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KOCH INVESTS: As Demand Accelerates, Boosting Lithium Brine Development in North America

KOCH INVESTS: As Demand Accelerates, Boosting Lithium Brine Development in North America

Published 03-31-23

Submitted by Koch Industries

Close up of salt plain, sun rising in the distance. "Koch Invests".

Koch Minerals & Trading, a diverse global trading, logistics and investment company, is making a $252 million investment in Compass Minerals to support phase-one development of the company’s Great Salt Lake resource.

  • About $200 million from the investment will go toward Compass’ development of the previously identified 2.4 million metric tons of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) at its active Ogden, Utah, solar evaporation site – enabling the construction of a commercial-scale direct lithium extraction (DLE) conversion plant, with the remaining amount going toward debt reduction.

BY THE NUMBERS: By 2025, the initial capacity is expected to be approximately 11 kilometric tons (kMT) LCE, with full annual capacity ultimately reaching 35 kMT LCE.

WHY IT MATTERS: The global market for lithium is expected to grow 12% annually from 2022 to 2030, according to recent market research.

WHY KOCH INVESTED: “Koch Minerals & Trading is excited to partner with fellow Kansas-based company, Compass Minerals, a leading producer of salt, fertilizers and other essential products and materials. We admire Compass Minerals for its values and its vision to produce products that help keep people safe, feed the world and enrich lives. KM&T seeks partners like Compass Minerals to apply its bulk commodity capabilities to create greater value for customers, communities and shareholders. KM&T will also be working closely with Compass Minerals and other Koch companies to unlock a significant lithium resource at Compass Minerals’ Great Salt Lake facility and become one of the first major U.S.-based lithium producers,” said KM&T Vice President Jon Chisholm.

KOCH AS A LAB: As part of the agreement, Koch and Compass will explore areas to create value with Koch’s expansive capabilities, including supply and procurement, freight and logistics, and project engineering and development support.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: “We are pleased to welcome KM&T as our investment partner and look forward to leveraging their deep expertise and proven track record of building value,” said Compass President and CEO Kevin S. Crutchfield. “Securing funding to aggressively pursue phase one of our lithium growth opportunity has been an important focus for our management team. This strategic investment will help drive our lithium project forward, strengthen our balance sheet and enhance execution capabilities across our entire platform.”

GO DEEPER: Read more about the transaction and Koch’s other investments in energy transformation.

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Koch Industries

Koch Industries

Creating value. Transforming life.

Our life’s work is to help people improve their lives by making and innovating products and services our customers value. Our focus is on delivering mutual benefit: Win-win outcomes that make life better for customers and employees alike.

Based in Wichita, Kansas, Koch Industries is one of the largest private companies in America. A diverse set of businesses and industries across the world, we work together to keep improving and exploring new ways to make life even better.

Koch companies are involved in manufacturing, agriculture, pulp and paper, packaging, consumer products, building materials, glass, automotive components, refining, renewable energy, chemicals and polymers, electronics, enterprise software, data analytics, medical products, engineered technology, project services, recycling, supply chain and logistics, global commodities trading, and investments. Since 2003, Koch companies have invested more than $150 billion in growth and improvements. With a presence in about 60 countries, Koch companies employ more than 120,000 people worldwide, with about half of those in the United States.

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Our approach to Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) is different than most. We believe in people and seek a system of equal rights and mutual benefit where individuals succeed by helping others succeed – and where people are empowered to improve their lives and their communities. It’s why we focus on empowering individuals to improve their lives and communities through bottom-up solutions rather than top-down imperatives.

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Consuming fewer resources, minimizing waste and constantly innovating to improve our manufacturing processes and performance is essential to the way we do business – benefiting our customers, employees, investors, communities and planet.

Five environmental stewardship priorities.

With more than 300 manufacturing sites across the United States – and about 100 more globally – we’re one of America’s largest manufacturers. Every day, across those sites, we strive to create more value, using fewer resources than the day before. We do it through constant improvement and innovation – both in the products we make and how we make them, and by managing our resources in a way that benefits our customers, employees, partners, community members and society.

  • Innovation
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  • Water
  • Responsible Resource Management

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Philanthropy. Health and safety. Diversity and inclusion. Meaningful, rewarding careers and community outreach. These are just some of the vital priorities of social stewardship that empower each of our employees to develop, contribute, self-actualize and create value for the world while supporting communities in which we live.


Our management framework, Principle Based Management™, is based on proven principles of human progress and a deep appreciation for the dignity of every individual. Our private ownership, shared Vision, Values, compliance standards and oversight all help us focus on long-term value creation.

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