Keynote Speakers

Daniel JimenezDaniel Jimenez - Civil Industrial Engineer, MBA.

Daniel worked for 28 years at SQM, with 20 of those involved in the lithium and Iodine business. He held the SVP Commercial position, and in this role he was responsible for the global lithium and Iodine commercial activities of SQM for 10 years. Prior to his tenure at SQM, Daniel held regional commercial responsibilities for Europe, Africa and Asia based in Belgium.

Daniel's career highlights include his participation in the commercial market introduction of Li2CO3 first and LiOH later, particularly in Europa and Asia. He negotiated the first LiOH toll production agreements in Russia, and, later on, lithium metal toll production agreements to supply battery producer in North America. He was also responsible for the completion and initial sales of SQM´s Butyllithium plant in TX, USA; and he established SQM´s commercial lithium office in China in 2004, which allowed the company to build detailed knowledge about the Chinese lithium market.

During 2008-2016 he was also responsible for SQM´s Exploration Group, focusing on iodine, nitrates, lithium as well as copper and gold. 

Daniel is Founding partner of iLiMarkets, a consulting firm focused lithium market intelligence, forecasting, lithium-strategy, strategic purchasing support, mineral economics, portfolio management, mining engineering and processing. Since September 2019, he has also been a non-executive director at Galan Lithium.

 

Alexander GrantAlexander Grant - Principal, Jade Cove Partners

Alex is Principal at Jade Cove Partners, and is an adviser to multiple lithium projects in development around the world and other battery material supply chain stakeholders. Alex is Technology Innovation Advisor to Zelandez, a lithium brinefield services company with operations in Argentina, Bolivia, and Chile. He is also a founding member of the Minviro Lithium LCA partnership, producing the world’s highest quality environmental impact models for the lithium and battery manufacturing industries. With Minviro, Jade Cove published the first LCA of the modern LiOH·H2O supply chain which is now the industry’s public benchmark for CO2 intensity of lithium production.

Alex is a co-founder and former VP Technology of Lilac Solutions, a Silicon Valley lithium extraction technology company funded by Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Ventures. At Lilac he invented core aspects of the company’s IP portfolio, supported fundraising, and built sophisticated cost structure models for lithium project developers that have unlocked significant capital for those projects around the world.

Alex has a B.Eng. from McGill University in Chemical Engineering & Philosophy, and an M.S. from Northwestern University in Chemical Engineering. 

 

Huanting Wang

Huanting Wang is a Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering, the Director of the Monash Centre for Membrane Innovation and Associate Dean (International) of Faculty of Engineering at Monash University in Australia.

He received his PhD degree from the University of Science and Technology of China and undertook a postdoctoral fellowship at the California Institute of Technology and University of California Riverside.

Professor Wang was awarded an ARC QEII Fellowship in 2004, an ARC Future Fellowship in 2010, RACI R.K. Murphy Medal in 2019 and the Membrane Society of Australasia Tony Fane Award in 2020.

Prof Wang is a Fellow of The Royal Society of Chemistry,  The American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and The Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering.

His research focuses on nanoporous materials and composite membranes for gas separation, water desalination and purification, chiral separation, ion transport and selection and electrochemical energy applications.

He has co-authored over 350 journal papers and is an inventor of 14 patents and patent applications.

 

Kate Bennett - Sustainable Development Specialist

Kate Bennett is an independent Sustainable Development specialist, focused on social impact and performance in the extractive industries. She has >10 years’ experience in sustainability strategy, management, and reporting, and in the promotion of sustainable development across diverse sectors and geographies.

As Chief Sustainability Officer at Orocobre Limited, Kate established the Company’s sustainability strategy, management framework and reporting approach as well as the Company’s climate and human rights due diligence processes. She also developed more robust community investment and engagement strategies and impact reporting in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Kate has a strong understanding of both corporate and operational imperatives, having prepared sustainability frameworks, reports and investor surveys for many ASX-listed entities and supported site-based operational teams in complex operating environments to implement change initiatives to enhance sustainability performance.

Speaking fluent Spanish and French, she has conducted site-based audits and social and human rights risk assessments across extractive industry operations in Francophone Africa, Latin America, and the Asia-Pacific.

Kate holds a Bachelor of International Studies (Languages) from UNSW, a Master of International Affairs (Sustainable Development) from Sciences Po Paris, and an MBA from the University of Queensland. Kate is also a Certified Lead Auditor of Integrated Management Systems (HSEQ) and a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.