By Curtin University

Seismic services company HiSeis began as an ambitious idea by two Curtin University researchers almost two decades ago, but has since evolved into a leading international provider of seismic reflection technology and an ASX listed company.

Curtin University spinout company HiSeis has announced the sale of the majority of its shares to a syndicate of investors represented by Azure Capital Ltd and Sternship Advisors. The deal will see a change in control from its founding shareholders, which includes Curtin University, to a group of senior industry executives, mining services company Ausdrill and other professional investors.

“The change in shareholder structure will provide support for our international expansion plans and consolidate our position as the leading hard rock seismic service provider in Australia,” says Don Pridmore, HiSeis Chairman.

HiSeis was established in 2009 to commercialise the research of Professor Anton Kepic and Milovan Urosevic, who developed tools and techniques that have enabled the application of seismic reflection technology to minerals exploration.

Commonly used in oil and gas exploration, seismic reflection uses the transmission of sound waves through the earth and their reflections off different geological features to build up a detailed 3D image of subsurface hydrocarbon deposits. However, the technique was not easily applied in mining because of the properties of hard mineralised rocks.

Kepic and Milovan overcame these limitations by developing high definition seismic reflection techniques and custom designed 2D and 3D seismic survey methods that could be adapted to complex hard-rock geological environments and deliver value for mineral exploration.

HiSeis is now the leading seismic services company specialising in hard-rock mineral deposits. The company has grown its revenues year on year at a rate of 30 per cent and has clients around the globe, including AngloGold Ashanti, BHP, Evolution Mining, Fortescue Metals Group, Northern Star Resources Limited, Rio Tinto and more.

The transaction of company shares represents a significant commercialisation outcome for Curtin and builds on the University’s successful track record of a number of exits from its startup companies, including Scanalyse and Painchek.

“This is a great outcome for Curtin University and HiSeis. The company has grown to a point where a new set of shareholders with deep connections into mining and financial markets are required to take it to the next level,” says Rohan McDougall, Director of Commercialisation at Curtin University and HiSeis company Director.

McDougall will step down from the board, and Curtin University will retain a minority position in the company and continue to provide research support.


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