Asahi Refining is the latest brand to enter the precious metals industry, taking over for a company with 160 years of experience that decided to divest from the industry altogether. Headquartered in Japan, where it has more than 60 years of experience in the precious metals industry, Asahi Refining is moving quickly to meet the demands of investors looking for good delivery silver and gold bars.
Asahi Refining is a newly-formed division of Japan’s Asahi Holdings. The company moved in to purchase the North American precious metals refining operations of Johnson Matthey. The latter company was formed in the United Kingdom for the first time in 1802 as an individual endeavor of Percival Norton Johnson. He had established a business as a gold assayer in London at this time, but the company was not formed until 1851 when he combined with George Matthey to create a combined company.
The new Johnson Matthey firm was appointed as an Official Assayer & Refiner to the Bank of England in 1852, and has spent the last 160 years producing some of the finest gold and silver bars in the world. Johnson Matthey was one of the longest standing London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) members, with status as a Good Delivery company for both gold and silver bars.
Johnson Matthey is a multinational corporation with diverse operations that cover chemistry and sustainable technologies. In December 2014, it announced plans to divest from the silver and gold refining industry, selling its facilities in North America to Japan’s Asahi Holdings. Formed in Japan in 1952, Asahi Holdings has a diverse business line within the precious metals industry that includes the collection, recovery, and refinement of gold, silver, palladium, and platinum products.
The company already has a history of manufacturing and selling precious metal alloys, chemicals for plating, electrolytic recovery equipment, and analysis of precious metals. In March 2015, an official deal was announced between Asahi Holdings and Johnson Matthey for the former to purchase the latter at a total of $186 million (USD) in cash.
Under the terms of the deal, Asahi Holdings formed a new subsidiary known as Asahi Refining. The new refining operation was able to get up and running almost overnight by taking control of three facilities that belonged to Johnson Matthey previously. These included two operational refineries in North America; one in Salt Lake City, Utah (USA) and the other in Brampton, Ontario (Canada). A third investment casting facility in St. Catharines in Canada was also acquired, and formed as Niagara Investment Castings, a subsidiary of Asahi Refining Canada Limited.
The first silver bars to roll out of the new Asahi Refining facilities in Salt Lake City and Brampton were the Asahi 100 oz Silver Bars. These bars are eerily reminiscent of the former Johnson Matthey 100 oz Silver Bars, featuring similar dimensions and physical features.
Each of the Asahi 100 oz Silver Bars features a rustic appearance and simple design sets. The only engravings and markings on the bar are found on its obverse face. All engravings are arranged vertically from the top of the bar to the bottom. There are no fancy design features, just the Asahi Refining logo at the top and the identifying characteristics of the bar on the bottom.
At the top, the Asahi Refining logo consists of an oval with an outer rim and inner feature. The outer rim has the engraving of “Asahi SLC,” while the inner feature consists of the words “Assayers, Refiners.” At the bottom of the bar you’ll find the weight, purity, and assayer’s mark from Asahi Refining stamped into the bar.
When Asahi Holdings purchased Johnson Matthey’s gold and silver refining operations, the latter company’s LBMA Good Delivery status was automatically transferred to the newly formed Asahi Refining. This means that, assuming retesting confirms compliance with standards, Asahi Refining’s future products qualify for LBMA Good Delivery status.
In order for gold and silver bars to earn Good Delivery status, they must live up to LBMA refining and production standards. The standards are different for gold and silver, but when it comes to the latter, all products must meet the following standards:
JM Bullion makes it easy for you to purchase Asahi Silver Bars by accepting a wide variety of payment methods. You can purchase your Asahi Silver Bars today using major credit/debit cards, with the exception of American Express. Credit/debit transactions typically take one business day to process.
We also accept bank wire, PayPal, and paper check transactions. Bank wire and PayPal transfers process immediately, while paper checks take between four and six business days to process. Both bank wire and paper check transactions qualify for a 4% discount on the total purchase price. Once your transaction has processed, it is released into our shipping queue for fulfillment.
All shipments from JM Bullion are packaged in discreet boxes to protect the identity of your products during shipping. JM Bullion is proud to offer free standard shipping and insurance on all packages. If you’d like expedited shipping, it is available at an extra cost. The US Postal Service and UPS handle all shipping for JM Bullion. If your packages are lost, damaged, or stolen during shipping we’ll work with the carrier to recover your items. Short of that, we’ll provide you with replacement products or a full refund if the former is not possible.
If you have any questions about Asahi Silver Bars or our payment methods and shipping procedures, please feel free to contact us. You can reach a JM Bullion associate on the phone at 800-276-6508, connect with us in real time online using our live web chat, or submit your questions to us in an email.