Wayne Heili: A New Uranium Bull Market is Approaching
Wayne talks about his extensive thirty-year background in uranium and why his focus is on engineering, chemicals, and metallurgy. He has worked in operations and management and is involved in the design and construction of new mining facilities.
Uranium prices were around $16.00 a pound when he entered the market in the 1980s. He witnessed the effect that Chernobyl had on the market and how the industry continued to churn out uranium which led to a prolonged bear market. During this period there was little trading in uranium as producers sold direct. The market did not correct until 2004 which was a renaissance for uranium.
In his thirty-year career, the bull market from 2004-2009 was the only one he witnessed. It was easy to see that production was not keeping up with demand.
Today there is a higher level of interest in uranium by investors. We currently see the introduction of funds like Yellow Cake who are pulling supply from the market. The question is “How long can existing inventory support a market when production is not meeting demand?”
Today the opportunities for investing are excellent, and the fundamentals look good. Currently, there is pent-up demand and some uncertainty with the Section 232 investigation.
In the United States, the industry is going to need additional investment to bring production back to historic levels. Investors should be looking at opportunities with explorers and existing strong companies. Don’t underestimate the companies that have endured some very difficult times and that continue to produce.
Time Stamp References:
0:35 – How uranium has changed in the past thirty years.
2:00 – Historical comparisons of the uranium market.
4:15 – Funds pulling material from the market.
6:30 – Are investors afraid of uranium?
7:30 – Uranium is an opportunity.
8:40 – U.S. uranium production compared to 1980.
Talking Points From This Week’s Episode
• There are great similarities today to the last bull market.
• Investors are more interested in uranium than in the past.
• The uranium market always has safety risks.
• U.S. based uranium is going to need a lot of investment.
Wayne Heili is Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Peninsula Energy Limited. He has spent the bulk of his 30-year professional career in the uranium mining industry. He most recently served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Ur-Energy, Inc. where he successfully oversaw the design, construction, commissioning and ramp-up of the Lost Creek in-situ uranium project in Wyoming USA. Before joining Ur-Energy, Inc., Mr. Heili served as Operations Manager of the Christensen/Irigaray in-situ uranium mines in Wyoming and also has experience on conventional uranium mines in Texas. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Metallurgical Engineering from Michigan Technological University and is a past President of the Uranium Producers of America.