Strengthening Critical Minerals Supply Chains in North America: The Key Role of Quebec

When:  Dec 8, 2020 from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM (ET)
Associated with  New York SME Section

Register now to attend and for updates about NY SME's Critical Minerals Supply Chain virtual symposium on Tuesday December 8, 2020. Join us!

Register at no cost here 
Join a group of esteemed speakers engaged in a series of discussions led by industry executives and critical minerals supply chain experts with presentations by Officials from Canada’s Province of Quebec.

Thank you sponsors: Government of Quebec; Shearman & Sterling LLP; Hatch Advisory; and SRK Consulting and SME.

We hope you
join us! Topics to be discussed:

  • Why are Critical Minerals Supply Chains Important to All of Us?
  • How is Quebec Planning a Path Forward? – Case Study
  • How Do Industrial and Consumer Demand Drive the Need for More Critical Minerals?
  • First Nations’ Role in the Development and Strengthening of Critical Minerals Investment

  • Traceability, Enabling Transparency, Accountability, and Circularity - Case Study
  • How Mining Chains are Advancing the Development of Responsible Nickel Mining
  • How Are Finance and Mining Achieving Green Sustainable Finance for Critical Mineral Mining
  • What is Ahead for the Critical Minerals Sector in North America?

Register now to hear experts from these companies who will be speaking: Benchmark Mineral Intelligence • Bloomberg New Energy Finance • Blue Solutions • CRU Consulting • Dumont Nickel • Evercore Group • Geomega Resources • Government of Quebec • Hatch Advisory • House Mountain Partners • Laurentian Bank Securities • Lithion Recycling • McKinsey & Company • Nouveau Monde Graphite • Optel Group • Orion Mine Finance Propulsion Quebec • RhoMotion • Shearman & Sterling LLP • Société du Plan Nord • Societe Generale • SRK Consulting • The Lion Electric Co. • World Economic Forum

See the agenda below. Revisit this site for updates.What do we all need to know? What is the outlook? What are trends and issues that all of us need to be thinking about? What role does industry, the local communities, various layers of government have as regards supporting the exploration, development, funding, operations of mines and secondary sources of supply, e.g. recyclers as well as investors, local communities, bankers, First Nations and all stakeholders?

Join us! Register here  
Would you like to speak at this event or join us as a sponsor or submit an eoi to speak at a future NY SME event? please send your expression of interest to Tim Alch, SME NY Executive Director at 

Join NY SME for a virtual event
Tuesday 8th December 2020 - a half-day symposium about

Strengthening Critical Minerals Supply Chains in North America

The Key Role of Quebec

Join a group of esteemed speakers engage in a series of discussions led by industry executives and critical minerals supply chain experts with presentations by Officials from Canada’s Province of Quebec for a symposium about the Critical Minerals Supply Chain in North America. What do we all need to know? What is the outlook? What are trends and issues that all of us need to be thinking about? What role do the local communities, various layers of government have as regards supporting the exploration, development, funding, operations of mines and secondary sources of supply, e.g. recyclers as well as investors, local communities, bankers, First Nations and all stakeholders?

We welcome your suggestions and expressions of interest.
Times and content are subject to change

8:40 to 8:45 AM - Welcome by the New York Section of SME

NY SME: Tim Alch, Executive Director
NY SME: Alan Oshiki, Chairman, and Abernathy MacGregor: Executive Vice President 

8:45 to 9:30 AM - Setting the Stage: Why are Critical Minerals Supply Chains Important to All of Us? 

Listen to prominent critical minerals supply chain experts engage in a lively discussion about why these minerals in the 21st Century are so vital to North America. What are key issues and trends all need to know and why relying on 'free market' forces may not be enough to ensure a reliable supply of these materials? What is fundamentally different about them? What can be done to support supply and what is the outlook for critical, battery mineral supply chains?

Mining and the processing of these minerals is not well understood, especially considering the long lead times involved to get a mineral resource discovery into production - that can often be as long as 10 to 15 years, sometimes longer. How are these issues considered and managed in an environment whereby among the first or most prominent issues owners and project sponsors must first answer and account for is how they will respect and comply with the requirements of gaining and sustaining the important issue of Social License within and outside the local community? 

Bloomberg New Energy Finance: Sharon Mustri, Metals & Mining Analyst
Hatch Advisory:
Siddarth Subramani, Principal 
House Mountain Partners
: Chris Berry, Founder and President - Moderator
Laurentian Bank Securities: Angelina Mehta, P. Eng, MBA, LLM, Director, Mining, Investment Banking

Sharon Mustri is a Metals & Mining analyst at Bloomberg NEF in New York. Her research focuses on Latin America, global market trends in lithium and copper, and sustainable mining. Prior to joining BNEF, Sharon conducted research across energy and environmental topics more broadly. She holds BAs in Economics and in Philosophy from the University of California, Berkeley, specializing in Energy and Resources.

Sid Subramani is a Principal in Hatch’s Advisory practice and leads the transactions service line globally. He has 15 years of diverse experience in finance and engineering and specialist expertise in equity capital markets, market analysis, valuation, and transaction advisory in the mining industry. Sid recently led a study for the Government of Canada focusing on Canada’s advantage within critical mineral supply chains.  Prior to joining Hatch, Sid was at Veritas Investment Research where he was an Equity Research Analyst covering North American mining equities. As part of an independent equity research firm, he advised institutional investors on gold and copper macro fundamentals, industry dynamics and provided ongoing research coverage and commentary to support their investments. Sid is an Electrical Engineer and has an MBA from the Ivey Business School at Western University.

Chris Berry has been an independent analyst since 2009 with a focus on Energy Metals supply chains including lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, copper, vanadium, and rare earths. His advisory work provides strategic insights to asset managers, banks, corporates and academia and has a specific focus on how strategic metals supply chains are evolving to create opportunities and threats. Before shifting focus to analysis of these trends, Chris gained twelve years of capital markets experience on both the buy side and sell side. He has visited and performed economic analysis of metals deposits on six continents and has been featured in multiple media outlets including the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, the South China Morning Post and CNN International. Chris holds a Master of Business Administration in finance with an international focus from Fordham University, and a Bachelor of Arts in international studies from The Virginia Military Institute.

Angelina Mehta is Director, Mining Investment Banking at Laurentian Bank Securities. She has over twenty years of experience in the fields of finance and engineering. Prior to joining LBS, she was Senior Mining Advisor with Paradigm Capital as well as Vice President of Operations for North American Nickel. Over the years, Ms. Mehta served as Investment Manager for Sentient Asset Management Canada and held various operational positions for mining companies, including Rio Tinto's IOC. She currently serves on the board of directors of The Foundation of Greater Montreal, Azimut Exploration. and Falco Resources. Ms. Mehta holds a Bachelor's degree in Mining Engineering, an MBA, as well as a Master of Law degree.

9:30 to 10:00 AM - How is Quebec Planning a Path Forward? – a Case Study

A jurisdiction that has rich mineral resources and that is in close proximity to the major North American markets and that is home to many mining and exploration enterprises with a long history in the mining and mineral processing industries is the Province of Quebec. Please welcome and join in to hear Jonatan Julien, Quebec's Minister of Energy and Natural Resources speak about key points about its policy to encourage investment and mining operations in Quebec as well as why it is so important to its people, industrial economy and those in and serving the global critical and battery minerals supply chains. The Minister will be  introduced by the Government of Quebec's New York Delegate General, Catherine Loubier.

Quebec’s Delegate General in New York: Catherine Loubier 
Québec’s Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Côte-Nord region: Jonatan Julien   

Catherine Loubier was appointed Quebec’s Delegate General in New York in February 2019. Previously, she served as Deputy Chief of Staff to Quebec Premier François Legault. Until 2018, she served as Alliance Communication Global Director for Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi (Paris).

She spent close to 10 years in the federal government as Senior Advisor to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Deputy Chief of Staff to the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities and as Director of Communications to the Minister of Foreign Affairs. She also worked in the private sector advising business leaders. Ms. Loubier holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Political Science from Université du Québec à Montréal.

Jonatan Julien was elected to the National Assembly of Québec in the provincial election of October 1, 2018, representing the riding of Charlesbourg. He is currently Québec’s Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Côte-Nord region. Mr. Julien is an accountant by profession, and a member of the Ordre des comptables professionnels agréés du Québec (CA, CPA). He has a Bachelor’s degree in business administration from Laval University and a Master’s degree in public administration from ENAP.

In the last 15 years, he has worked in the areas of internal audit, risk management and governance for a number of large organizations including the following: SSQ Groupe financier; Desjardins; Office of the Auditor General of Québec and Ernst & Young. From 2011 to 2013, Mr. Julien was Secretary General of the Société immobilière du Québec, where he was responsible for major projects and corporate affairs. From 2013 to 2018, he was a municipal councillor in Québec City, representing the riding of Rivières. He was also Vice-President of the Québec City Executive Committee, with responsibility for finances, human resources, engineering, public works and infrastructure. In addition, Mr. Julien was President of the Centre d’expertise et de recherche en infrastructures urbaines (CERIU) from 2016 to 2018.

10:00 to 10:50 AM - How Do Industrial and Consumer Demand Drive the Need for More Critical Minerals? 

Listen to this roundtable discussion with key industrial and consumer-based company executives whose products use these minerals. This panel will discuss key business, economic issues and trends that support the exploration, development and expansion of critical battery minerals and related services supply chains.

Blue Solutions: Adrian Tylim, Business Development USA – Americas
McKinsey & Company: Ken Hoffman, Global Co-Leader EV Battery Materials Group – Moderator 
RhoMotion: Adam Panayi, Managing Director
The Lion Electric Co.: Patrick Gervais, VP Marketing and Communications

Adrian Tylim is responsible for leading North America business development efforts at Blue Solutions, a Bolloré company. He has broad experience with renewable energy technologies as an engineer, designer, project and business developer. He was part of NASA’s space station solar power module team, worked in various California wind energy projects, and was responsible for business development for a leading German solar engineering firm. As a sustainability champion, he designed a solution to eliminate landfills and economically produce renewable energy from waste. He also teaches MBA students Sustainable Business Strategies. He earned a MS in Energy Systems Engineering from the University of Arizona and a BS in Applied Physics from California State University.

Session Chair: Ken Hoffman is Global Co Leader EV Battery Materials, McKinsey & Company. Ken is a Senior Expert for McKinsey’s Basic Materials Institute (BMI). Ken is a thought leader on future trends for base and precious metals as well as iron ore and EV materials. He has for many years been a leading watcher of Chinese trends. He also Co- leads the Firm’s global EV battery material research group, and is a member of the Firm’s global future mobility practice. He has co-written articles on the future of EV materials, especially papers on nickel, cobalt and lithium. Prior to McKinsey, Ken was the global head of metals and mining research for Bloomberg Intelligence. Mr. Hoffman began his career at Prudential Securities, covering base and precious metals as well as the global steel industry, and headed Prudential’s global steel research team for five years. Mr. Hoffman has been widely sought after for his engaging talks about industry trends, speaking at the MB EV battery materials conference, Lithium Supply Conference, China Mining Congress for the past 4 years, Natural Resources Forum. He is a regular speaker on Bloomberg TV, Kitco, and BNN Canada. A CFA charter holder, Mr. Hoffman holds a BS in finance from Syracuse University and an MBA from Duke University.

Adam Panayi is the Managing Director of Rho Motion, a specialist EV and battery research and consultancy business established in 2018. He has significant experience in automotive and lithium-ion battery research as the Head of Benchmark Mineral Intelligence's consultancy business, as well as leading the Environment and Emissions research team for Integer Research (now part of Argus Media). He has worked with governments, financial institutions, raw material suppliers, battery and component manufacturers and OEMs on emissions and EV technology issues since 2012.

Patrick Gervais joined Lion Electric after nearly 25 years in the agency world. He previously worked as Senior Vice President, Growth for the Ogilvy group. He was also in turn, President of GPI Communication, President and Partner at Cap Communication, then Vice-President and Partner at Brad. Patrick has always been able to grow the companies for which he has worked.  At Lion Electric Patrick is part of the management team and has the mandate to market the brand and its various products, across North America in addition he manages government relations, assisting the sales and business development teams.  Entrepreneur at heart, Patrick is results oriented, he stands out for his ability to identify promising opportunities. Over the years, he has developed a strong knowledge in the effective operation of media, public relations and government relations.  He also had the opportunity to put his skills to good use with clients such as Peterbuilt, or even Isuzu, Volvo (Novabus, Prévost Car) General Motors (GM) Sweepsters, Workhorse Chassis, Lego which he accompanied in the achievement of their business objectives.

10:50 to 11:40 AM - First Nations’ Role in the Development and Strengthening of Critical Minerals Investment

The role and involvement of local communities and all stakeholders' interests in mining include owners, financiers and investors in mining as well as exploration has become a prominent and often first-asked question of executives and project owners and sponsors regarding the long-term prospects and future success by investors today. Join us in this panel discussion to hear representatives from Quebec, including First Nations and mining companies and others working to advance the interests of First Nations peoples and the interests of others in an engaging roundtable panel discussion. How have First Nations been successful in recent years to engage with mining company executives in constructive dialogue and successfully work as partners overcoming the complex issues, while aligning interests for future economic benefit and investment in the local communities in mineral rich areas in Quebec. 

Société du Plan Nord: To Be Confirmed
To Be Confirmed
To Be Confirmed
To Be Announced

11:40 AM - 12:30 PM - Traceability, Enabling Transparency, Accountability, and Circularity - a Battery Case Study 

There is an increasing need to understand material provenance in the Li-ion battery supply chain. Environmental and social impact awareness as well as political issues and resource scarcity requires all to evaluate investments, optimize production and reduce losses. Until now, industry has responded to these emerging concerns by establishing new standards about responsible sourcing and ESG issues. This panel will discuss how traceability and innovative technology are successfully used in other industries and how they can help increase the reliability in supply chains and visibility for better asset and performance management and how recycling value chains can create economic value, sustainably.

Lithion Recycling: Yves Noël, VP & CBDO
Nouveau Monde Graphite: Eric Desaulniers MSc., Geo. President and CEO
Optel Group: Ken Fallu, Global Head of Strategy, Mining and Environment
Propulsion Quebec: Simon Thibault, Director (Chair)
World Economic Forum: Mathy Stanislaus, Interim Director of Global Battery Alliance

Yves Noel is Vice-President and Chief Business Development Officer of Lithion Recycling. Mr. Noel is a chemical engineer who also earns an MBA degree. He has been successful as a business development executive in the value added specialized additives related to the high technology applications and also in general management for over 25 years. His entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen allows him to seek mutually beneficial solutions with partners and stakeholders.

Eric Desaulniers is a professional geologist (OGQ #935) with a specialization in geophysics and the founder and CEO of Nouveau Monde Graphite. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geology and a master in geophysics from Laval University in Quebec City. Previously, as a project manager for the world-leading geophysical corporation Sander Geophysics, he managed numerous international large scale interpretation and data acquisition projects in the Middle East, in Central and North African countries, and in North America for major clients like the British Geological Survey, Saudi Aramco, the Moroccan government, BRGM (France) and Shell.

Ken Fallu is the Global Head of Strategy, Mining and Natural Resources of OPTEL Group. After graduating from Laval University in Geological Engineering, Ken Fallu has developed expertise in several large-scale companies and has been working for OPTEL Group for 10 years. He is now the Head of Strategy for Mines and Natural Resources at OPTEL, working on the implementation of advanced technological solutions to achieve transparency and traceability of sustainable materials, ensuring complete supply chain visibility. Mr. Fallu is also involved in the Global Battery Alliance of the World Economic Forum.

Mathy Stanislaus is the Interim Director of the Global Battery Alliance (World Economic Forum), which consists of senior leaders from companies, NGOs and governments pursuing a vision that by 2030 the GHG emissions of the transport and power is reduced 30%, eliminating human rights abuses – in particular child labor in cobalt sourcing– and closing the clean energy access gap,  while creating additional jobs and economic value.    Mr. Stanislaus served as a senior political official for the Obama Administration at the USEPA after his nomination by President Barack Obama and confirmation by the U.S. Senate.   In that role, he led land restoration, materials management, chemical plant safety and emergency response programs.  He represented the United States at the G-7 negotiations to establish public-private partnership to advance resource efficiency and sustainable materials management in the supply chain as a strategy to address climate change.  Mr. Stanislaus is a Chemical Engineer and Environmental Lawyer.  He has more than 15 years’ experience institutionalizing solutions that advance sustainability by integrating environmental, economic and social outcomes in the private, government and not-for-profits sectors. 

Session Chair: Simon Thibault: Following almost a decade as a consultant in environmental and social responsibility (ESR) in the mining industry, Simon Thibault joined Nemaska Lithium in 2015 as Director of Environmental and Social Responsibility. His mandate included implementation of the environmental and social management systems, permitting, government affairs, and community relations. Nowadays, he is the Director Battery Value Chain for Propulsion Quebec, an industrial cluster dedicated to electrification of transportation; his present mandate includes coordinating with government agencies and industrials to develop the battery value chain in Quebec in the context of the electrification of transportation and the clean transition of our economy.

12:30 - 1:20 PM - How Mining Chains are Advancing the Development of Responsible Nickel Mining  

Often heard today are concerns about the battery material supply chain. An often neglected component in past years, the importance and role of Nickel and Cobalt supply worldwide has battery makers and consumers scrambling to source stable, reliable and responsible supplies of this metal. Join this engaging panel discussion about several key trends involving producers and consumers from the industrial side, led by key market experts who will engage all in a lively discussion about the technology involved in mining and processing of nickel, recent business trends impacting the nickel market and the outlook for an industry in need of capital investment to produce stable, sustainable, responsible nickel.

CRU Consulting: Alex Laugharne, Principal - Moderator
Dumont Nickel: Johnna Muinonen P.Eng., President
Evercore Group: Andrew Frame, Managing Director, Global Advisory, Strategic Advisory, Mergers and Acquisitions

Session Chair: Alex Laugharne is a Principal Consultant based in CRU's New York office. Alex relocated to New York in 2015 after eight years working for CRU Consulting in London. Alex now works across a broad range of commodities supporting predominately North American customers, whilst also providing important contributions to consulting projects related to his commodity specialties. Over the last three years Alex has predominately focused on working in the battery metals space, as lead author and editor of CRU’s Lithium Market Outlook and Lithium Chemical Cost Service, and having completed several projects looking in detail at the implications of battery demand for nickel for major players in the space.

Johnna Muinonen, P.Eng. is the President – Dumont Nickel, Magneto Investments LP. Prior to moving over to Magneto with Waterton’s purchase of 100% of Dumont from Karora Resources in July 2020, she was President, Dumont Nickel for Karora (previously Royal Nickel Corporation). Johnna was with Royal Nickel from 2010-2020 and led the Dumont Project through pre-feasibility, feasibility and post-feasibility studies. Prior to joining RNC, Johnna was employed by Vale (formerly Inco) for 9 years. While with Vale, she spent 5 years in Thompson, Manitoba working in the concentrator in various positions of increasing responsibility which culminated in an appointment to Mill Manager from 2005-2007. Johnna graduated from Queen’s Mining Engineering in 1998 and is a Professional Engineer in Ontario.

Andrew Frame is a Managing Director in Evercore’s Corporate Advisory business, focused on the Firm’s global Metals, Materials and Mining practice. Prior to joining Evercore, Mr. Frame spent 9 years at Credit Suisse and 4 years at RFC Ambrian covering Metals & Mining clients in Australia, Europe and the Americas. During his career, Mr. Frame has covered steel producers and processors, as well as bulk, base and precious metal miners. He has advised on a number of transactions, including AK Steel on its acquisition of Dearborn Works and related financings and the acquisition of Precision Partners. He advised Bluescope on its acquisition of the remaining 50% of NorthStar from Cargill. Mr. Frame holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Laws with Honors from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. He has passed CFA Level III.

1:20 to 2:20 PM - How Are Finance and Mining Achieving Green Sustainable Finance for Critical Mineral Mining

Join this panel discussion about funding mining, development and construction and eventual closure led by a group of advisors, mine executives and bankers who plan and communicate with stakeholders to gain and maintain finance, investor and community support. This group of experts will discuss effective technical, operating and investor relations methods for success in this area. To get financing needed, what additional sources of capital are available today that use ESG-ratings and ESG-linked finance? Learn what metrics are used today to evidence and disclose ESG results. What do debt, equity and strategic investors look for in projects as indicators of likely success in achieving a sustainable legacy? This panel will highlight these complex issues in a world seeking to responsibly source battery and critical minerals.

Shearman & Sterling LLP: Cynthia Urda Kassis, Head of Mining & Metals, Partner, Project Development & Finance - Moderator
Societe Generale:
Lenaig Trenaux, Regional Head of Metals and Mining, Americas – To Be Confirmed
To Be Confirmed
To Be Announced

Session Chair: Cynthia Urda Kassis is a Partner in the Projects Practice of the law firm, Shearman & Sterling, and Head of their Mining & Metals Group. She represents sponsors/ borrowers/ lenders/ alternative financiers in project transactions worldwide, with extensive experience in the mining and infrastructure industries. She is consistently ranked a leading project finance lawyer by Chambers, IFLR 1000 and Legal 500. Who’s Who named her “Project Finance Lawyer of the Year” three times and also named her among the “most highly regarded individuals in the world” in project finance and mining. Her recent work includes representing Nevada Copper on its Pumpkin Hollow Copper Project (“North America Mining Deal of the Year” (2020) by IJGlobal) and Orion and Blackstone on Lundin Gold’s Fruta del Norte project in Ecuador (“Latin America Mining & Metals Deal of the Year” (2017/18) by IJ Global).

2:20 – 3:00 PM – What is Ahead for the Critical Minerals Sector in North America

Join us for this forward-looking panel discussion about key issues and trends about what is ahead and what managers, owners, investors, officials should be thinking about. How to best navigate a way forward, manage risk, uncertainty, and insure certainty of low-cost supply of critical minerals in North America.

Benchmark Mineral Intelligence: James Clark, Principal Consultant - Moderator
SRK Consulting: John Pfahl, M.Eng., SME: Principal Consultant (Corporate Advisory)
To Be Announced
To Be Announced

Session Chair: James Clark has worked for Benchmark Minerals since 2018, advising clients, including OEMs, mining companies, Government entities and others on the battery and battery raw material markets. James is a geologist by training, from the Royal School of Mines (Imperial College London) and has been involved in the commodities markets since 2006. Beginning his career at CRU in London he was approached in 2011 to head up iron ore market analysis for Xstrata. In this role, and later with Glencore, James was responsible for various aspects of asset valuation, deal structuring, due diligence, acquisitions and other deals, in addition to market analysis and trade origination across the steel value chain. Following Glencore, James spent 4 years in project finance for Caterpillar Financial and in private debt funds.

John Pfahl is a Corporate Advisory Consultant with SRK. He holds a Master of Engineering (Engineer of Mines) degree from Colorado School of Mines. Mr. Pfahl provides investment support, business improvement and strategic guidance for mining industry clients. He has expertise in strategic planning, business improvement, investment analysis, risk analysis, capital markets and project valuation in the mining field. His background activities include project and investment management, strategic evaluations, technical and commercial due diligence, market studies, financial modeling, structuring and negotiating terms in mergers and acquisitions, mine planning and project finance for projects ranging from exploration through production and across a broad spectrum of commodities.

We hope you can join us. We welcome your participation, suggestions and inputs.

Please share and encourage all to participate and register here at no cost.

Best regards,
Tim Alch
Executive Director of NY SME



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