Northern Star Resources has exceeded its own production expectations, generating $46 million in operating cash-flow for the year, cementing its position as a highly profitable Australian gold miner with solid growth prospects.
Paulsens gold mine in Western Australia poured 75,116 ounces for the year, generating gold sales of $122 million and an operating surplus of $46 million - exceeding guidance by 15 per cent. The surplus includes $6 million in underground exploration/drilling expenditure.
The company said it had exceeded all its key production and financial targets, while at the same time generating a host of significant exploration results which will help underpin further increases in resources, production, cash-flow and mine life.
Northern Star is in the process of growing annual production at Paulsens from 80,000oz pa to 100,000oz pa by expanding the Paulsens plant and underground mine, and developing an open pit mine. It is also conducting studies to establish a standalone 100,000oz per annum operation at its neighbouring Ashburton Project which will lift company-wide production to 200,000oz per annum.
The company says that it achieved a 30% reduction in total operating cost per tonne at Paulsens during the December half with a cash cost of $659/oz and total site expenditure of $926/oz in the December quarter.
Managing director Bill Beament said the company had enjoyed an outstanding year on all fronts, delivering on all of its undertakings to the market in terms of production, cash-flow and exploration.
“In addition to the exceptional organic growth opportunities available to the company, we are also in a very strong position to take advantage of new corporate and project opportunities that present themselves in the current market.
“The company's strong balance sheet and production base enables us to write our next chapter of growth as we increase production towards 200,000oz pa”, Mr Beament said.