Whitemud receiver sets bid deadline for metakaolin operation, quarry leases

Source: Deloitte & Touche Inc., Calgary; CP staff

Court appointed receiver Deloitte has outlined a February 14–28 schedule to review offers for the assets of Whitemud Resources Ltd., whose business plan centered on production of concrete- and energy-grade high reactivity metakaolin (HRM). Key assets are a 175,000-ton/year production facility in Saskatchewan, close to the U.S. border, and 25 quarry leases spanning 12,300 acres of nearby kaolin clay deposit.

The company’s main product, WhitemudMK, is an ASTM C618 aluminosilicate that can be dosed as a supplementary cementitious material at up to 20 percent cement replacement; performance characteristics are similar to silica fume without the darker coloring effect. WhitemudMK and competing products impart brightness, lower permeability and compressive strength development in finished concrete, but remain a novelty whose industry-wide shipments to producers and packaged-mix operators measure in perhaps the five-digit tonnage range.

Following production start-up in 2007, Whitemud Resources secured early powder distribution in Alberta through Burnco Concrete and Inland Concrete, and in mid-2009 began supplying Minnesota’s Cemstone Products Co. In background materials for prospective suitors, Deloitte notes that Whitemud planned broader U.S. HRM distribution through BASF Construction Chemicals.