Speaker lineup at Cambridge conference features the President of Planetary Resources, a company that aims to extract metals from asteroids.
Cambridge International’s annual Vancouver investment conference moves to a new dimension this year, putting the spotlight on asteroid mining.
The lineup of speakers includes Chris Lewicki, President of Planetary Resources, a Bellevue, Wash., company that aims to mine platinum and other rare metals from asteroids in outer space.
A discussion about asteroid mining and its implications for the resource sector is a first for the Cambridge conference, which kicks off on Sunday, and is expected to attract roughly 10,000 attendees to Vancouver’s Convention Centre West.
“This is a brand new topic and they have the dollars to back this up. So Lewicki should be an interesting speaker,’’ said Cambridge House International President Jay Martin.
Due to merger activity in the resource sector and slumping stock prices, this year’s Cambridge conference will be a slightly scaled down version of its usual self. The number of companies who are prepared to pay $5,995 for booth space is expected to be 403, down from 480 in 2012.
But the 2-day event remains a key date on the mining conference calendar, an opportunity for retail investors and mineral exploration companies to gather under one roof to discuss key issues affecting the industry.
Among them is a plan by Enbridge Inc. (TSX: T.ENB, Stock Forum) to build a pipeline that would run from Edmonton, Alberta, to Kitimat on British Columbia’s northern coastline, potentially carrying 525,000 barrels of petroleum per day.
Greenpeace co-founder Rex Wyler will be on hand to debate the pros and cons of Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway pipeline with Marin Katusa, an energy strategist with Casey Research, an investment advisor and publisher.
“This is a relevant topic, one that most Canadians can relate to,’’ Martin said.
While asteroids and pipelines are likely to be the big talking points the year, the focus will remain on the performance of mineral exploration stocks and underlying commodities, such as copper, gold and uranium.
In keeping with that theme, Sprott Global Resource Investments Ltd. Chairman Rick Rule is scheduled to explain why (in his view) bear markets are best for investment bargains.
This year again, the roster of speakers includes newsletter writers John Kaiser and Lawrence Roulston.
Toronto-based stock trader and Stockscores.com founder Tyler Bollhorn has also been invited to offer advice on “how [attendees] can find market beating stocks.’’ He will be available in the Stockscores Education Pavilion from 10:00 a.m., Sunday.
Cambridge International founder Joe Martin said organizers aren’t too concerned about slumping share prices or ongoing merger and acquisition activity that tends to make potential exhibitors disappear.
“This is probably the best buying opportunity of a lifetime for junior resource investors,’’ Martin told Stockhouse. “There is no better venue to do your due diligence,’’ he added.
The conference kicks off on Sunday at 8:30 a.m., when Thom Calandra will discuss the exploration scene in Colombia, Nevada, Portugal and Quebec.