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Great Western Minerals CEO Buys Up Company Shares

Great Western Minerals Group (CVE:GWG) chief Marc LeVier has acquired 10,000 shares in the rare earths processing company, according to a recent filing, a show of confidence in the Canadian junior as it works toward its goal of becoming a producer of the metals.

LeVier, which came on as CEO of the company in January, purchased 10,000 shares in the public market on April 9, at 18.3 cents apiece.

The rare earths processor, which is transitioning to a fully integrated rare earths producer, makes specialty alloys used in the magnet, battery, defence and aerospace industries from two facilities in the U.S. and U.K. Its development program at its Steenkampskraal rare earth mine in South Africa, which includes a restart of the historical mine, is central for a strong flow of feedstock for its downstream processing unit.

Great Western's plan is to be one of the first to produce significant quantities of the critical rare earth oxides (OTC:CREO) that are essential materials for its alloy manufacturing operations.

The company has undergone a series of management changes to prepare for its new stage of life, just yesterday announcing the appointment of Robert Quinn as its non-executive board chair.

Quinn has served on the company's board of directors since 2006, and also acted as interim CEO of the rare earths processor from last October until the appointment of current chief Marc LeVier in January.

Great Western also said Tuesday that Ron Hochstein has been elected as independent lead director, having been with the company since early January this year. Hochstein is the president and CEO of Denison Mines, as well as a director - positions he has held since 2009.

It also recently promoted Vic Fitzmaurice to the position of Steenkampskraal managing director.

Last month, the company said its second strip casting furnace was delivered to its rare earth alloy manufacturing subsidiary, UK-based Less Common Metals (NYSE:LCM). It expects the second furnace will be fully installed and commissioned by the end of the second quarter. The new furnace is all a part of Great Western's plan to boost the facility's capacity in preparation for Steenkampskraal coming online.

The Canadian junior in March announced a strong preliminary economic assessment (PEA) of its Steenkampskraal mine, showing an IRR of 66 percent after tax, and a $555 million net present value, when applying a 10 percent discount rate.

Great Western holds 100 percent equity ownership in Rare Earth Extraction Co., which controls the Steenkampskraal mine.

Shares of the company are currently trading at 17.5 cents on the TSX Venture Exchange.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.