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Sonia Madigan:

John Welborn is the Chairman of Fenix Resources (FEX). We’re here at Kalgoorlie Diggers & Dealers today. Now, you’ve brought in some samples here of iron ore.

Tell us about this, where it’s from and who you are.

John Welborn:

This is what’s keeping the great state of Western Australia ticking, Sonia. Iron ore, generally. So here we are at Diggers & Dealers.

You’ve got every commodity represented except the one that really matters to WA, which is our fantastic example of high-grade iron ore.

Fenix, we’re a small-scale producer, 1.3 million tonnes per annum through the Port of Geraldton, which is behind you, and these samples are lump iron ore from our Iron Ridge project, which is 500 kilometres from Geraldton in the Midwest, and it’s a project that we’re very proud of. We commissioned it in 2020. It’s been really profitable for shareholders. We raised $15 million to get the mine going, and we’ve paid $50 million back to our shareholders, and we’ve still got $80 million in cash at the end of the financial year.

So, great mine running really well and this high-grade lump averages about 64 per cent iron and so it’s a very highly sought-after product, that goes straight into steel mills and allows them to produce a very clean, high-quality steel.

Sonia Madigan:

So why is it that we don’t hear as much about Fenix and some of those other iron
ore producers?

John Welborn:

Look, I think iron ore has generally been the play of huge scale and the Midwest
and particularly Geraldton has been eclipsed by Port Hedland and the success of the majors, BHP, Rio, Hancock, FMG and others.

The Midwest has always had potential and we’d like to think that we’re starting small and going to build up into that. So we’re very highly profitable at 1.3 million tonnes. The interesting thing about us as a miner is we also own our own haulage fleet and we own our own facilities at Geraldton Port. So we’re fully integrated and we’re looking to do more and more of our own tonnes but also unlocking other projects in the Midwest.

FEX by the numbers
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