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Optica Capital Launches Rare Earths and Critical Materials ETF (NYSE: CRIT)

ETF invests in producers of government-mandated, strategically vital materials, focusing on minerals and metals deemed in critical or short supply

Optica Capital, a strategic and innovative financial firm that designs, launches and manages themed indexes, announces the launch of its first exchange-traded fund (ETF), the Rare Earths and Critical Materials ETF (NYSE: CRIT).

Tracking the EQM Rare Earths and Critical Materials Index (CRITNTR), CRIT features many of the minerals and materials deemed by governments worldwide as being critical to their economic and national security. The ETF will give investors access to growth companies that produce these critical materials, including minerals and metals that are essential in many consumer and industrial sectors. These materials are used in the manufacturing of green energy products such as electric vehicles, solar panels and wind turbines; global communications technology, including satellites, smartphones and computers; and national defense tools such as submarines and fighter jets.

“When it came to powering the planet, the 19th century was the century of coal and the 20th century was the century of oil,” said Jerry Hicks, CEO of Optical Capital. “We believe the transition to more environmentally positive measures and the vital input of certain elements means that the 21st century will undoubtedly be the century of green energy, underpinned by rare earths and critical materials. This position is the foundation of the CRIT ETF.”

The Fund is born from a recently updated United States Department of the Interior list identifying certain minerals and metals as critical to the economy, citizen well-being and national security. Optica Capital also examined similar lists from governments in the European Union, Canada and Australia.

Hicks added: “In recent weeks we have seen how vital and fragile commodity supply chains are to countries. For example, due to recent world events, the price of nickel has risen sharply and the strategic supply of rare earths has become a major topic of concern.”

The Fund also highlights the importance of the supply chain process involving rare earths and critical materials that make up some of the world’s most desired products.

“One example is electric vehicles, which have risen in popularity across the globe,” said Derek Bone, chairman of Optica Capital. “We are aiming to highlight the gaps between increasing demand and deepening shortages of the critical supply of minerals and metals like rare earths, copper, lithium and cobalt, which are heavily relied upon in the EV and battery production process. Considering that it usually takes over 10 years from the announcement of discovery to add new minerals and metals into the supply chain, we have an excellent theme for exposure to growth opportunities.”

CRIT is made up of approximately 51 companies that meet standards for the development, production and use of rare earths and critical materials. The Optica team chose companies that align with the rules of the Fund’s passive investment strategy. The Fund seeks to withstand market volatility and to have a long-term presence in portfolios. Additionally, the companies making up the ETF share a common theme of supporting the worldwide “green energy” movement.

“Gen X and millennials are major drivers of the world economy,” said Ross Denford, director of funds management at Optica Capital. “These generations were the first to support in large numbers the theme of ‘going green.’ We identified the trends and volume behind the movement.”

About Optica Capital

Optica Capital is a privately owned company based in Perth, Western Australia, a major location for the production of numerous strategic minerals and materials. Optica’s team, with decades of collective experience in corporate advisory, fund management, banking, mining and business development, works with strategic partners to deliver innovative and tailored investment products for a changing world. Optica has firsthand experience related to the supply of critical minerals and how they will shape the planet’s future. For more information on Optica Capital, please visit

Carefully consider the Fund’s investment objectives, risk factors, charges and expenses before investing. This and additional information can be found in the Fund’s full or summary prospectus, which may be obtained by visiting Read it carefully before investing or sending money.

Risk Disclosures:

Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal. There is no guarantee the Fund will achieve its stated investment objectives. In addition to the normal risks associated with investing, international investments may involve risk of capital loss from unfavorable fluctuation in currency values, from differences in generally accepted accounting principles or from social, economic or political instability in other nations. Emerging markets involve heightened risks related to the same factors as well as increased volatility and lower trading volume.

The Fund’s concentration in an industry/sector or group of industries/sectors will increase the impact of, and potential losses associated with, the risks from investing in that industry/sector or group of industries/sectors. The Fund will be sensitive to, and its performance will depend to a greater extent on, the overall condition of Rare Earth and Critical Materials Companies. In addition to the normal risks associated with investing, investments in smaller companies typically exhibit higher volatility.

The Fund is non-diversified under the 1940 Act, meaning that, as compared to a diversified fund, it can invest a greater percentage of its assets in securities issued by or representing a small number of issuers. As a result, the performance of these issuers can have a substantial impact on the Fund’s performance. The Fund is new and has limited operating history for investors to evaluate. New and smaller funds may not attract sufficient assets to achieve investment and trading efficiencies.

Exchange Traded Concepts, LLC serves as the investment advisor to the Fund. The Fund is distributed by SEI Investments Distribution Co (SIDCO). SIDCO is not affiliated with Exchange Traded Concepts, LLC, Optica Capital, or any of its affiliates.


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