Niels Verbaan has 20 years’ experience in the Minerals Industry. He has a Master’s degree in Hydrometallurgy (McGill University, Canada) and a Master’s degree in Raw Materials Processing (Delft University, The Netherlands). Niels started his career at McGill University as a Research Assistant. He then worked at Lakefield Research (from 2000-2003). as a Project Metallurgist. From 2003-2004 he worked as an R&D Manager at Hydrometal SA in Belgium, where he was responsible for evaluating new raw materials prior to feeding these into a hydrometallurgical plant. He joined SGS in 2004 as a project metallurgist.
Niels has authored or co-authored close to 20 technical publications related to nickel laterites, minor metals, niobium, scandium and rare earth elements. He has co-authored patents related to the extraction of rare earths as well as silver, indium, gold and other rare, precious and base metals from complex ores. Since 2012 he has been involved in the organization of technical REE or Critical Metals symposia, which he chaired in 2014, 2016 and 2018. He is currently chairing the symposium dedicated to Processing of Critical Materials in 2020.
Since working for SGS, he has worked his way up to Technical and Business Development Manager, Metallurgy, where he is responsible for the development of new business opportunities specifically in the metallurgical sector within North America. In addition, this role will support the technical and business development of SGS’ global network of metallurgical labs. His areas of expertise include general metallurgical process development, the design, construction and operation of complex hydrometallurgical pilot plants, and data compilation, analysis and presentation to clients. He offers expertise in a wide range of commodities, with a strong focus on nickel laterites, vanadium, rare earth elements, scandium, niobium and minor metals.
Niels speaks fluent Dutch and English, and basic conversational French and German.