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February 29th, 2024 | 08:15 CET

Defense Metals, Coinbase, Volkswagen: Critical metals for pioneering technologies

  • Mining
  • RareEarths
  • crypto
  • AI
  • Electromobility
Photo credits: Volkswagen Group China

The demand for critical metals is increasing rapidly worldwide. From growing digitalization to the increased use of cryptocurrencies and AI, from advances in medical technology to electromobility and defense technology - all these areas rely on these critical raw materials. Defense Metals Corporation is an experienced explorer in British Columbia whose Wicheeda project is designed to provide these critical metals. Forward-thinking companies like the crypto exchange Coinbase serve many users who use rare earth metals to power their hard drives for crypto mining. Volkswagen also requires this raw material because car consumers in China have very different needs when it comes to vehicle software than those in the European market. A new CEO for the subsidiary and software company CARIAD knows exactly what needs to be done...

time to read: 5 minutes | Author: Juliane Zielonka
ISIN: DEFENSE METALS CORP. | CA2446331035 , Coinbase | US19260Q1076 , VOLKSWAGEN AG VZO O.N. | DE0007664039

Table of contents:


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    Wicheeda project: Defense Metals Corporation on the way to becoming a leader in rare earth production

    The demand for critical metals is growing rapidly. Whether it is in increasing digitization, the rise in the use of cryptocurrencies and AI, advances in medical technology, electromobility, or defense sectors, Defense Metals Corporation is one of the experienced explorers focusing on the exploration and development of its 100% owned Wicheeda project in British Columbia, Canada.

    The rare earth project team is striving to deliver critical metals used in the industries of the future. Rare earth magnets are commonly found at the core of wind turbines and electric vehicle motors; they are used in hard drives powering crypto farms or employed in innovative medical devices. The Wicheeda property consists of 12 mineral claims covering an area of 8,301 hectares, located approximately 80 km northeast of the city of Prince George in British Columbia, Canada.

    The 2023 Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) at the Wicheeda Project includes a Measured Mineral Resource of 6.4Mt, at an average grade of 2.86% (TREO). An Indicated Mineral Resource of 27.8Mt at an average grade of 1.84% TREO and an Inferred Mineral Resource of 11.1Mt at an average grade of 1.02% TREO reported at a cut-off grade of 0.5% TREO.

    The latest study results sound promising. CEO Craig Taylor comments: "The continued positive results from our technical studies suggest that our 100% owned Wicheeda REE project has the potential to become the next rare earth producer in North America. We will supply a significant portion of the rare earths needed for future magnet metal production in the Western world. We look forward to completing and submitting the Pre-Feasibility Study for the Wicheeda REE Project in Q2/2024 and, subject to funding, moving directly into our Feasibility Study." Investors can be part of a promising growth candidate in the natural resources sector right from the start. President and Director Dr. Luisa Moreno, PhD, shared the latest developments during the 10th International Investment Forum on February 21, 2024. Click here to watch the recording.

    Coinbase: Strong rise thanks to Bitcoin index funds and pioneering role in the crypto sector

    Anyone currently invested in cryptocurrencies can look forward to a rapid rise in prices. The more cryptocurrencies are circulated, the more semiconductors and corresponding metals, such as those from Defense Metals, come into play.

    Cathie Wood is a pioneer of innovation in the investment sector. The woman against whom star investor Michael Burry is betting "short" has founded ARK Invest: 8 ETFs covering innovative companies in pioneering industries.

    With a share of 10.27%, the crypto platform Coinbase is strongly represented in its "Disruptive Innovation ARKK" ETF. Woods defines Disruptive Innovation as the introduction of a technologically enabled new product or service that potentially changes the way the world operates.

    Companies in ARKK are those that depend on or benefit from the development of new products or services, technological advancements, and scientific developments in the areas of DNA technologies and the "genome revolution", automation, robotics and energy storage, artificial intelligence, the "next-generation internet", and financial technology innovations.

    **As a crypto platform, Coinbase operates in an emerging future market that has survived the early years with challenges and volatility. Despite interim difficulties, Coinbase has successfully navigated the first major consolidation and now stands as one of the leading market participants in a stable position. Competitors include Binance, Kraken, eToro and PayPal.

    Coinbase's share price has risen in recent months because the Company also earns money from the new Bitcoin index funds by offering services such as custody for this industry. Although this business is less profitable than trading cryptocurrencies directly on its platform, Coinbase also makes a profit when the value of digital coins rises because increased trading results in higher commissions for the Company.

    Volkswagen strengthens position in China: Frank Han heads CARIAD China for innovative software solutions

    **Since entering the Chinese market, Volkswagen Group has taken a leading market position and, together with its joint venture partners, delivered over 3.23 million vehicles in mainland China and Hong Kong in 2023.

    The Group is represented across various segments through numerous automotive brands, including the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, Audi, ŠKODA, JETTA, Porsche, Bentley, Lamborghini and Ducati.

    Now that e-mobility competitor BYD is relentlessly overtaking Wolfsburg in terms of customer preference, price, service and performance, it requires a local leader who understands and can navigate the local culture. Volkswagen has recruited none other than Frank Han for its local subsidiary CARIAD China to provide the right local expertise.

    Frank Han studied mechanical engineering and computer science at Southwest Jiaotong University and the University of Texas at Dallas. As an experienced manager in the field of automotive software, he most recently served as Chief Technical Officer of ChanganTech and Chief Software Officer of Changan. There, he led a large technology team and was responsible for the development of an SDV platform. Han has extensive international experience and a deep understanding of software architecture.

    CARIAD China is a key part of Volkswagen Group's "In China, for China" strategy, which aims to shorten development time by 30% and provide customized software solutions for the Chinese market. Last year, VW's software unit, CARIAD, partnered with Chinese technology group ThunderSoft to develop China-specific functions for the German carmaker's infotainment systems and vehicle cockpits.

    As of March 1, 2024, Han will take over the management of CARIAD China. The software expert will continue to drive the development of CARIAD China and expand it into a modern software company. The focus will be on rapidly integrating the latest technologies into Volkswagen Group brand vehicles for the Chinese market. Han will also join the Board of Management of Volkswagen Group China as Executive Vice President.


    Defense Metals Corporation is on its way to becoming a leader in rare earth production. The Wicheeda project is showing promising progress, supported by a strong resource estimate and positive study results. CEO Craig Taylor sees great potential to become North America's next major producer of rare earths and is now directly planning the feasibility study. Investors can be part of this promising growth. Coinbase impresses with a strong performance thanks to Bitcoin index funds and pioneering in the crypto sector. The acceptance of cryptocurrencies has also increased in recent years. With Frank Han as head of CARIAD China, Volkswagen is driving the development of customized software solutions. As part of the "In China, for China" strategy, Han will drive the integration of the latest technologies and further strengthen Volkswagen's market position in China. Adaptation.


    Conflict of interest

    Pursuant to §85 of the German Securities Trading Act (WpHG), we point out that Apaton Finance GmbH as well as partners, authors or employees of Apaton Finance GmbH (hereinafter referred to as "Relevant Persons") may hold shares or other financial instruments of the aforementioned companies in the future or may bet on rising or falling prices and thus a conflict of interest may arise in the future. The Relevant Persons reserve the right to buy or sell shares or other financial instruments of the Company at any time (hereinafter each a "Transaction"). Transactions may, under certain circumstances, influence the respective price of the shares or other financial instruments of the Company.

    In addition, Apaton Finance GmbH is active in the context of the preparation and publication of the reporting in paid contractual relationships.

    For this reason, there is a concrete conflict of interest.

    The above information on existing conflicts of interest applies to all types and forms of publication used by Apaton Finance GmbH for publications on companies.

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    Der Autor

    Juliane Zielonka

    Born in Bielefeld, she studied German, English and psychology. The emergence of the Internet in the early '90s led her from university to training in graphic design and marketing communications. After years of agency work in corporate branding, she switched to publishing and learned her editorial craft at Hubert Burda Media.

    About the author



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