential.
Lynas Corp now has a market value of $3.5 billion, after Curtis invested $5 million in 2002 to develop an Australian rare earth mine at Mt Weld, aiming to challenge China’s control of global supply of the metals.
Curtis commented on his decision to gamble on the rare earth market:
“The dominance of China in rare earths was unsustainable. I’d pictured the need for order in the industry, that these were important metals that would ultimately need a stable, secure non-China supply chain.”
According to Lynas, global demand for rare earths is forecast to rise to $11.2 billion by 2014 from $7.8 billion last year.
If Curtis is correct, Lynas Corp is nicely placed to continue to reap the rewards from a bet on the market before many others even knew it existed.