- Record quarterly chrome concentrate output and increased PGM production supported by stronger pricing
- Revenues and margins continue to be healthy
- Balance sheet strengthened with cash increasing to US$80.5 million post US$10.8 million interim dividend payment
- Maintains FY2021 guidance
Johannesburg – Platinum group metals (PGMs) and chrome miner, Tharisa reported that it delivered record mining rates and tonnes processed in the third quarter ended 30 June 2021 (Q3’FY2021), supported by strong PGM and chrome pricing.
Phoevos Pouroulis, CEO of Tharisa commented that “Operationally, the third quarter was one of the strongest in the Company’s history…”
“Combined with reaching 5 million fatality free shifts and another excellent LTFIR, Tharisa remains on track to deliver safe and sustainable returns for all of our stakeholders,” he added.
The miner with operations in Zimbabwe through Karo Holdings and Salene Chrome, PGMs production (6E) was up 8.9% quarter on quarter to 39.0 Koz, (up 11.4% YoY).
Likewise, record quarterly chrome concentrate output of 379.7 kt was also achieved during the period under review, up 5.9% QoQ and 18.1% YoY.
“Revenues and margins continue to be healthy as the combination of our favourable PGM basket saw record prices, in addition to a steady increase in the pricing of our chrome concentrates,” said Pouroulis.
“These price increases are a direct result of the increase in demand for our critical metals as economies focus on rebuilding post the global pandemic.”
He highlighted that the Group’s PGM basket price was 15.6% higher quarter on quarter (Q3 2021 vs Q2 2021) and remains above US$3 000/oz at the time of writing, despite the recent decline in the rhodium price, highlighting the unique prill split benefits.
Higher chrome ore prices were also achieved in the quarter despite subdued demand owing to a reduction of ferrochrome production in China, caused by electricity control measures.
Commenting on Zimbabwe operations, Pouroulis said that, “Our new development project in Zimbabwe, Salene Chrome, is progressing well and is planned to be in production start-up before the end of the calendar year.”
Earlier in May 2021, the Group exercised an option to acquire a 100% stake in Salene Chrome, a development stage, low-cost, open-pit asset, located in the Great Dyke.
Salene Chrome was granted access to mineral-bearing tenements east and west of the Great Dyke. All in all, Salene Chrome has special grants to just over 24,000 hectares of property. The special grants have been renewed for an additional two years from February 25, 2021.
The project is located in a Special Economic Zone, which permits importing or exporting capital without any trade barriers.
Tharisa also owns a 26.8% shareholding in Karo Holdings, a PGM and base metals project giving it access to over 90 million ounces of PGM resources.
The Group has maintained guidance for FY2021 at 155 Koz to 165 Koz PGMs (6E basis) and 1.45 Mt to 1.55 Mt of chrome concentrates but, cautioned that COVID-19 remains a risk to the Company.
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