18/02/2015 - 11:48

Independence profit surges on production

18/02/2015 - 11:48

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Gold and nickel producer Independence Group has posted a 264 per cent increase in profit for the six months to December, on the back of increased production from its Jaguar and Tropicana operations and at lower costs.

The Tropicana gold mine near Laverton.

Gold and nickel producer Independence Group has posted a 264 per cent increase in profit for the six months to December, on the back of increased production from its Jaguar and Tropicana operations and at lower costs.

The company reported a 65 per cent rise in revenue to $274.3 million and a 175 per cent increase in operating cash flow to $113.9 million.

Independence increased zinc production at its Jaguar operation near Leonora to 25,373 tonnes, up from 19,573t in the previous corresponding period, and increased copper production to 4,807t, at a lower cash cost of 23 cents per pound.

It was a similar story at the Tropicana project near Laverton, in which Independence holds a 30 per cent stake alongside majority partner AngloGold Ashanti.

Gold production ramped-up to 77,248 ounces, up from 28.485oz last year, at a lower cash cost of $549/oz.

Nickel production was down by 606t to 5,123t at the Long project in Kambalda, at a higher cash cost of $4 per pound.

Managing director Peter Bradford said the company was satisfied with the increase in revenue, profit after tax and operating cashflows being generated by all three of the operations.

“The company is essentially debt-free and generating material cash flows,” Mr Bradford said.

Independence upgraded its 2015 production guidance across all of its operations and lowered cost guidance at Long and Jaguar.

“The completion of the scheduled shutdown and the successful restart of the Jaguar mill gave us an opportunity to review our FY2015 production and cost guidance with more certainty,” Mr Bradford said.

“Tropicana, Long and Jaguar are all currently ahead of the current production and cost guidance year to date on an annualised basis.

“Based on current production and cost projections, the company believes the revised FY2015 guidance provides realistic targets for each operation in FY2015,” he said.

Independence also announced a fully franked interim dividend of 6 cents per share.

The company’s share price rose 1.4 per cent to $5.56 per share at 11:45am.

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