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KoBold Metals Partners for Copper Exploration in Zambia

Tech Giants-Backed Startup Targets Major Copper Exploration in Zambia

by Ikeoluwa Ogungbangbe
KoBold Metals Zambia Copper

KoBold Metals, an exploration startup backed by tech giants like Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, has joined forces with Midnight Sun Mining. The collaboration is set to focus on the Dumbwa target within Midnight Sun’s Solwezi copper project, signaling a robust entry into a phase of heightened global demand for copper.

Under this new agreement, KoBold aims to secure a 75% stake in the Dumbwa area by committing $15 million to exploration efforts and making additional cash payments of $500,000 across four and a half years. This strategic partnership is not just a financial venture but a mission to leverage cutting-edge exploration techniques to unlock the potential of this promising Zambian copper asset.

Midnight Sun’s CEO, Al Fabbro, expressed enthusiasm for the collaboration, highlighting the timeliness of this venture in meeting the surging global demand for copper. KoBold Metals Africa’s CEO, Mfikeyi Makayi, shared insights into the Dumbwa target’s potential, noting the presence of intriguing copper anomalies and a geological setting reminiscent of other significant deposits in the region.

KoBold’s exploration strategy in Dumbwa will integrate decades of experience in the African Copperbelt with a suite of analytical tools and proprietary technology, aiming for aggressive exploration. This approach is part of KoBold’s broader mission to unearth essential minerals and metals critical for the energy transition, beyond its focus on copper.

The company has already established a notable presence in Zambia with its flagship Mingomba project, nearing the completion of resource definition drilling and a pre-feasibility study. Early results from Mingomba have been promising, with KoBold president Josh Goldman drawing parallels between the size and potential of the deposit and the Kamoa-Kakula mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a heavyweight in global copper production.

But KoBold’s vision extends well beyond copper. The startup is on a quest for various battery metals critical to the energy transition, having initiated its journey in Canada nearly four years ago with a project targeting lithium near Glencore’s Raglan nickel mine.

Now, with over 60 active projects across Africa, North America, Australia, and Asia, KoBold is harnessing artificial intelligence to revolutionize mineral exploration. Its ambition is to map the Earth’s crust like “Google Maps,” focusing on locating deposits of copper, cobalt, nickel, and lithium. By analyzing vast datasets, from historical drilling outcomes to satellite imagery, KoBold’s algorithms are designed to identify geological patterns indicative of valuable mineral deposits.

This innovative approach offers a fresh perspective on resource exploration, potentially uncovering deposits that traditional methods might overlook. As KoBold and Midnight Sun embark on this joint exploration in Zambia, their efforts could not only transform the landscape of copper mining in the region but also contribute significantly to the supply of critical minerals needed for a sustainable future.

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