For investors following the electric vehicle story, moves from electric carmaker Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) are always top of mind. The pioneering Elon Musk-led company is looking to sell 20 million electric vehicles by 2030, and with that in mind it’s taking steps to secure supply of key battery metals, including lithium, cobalt and nickel.
Tesla has supply deals in place with current producers, but the company has also inked agreements with developers that have yet to see production come on stream. In recent years, the carmaker has favoured some Australian companies.
Here the Investing News Network has gathered a list of the deals Tesla has signed with ASX-listed companies for lithium, nickel and graphite supply. The companies are listed in alphabetical order. Read on to learn about their agreements with Tesla.
Which ASX battery metals companies will supply Tesla?
1. BHP (ASX:BHP,LSE:BHP,NYSE:BHP)
Mining giant BHP inked a deal with Tesla in July 2021. The diversified miner will supply nickel to the carmaker from its Nickel West asset in Western Australia.
2. Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR,OTC Pink:LINRF)
In February 2022, junior miner Liontown Resources made headlines after striking a deal with Tesla. The agreement is for an initial five year period set to begin in 2024; it is conditional on Liontown starting commercial production by 2025, and is for about one-third of Kathleen Valley’s startup production capacity.
The company’s flagship Kathleen Valley project in Western Australia is expected to produce an estimated 500,000 tonnes of 6 percent lithium oxide concentrate per year starting next year.
3. Magnis Energy (ASX:MNS,OTCQX:MNSEF)
Graphite developer Magnis Energy and Tesla joined forces this past February. Magnis is set to supply a minimum of 17,500 tonnes per year of battery anode materials to the carmaker for at least a three year term starting in February 2025. Magnis is moving forward with its Nachu graphite project in Tanzania via its subsidiary Uranex Tanzania, and has a processing plant in New York.
4. Piedmont Lithium (ASX:PLL)
North America-focused Piedmont Lithium amended its lithium supply deal with Tesla as soon as 2023 kicked off. The lithium company is now set to supply the US automaker with spodumene concentrate from the past-producing North American Lithium operation — a project Piedmont is developing together with Sayona Mining (ASX:SYA,OTCQB:SYAXF). Under the amended deal, the ASX-listed company has agreed to deliver approximately 125,000 tonnes of spodumene concentrate to Tesla beginning in the second half of 2023 through to the end of 2025.
Piedmont Lithium is also developing its Carolina lithium and Tennessee lithium projects. In Ghana, it has a partnership with Atlantic Lithium (LSE:ALL,ASX:A11), which is developing the Ewoyaa lithium project.
5. Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO,LSE:RIO,NYSE:RIO)
Last year, Tesla secured nickel supply from the Tamarack project in Minnesota, US. Diversified miner Rio Tinto owns a 49 percent stake in Tamarack, while its joint venture partner Talon Metals (TSX:TLO,OTC Pink:TLOFF) owns the remaining interest. Tesla will get 75,000 tonnes of nickel concentrate over a six year period from Tamarack, which is set to start production in 2026.
6. Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR,OTC Pink:SYAAF)
In 2021, Tesla reached its first graphite supply deal with ASX-listed Syrah Resources, the first vertically integrated natural graphite active anode material supplier outside of China. The miner is set to supply Tesla for four years with natural graphite active anode material from its facility in Louisiana, US.
Syrah Resources, which is developing the Balama project in Mozambique, has also received US$220 million from the US Department of Energy in 2022 to further develop its Louisiana facility.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, currently hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.