Author Topic: ALS.TO - Altius Minerals  (Read 1094330 times)

Dazel

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ALS.TO - Altius Minerals
« on: January 08, 2011, 07:58:48 AM »
****I POSTED THIS ON APRIL 13/2010....

Altius Minerals-als on the tsx

I find it very hard to play in the resource sector. I have spent a great deal of time trying to understand the pricing of mines, resources etc. To me it is has cost me dearly in a few names I could not pull the trigger on (looked at Teck resources at $6, Hudbay at $3, Quadra at $4!!!!) so I do not pretend to be an expert in the field. I still have an extreme liking for cash and liquidity and I hate capex. Obviously to a fault!

However, Altius Minerals is run by a 35 year old (Brian Dalton) who to me has created a mining company the way I would. They do not mine. They purchased the land rights of numerous mines back in the late 90's and early 2000's. For those that love "Leucadia" on this board they have done the same thing on a smaller scale. They were also a lot earlier than Leucadia. If lyou ook at what Leucadia did with Inmet in Spain you will see what Altius Minerals has done in eastern Canada. They purchased the mining rights for pennies on the dollar and have brought miners in to develop the properties and have taken a piece of the company and royalty payments. They also own a Royalty on the Voisey Bay Nickel mine. This Royalty alone paid out $5 million all in cash in 2008 and 2007...it is on the books at $11 million and it has a 25 year life...
 
They have compounded growth at 37% a year clip over the last 10 years.
*see their presentation on their website dated Feb 2010.
*Rick Rule (he is a value investor in the resource sector and has partnered with Eric Sprott...he is a big holder and bigger supporter of the company)...he has several bnn interviews where he discusses the company.
Altius is loaded in cash on a per share basis with no debt (margin of safety)....but it is their properties and      royalties that offer the upside. They purchased over 10 percent of their shares back during the downturn where the other miners were issuing shares.

mkt cap
$305 million
$205 million-cash equivalents after making $30 million in gains in IRC in 6 months (it was sold to Royal Gold with Altius securing the deal with the tender of their 10 percent position)...the market has not seen    
 this gain in their financial results but it has been disclosed.
$100m for the company after backing out the cash

$100m-The Voisey bay royalty is worth at least this over 25 years..$4m a year is low...Nickel is hitting new    highs for the year...Voisey bay is on strike right now so the market is forgetting it. This is an all cash payment made by Vale.

When you back out the cash and the Royalty Altius is free or less than free as we think the Royalty could be worth much more.

What's left for free?
Look at the website they do a great job of describing their projects...I suggest you look at the Aurora uranium project and how they did it...2006
13 projects are ongoing

Alderon is the one with the greatest near term potential. Their value in the market on conversion (not guaranteed) is in the $80m range. $2.50-they would own 34m shares on conversion if drilling supports what Alderon thinks. Alderon is made up of the former managment of Thompson Consolidated (iron ore) which is located very close to the Alderon sites. I wish we had owned Thompson it has gone from about 20 cents to over $10 bucks! They are producing iron ore this year.

They have a $29m claim in court against Vale for underpayment on their royalty in Voisey Bay

The biggest call option is NLRC...which they have written off to 0 on the balance sheet. It is the first refinery project that has been fully permitted in North america in a generation which also has some heavy hitters on board (Harry Dobson a billionaire from Scotland). They have a great deal invested in this project. With the financial crisis and suppliers troubles having put the project is in doubt (it has been through court proceedings) I am confident in the ability of the ceo Brian Dalton to salvage some value from it...If he can pull it off it as homerun. I like to speculate when it is free!

For what it is worth we own the shares...we have purchased as low as $5.70 and we are the high for the year I believe  at $10.75.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2011, 06:05:55 PM by Parsad »


Dazel

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2011, 08:09:10 AM »
UPDATE.
Stock is up about 40%.
Rick Rule (a major owner of Altius) has been bought out by Sprott.

From April 13th
"Alderon is the one with the greatest near term potential. Their value in the market on conversion (not guaranteed) is in the $80m range. $2.50-they would own 34m shares on conversion if drilling supports what Alderon thinks. Alderon is made up of the former managment of Thompson Consolidated (iron ore) which is located very close to the Alderon sites. I wish we had owned Thompson it has gone from about 20 cents to over $10 bucks! They are producing iron ore this year."

Converted
Alderon has converted Altius shares and they now own about 45% of the company with a 3% royalty on future iron ore production...the 45% is worth about $90million and the royalty???we will see...this is what Leucadia did with Fortesque.

The nickel Royalty is paying low amounts because of the Voisey bay strike but it appears that may be coming to an end.

$400m market cap now...they now have approx $300m in cash and securities...so $100m for the other 12 projects.

The oil refinery is still the massive call option...there has been no new news there.

disclosure: It is our largest position.

Dazel.


Myth465

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2011, 08:18:16 AM »
Dazel do you still see significant upside. I started getting excited towards the end then noted it was from April last year. Lol, congrats.

Dazel

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2011, 08:33:56 AM »

"Dazel do you still see significant upside. I started getting excited towards the end then noted it was from April last year. Lol, congrats."

Yes. We have doubled our position in the last month..We love the managemnet...The CEO recently added to his position through the purchase of his opitons...He has about $20 million in the company of whihc he is the co founder..all options are long term and performance based...

It basically trades for cash if you include the Voisey Bay royalty with marketable securities.


This year there are 3 catalysts playing out.

Alderon could be just huge. They will be news driven all year and already are take out candidate from their neighbours in Labrador...Labrador is the iron ore hot spot of north America right now.

Royalty- The strike at Voisey bay will end soon.

The oil refinery project has to be concluded by Oct 2011..so we will see news even if it is a liquidation Altius will get money out of it...a sale is good but A partner would double the stock over night. Take a look at the project on their website.

Altius hit $45 a share in 2007...

Dazel.

Myth465

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2011, 09:28:28 AM »
Doubling down after a 40% run is extremely hard to do for a value investor. Buying shares at $13 when they were bought for $5 is even harder. That speaks values about your conviction.

-----

2011 has really hit the ground running. I feel as though I need a none oil related resource play (more pure play then LUK and more of an investment than a tracking stock) and a bank. Both for investment returns and continued circle of competence development.

I plan to look into this one and one posted by Swizzled / Canadian Value. http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/CanadianValueInvesting-StudyOfBuffett/~3/DK2mnsG9JKQ/idea-to-check-out.html

What I do enjoy is, I dont need to know much for either of these. I understand options and will take them where I can get them when they are free.

Thanks again.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2011, 10:00:42 AM by Myth465 »

tengen

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2011, 07:03:29 PM »
Altius hit $45 a share in 2007...

Are you sure about that? I've owned ALS since 2006 (and have also added over the years) and I don't recall it ever trading that high.

I agree it's a great company. My second best investment after FFH.

shalab

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2011, 09:00:32 PM »
Looks like ALS hit a peak of about $30 in 2007. I checked out their balance sheets for the past three years - looks like they bought back their own shares which reduced their outstanding shares a bit but this is getting offset by generous distribution of options?

Also, the oil refinery was in bankruptcy where ALS owned equity. Typically, in a bankruptcy, equity gets wiped and creditors take possession. I couldnt find anything obvious to say that ALS will have something in the refinery. To be conservative with estimates, I gave it a value of zero.

Their business model is definitely interesting/smart.

Looking at their Q2 financial statements, I see cash, marketable securities, accounts receivable and income tax receivable at ~172 million. The total equity is around 232 million. The revenues from continuing operations dont seem to be adequate to explain the rest of the market cap - so pretty much people are betting on the remaining exploration projects to pay off....


biaggio

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2011, 05:34:57 AM »
Congratulations Dazel!

Looks like a good find.

I tried to find proxy in SEDAR to find out how much skin management has in the company.-the proxy for this year in SEDAR appears to be another company....anyways I am surprised and a little concerned that one of the founders only has $20 million in company (though that is pretty good for a 34 year old, assuming he started out with very little) + mkt cap is $300 m...do you know off hand how much the rest of management owns.Looks like there has been some selling -http://www.canadianinsider.com/coReport/allTransactions.php?ticker=als  -I know that selling may not be that important.

I am impressed that CEO is only 34. Never heard of him before(that does not mean much), but could he be the next superstar?

Other minor concern is that some of the cash equivalents is the value of resource stock held which I believe has had a good run lately, though.  I don t follow resource sector very closely at all.

I like the royalties. I would think it would do well in an inflationary environment + with growing economy.

Do you have a figure on how much the stock is worth?

Thanks

Dazel

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2011, 04:10:45 PM »
 They own the debt on the oil refinery...as well as the equity.
I believ the $45 was an intra day high...Rick rule said he owned at $45...could be mistaken.

The margin of safety is in the projects and assets...they made $200 million on their Uranium spin out...they will likely make more tham that on Alderon...
If they were to liquidate they would likely be worth double...You have to look at their track record of converting their assets in to cash...It is very similar to what Leucadia has done over the last 8 years. Except Altius has returned more money per porject...obviuosly on a smaller scale.

Dazel.

Dazel

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Re: Altius Minerals
« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2011, 06:17:12 PM »

Total equity does not include the approx $90 million unrealized gain on Alderon....The shares were issued
to Altius in Decemeber...we expect that the Alderon investment and cash will equal...the $400 million market cap...so the rest of the very valuable assets are free. I do not have a target price...and I do not have a time frame but the company is worth much more than $400m.

The numbers will look stupid with $100m gain in the quarter...we expect the market to give the management the appropriate multiple once the Alderon project gets more attention. They have about $3m invested in Alderon. disclosure we bought Alderon (ADV-venture) at $1.50 and sold it recently...we are more comfortable holding the bigger Altius postion.

Dazel.