Keith Spence – CEO & Partner, BSc. (Hons) Geology, MBA., FCIM.
Mr. Spence held positions in investment banking, international banking and capital markets, at Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Capital Markets, Bank of Montreal (BMO) Capital Markets and Scotia Bank. He has been involved in numerous domestic and international transactions in excess of $18.5 billion and has been active in the private equity and M&A space internationally; advising companies across the globe.
Mr. Spence has conducted business in China for several years, including numerous high-level negotiations and transactions in China’s outbound investments in mining resources globally. He was also CEO of Alliance Pacific Resources, a mining company in western China; where he was responsible for identifying and evaluating growth opportunities, as well as implementing transformative strategies.
He is Co-Chair and Co-Founder of the Canadian mining valuation standards and guidelines for projects; referenced by the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX-V) and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and has presented and written extensively on project valuation. He has often been quoted in the media on international mining investments, in leading press such as Bloomberg, Financial Times of London, South China Morning Post, China Daily, CCTV, Chinese media, The Globe & Mail, AP and Reuters.
As a field geologist, Mr. Spence has experience in gold and base metals exploration in the Canadian north, China, Africa and internationally. He is a member of the Board of Directors of The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC), Hon. Board of Trustees of The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and is a graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) where he was valedictorian. He has been on the Boards of Ontario Place, the ROM and the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM); and is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council, Faculty of Science at Western University. He was Chair of The Toronto Board of Trade, Gardiner Awards and was named a Toronto Trailblazer.
Mr. Spence received the CIM Distinguished Lecturer Award, the CIM Fellow Award, the SME Mineral Economics Award (USA), the Harry Jerome Award for Professional Excellence, the Robert Elver Mineral Economics Award for outstanding contributions to Canadian mineral economics; and received the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal Award, for contributions to Canada. A Commonwealth Scholar; he is a graduate of the Global Management program from Harvard University, has an Honors B.Sc. in Geology from the University of Western Ontario, Canadian Securities Institute Certificate and an MBA from the Ivey School of Business.
Peyvand Bayzae – Partner, CFA., BA.
Mr. Bayzae has more than 20 years of international experience in analysis, evaluation and execution of mining assets and projects. His areas of expertise include: corporate finance; valuation of the gold sector; project development and nickel laterites He has particular experience with the complexities associated with one of the world’s premier geologic destinations: Indonesia.
He founded and developed Mining Valuation Research as the application of financial analysis to corporate finance and corporate development needs of mining companies and investors, generating on-going business intelligence for key functions such as due diligence, capital budgeting, portfolio optimization, corporate strategy, as well as communication with investors, analysts and other key stakeholders.
Mr. Bayzae’s transactional experience includes various instruments and commodities, ranging from debt & equity capital raising (including IPO), capital-intensive project development and financing, joint ventures as well as mergers & acquisitions, involving nickel, gold, bauxite, copper and lead-zinc. He is a graduate of the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business and a CFA Charter holder.
Winston Zhang – Partner (Asia), BA, MBA
Mr. Zhang has been involved in multiple cross-border M&A and international transactions. He has an extensive network of global business contacts and relationships. He also has significant experience in business development and financial analysis.
He joined Hermes Bancorp Investment Bank as an investment manager where he analyzed and performed due diligence on mining projects in China and overseas. He also worked as a senior management director in the Beijing office of World Capital Market, an investment bank. He was responsible for arranging loans for new energy projects and for NASDAQ listing of various projects.
Mr Zhang is a member of Australia-China, America-China and Euro-Chamber chambers of commerce. He received his International MBA from Victoria University, Australia (international investments). He also has a business degree from Xiangtan University in China, majoring in international Management.
Robert Khayrullin – Vice President, CFA., MBA.
A seasoned mining investment banking professional, Mr. Khayrullin has also been Managing Director at Niagara Capital Markets, a mining-focused corporate finance advisory firm. His diverse 10-year international career has spanned mergers and acquisitions (M&A), debt and equity financings, venture capital, project finance, and asset management.
Mr. Khayrullin worked with Goldman Sachs in London, and also worked for BMO Capital Markets’ Metals & Mining Group, raising financing for mining companies. He also executed large and small M&A transactions (including Alcoa’s landmark US$33 billion hostile takeover bid for Alcan). Prior to BMO Capital Markets, he was with Deutsche Bank’s Moscow office for three years, advising Russian and multinational resource companies on M&A, IPO’s, debt financings, and strategic advice. Mr. Khayrullin also worked with a Swiss-based €100 mm venture capital fund with a global focus, conducting due diligence and investing in early-stage companies. He started his career in the USA office of a major resource company.
Mr. Khayrullin obtained his MBA from London Business School. He is also a CFA Charterholder. He studied at Moscow State University and received his Honours Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Oklahoma (USA Congress’ Scholarship).
Kim Freeman – Advisor, BEng (Mining), BSc.
Mr Freeman is a professional mining engineer with over 40 years of mining company management/executive and project development experience involving copper, gold, nickel, PGMs, zinc, diamonds, lead and bauxite; combined with private equity experience. Currently, Mr Freeman is a Director of Klipspringer International Ventures Limited which he co-founded after being the CEO of Milost Global Inc.
He has held senior operations and project development roles worldwide with Falconbridge, De Beers, SouthernEra Resources and JCI amongst others. He has also served as Senior Vice President of Project Development and Technical Services at Katanga Mining Limited. Mr. Freeman completed a consultancy contract as the COO of RioZim Ltd in Zimbabwe, served as Group Chief Executive Officer of Mintails Limited and was the Chief Operating Officer at Platinum Australia Limited. His other significant roles include Managing Director of Atlas Consolidated Mining & Development Corp and Chief Operating Officer for Mining Operations at Hindalco Industries, Ltd., the flagship company of one of India’s largest conglomerates, the Aditya Birla Group.
Mr Freeman has dealt with a range of projects over the years mainly in conjunction with his production responsibilities but also as individual entities in more recent years. He has introduced trackless mining to the deep level gold and platinum mines of JCI in South Africa; managed the development of Klipspringer and Marsfontein diamond mines from exploration properties to production in a record 11 months at a very low cost including the design and building of a treatment plant and final recovery which was the envy of De Beers; overseen many different projects with Falconbridge, Hindalco, Atlas Consolidated and the US$3.0 billion Katanga rehabilitation and SX/EW project in the DRC. The treatment flowsheet developed for copper oxide ores is still being used by Glencore currently.
He brings a strong international mining and project background (underground & open cast). This is complemented by his ability to work well with all nationalities and a strong regard for the environment and communities adjacent to the mines and for the governments of every country. Mr Freeman holds a B.Eng. in Mining from the Technical University of Nova Scotia and a B.Sc. in Engineering from Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia. He has been a professional engineer for 41 years and is currently registered with the Professional Engineers of Ontario.
Jack Kai Lei – Advisor (China), LL.B., LL.M (Harvard).
Mr. Lei is the Managing Director of Kunlun Law Firm’s Beijing office in charge of the Firm’s international practice. He has experience in and specializes in international metals and mining projects, foreign direct investments and overseas investments and acquisitions by Chinese companies. Mr. Lei also has experience in cross-border mergers and acquisitions, financings, restructurings, technology transfers and licensing.
Mr. Lei has worked on international legal matters with reputable international law firms such as Coudert Brothers and Thieffry & Associes (both in Paris). He has contributed to more than 50 Sino-foreign Joint Ventures, WOFE (wholly-owned foreign enterprises) and international BOT projects. He has advised multinational companies on their Chinese projects; including ABB, Elf, Alstom, BNP, Total, Sumitomo, Samsung Beijing, Bank of China and Sinochem.
Mr. Lei is a co-author of the Business Law in China book. He has published more than 10 articles and books on Chinese and international business law topics in French and Chinese law journals.
Mr. Lei has Master of Law degree (LL.M.) from Harvard Law School, LL.M. from Wuhan University, and LL.B. from Southwest Institute of Politics & Law and Doctorate studies at University of Paris – La Sorbonne in France.