Freshly-minted Delta Lithium chairman Chris Ellison has fired back at suggestions major shareholder Mineral Resources — which he is the boss of — will siphon a stream of lithium assets and deals away from Delta, while the junior seeks to dish off its gold holdings. At Delta’s annual general meeting on Wednesday, the election of Mr Ellison as chairman and MinRes lithium boss Joshua Thurlow as non-executive director both received upwards of 95 per cent of the votes in favour, emphatically confirming the duo’s formal ascension to the Delta board. The pair originally joined the board in September after MinRes nabbed a majority stake in the junior. Earlier this month, MinRes built that holding from 17.4 per cent to 19.1 per cent. Since MinRes reared its head as Delta’s largest shareholder, the latter’s share price has shed around a third of its value. Some observers have questioned whether MinRes will use its substantial influence over Delta to pry away prime lithium assets and leave the junior with the scraps. Mr Ellison batted away those suggestions when queried by a Delta shareholder at the AGM. “Be assured when I’ve got my Delta hat on I’m there for Delta and I’m going to make sure MinRes’ investment not only grows but flourishes,” he said. “If you have a look at MinRes’ track record over the last 30 years if we go and invest in something, we invest in it because we want that investment to grow and grow quickly.” Delta’s managing director James Croser said the explorer was looking for lithium acquisitions in close proximity to its two existing projects and would be “sensible” about potential overlaps in buying interest with MinRes. “We’re looking for things closer to Yinnetharra and Mt Ida to add value, so first in best dressed I’d say.” Delta’s flagship Mt Ida project also hosts a gold resource, and Mr Croser said he was “talking to our neighbours” about the sale of the mining rights for the precious metal. Mr Ellison also said Delta was “prepared to trade our gold to get some tier-1 (lithium) land.” Mt Ida is located in the Goldfields region about 220km north of Kalgoorlie. Earlier this month at MinRes’ AGM, Mr Ellison said the Goldfields was the most prospective ground in the world for hard rock lithium. “There’s certainly a lot [of lithium] down there to be found, it’s really well under-explored,” Mr Ellison said at the time. “About the middle of next year we will have probably wrapped up gathering up as much rock as we can.” In a similar vein to other comments he made at MinRes’ AGM about the miner’s ability to help lithium explorers get their projects off the ground, on Wednesday Mr Ellison touted MinRes’ credentials to assist Delta on the mining services side of the equation. “We’re probably the only mining company that I know of in Australia that can design, build and operate a lithium plant, and we can do it at a lower number than almost all of our competitors and we’ve got a huge amount of experience,” he said. Delta also counts Gina Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting as key shareholder via a 12.1 per cent stake. MinRes and Hancock both grew their holdings by taking part in Delta’s $70.2 million capital raise earlier this month.