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Anglo American PLC (AAL)

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Friday 24 July, 2015

Anglo American PLC

Anglo American H1 2015 Results

RNS Number : 9640T
Anglo American PLC
24 July 2015
 

 

 

 

 

 

HALF YEAR FINANCIAL REPORT

 

for the six months ended 30 June 2015

 



24 July 2015

 

Anglo American Interim Results 2015

 

Improved operational performance and accelerated cost and capex reductions to mitigate price weakness

á       Group underlying EBIT(1) of $1.9 billion, a 36% decrease due to sharply weaker commodity prices ($1.9 billion(2) underlying EBIT impact), partially offset by weaker producer country currencies and cost reductions ($0.6 billion underlying EBIT benefit)(3)

á       Commodity price-driven impairments of $3.5 billion after tax, including $2.9 billion at Minas-Rio

á       Productivity improvements and indirect and capital cost reductions accelerated, with disposals being progressed:

-     $1.5 billion(4) of operating and indirect cost reductions and productivity gains targeted in H2 2015 and 2016 (operating costs $800 million, productivity gains $400 million, indirect costs $300 million)

-     Additional capital expenditure reductions of up to $1.0 billion by end 2016

-     $1.6 billion of disposal proceeds delivered in July 2015

á      Improved operational performance and cash flows delivering net debt of $13.5 billion as at 30 June 2015 (31 December 2014: $12.9 billion), with $15.0 billion of liquidity maintained. Following receipt of Lafarge Tarmac proceeds, net debt is $11.9 billion.

-     Production volumes increased by 8% (Cu eq.)(3)

-     Unit costs decreased by 5% (local currency) and 14% in US dollar terms(3)

Financial highlights

US$ million, unless otherwise stated

6 months ended

30 June 2015


6 months ended

30 June 2014


Change

Underlying EBIT(1)

1,883


2,932

(36)%

Underlying earnings(5)

904

 

1,284

(30)%

Group revenue(6)

13,346

 

16,144

(17)%

Underlying EBITDA(7)

3,280

 

4,328

(24)%

(Loss)/profit before tax(8)

(1,920)

 

2,945

-

(Loss)/profit for the financial period attributable to equity shareholders of the Company(8)

(3,015)

 

1,464

-

Underlying earnings per share (US$)(5)

0.70

 

1.00

(30)%

Dividend per share (US$)

0.32

 

0.32

-

Attributable ROCE%(9)

8%

 

10%

-

Notes to the highlights and table are shown at the bottom of this section.

 

Mark Cutifani, Chief Executive of Anglo American, said: "The transformation of Anglo American that I set out 18 months ago is progressing, despite considerable external challenges. I expect the operational turnaround to generate $1.2 billion(4) of underlying EBIT upside over the next 18 months, in addition to the $1.7 billion delivered to date. Structurally, we are focusing the portfolio around those assets that are of the scale and quality to generate most value to the Group. We expect to generate proceeds of at least $3 billion from asset sales, including the $1.6 billion received from the sale of our 50% interest in Lafarge Tarmac. We are unrelenting in enforcing strict cost and capital discipline across Anglo American, building upon the unit cost reductions delivered to date. Combined with planned capital expenditure reductions of up to $1.0 billion by end 2016, we are on track to deliver our long term net debt target of $10 billion to $12 billion, with net debt after the Lafarge Tarmac proceeds at $11.9 billion.

 

"Having defined our portfolio and significantly improved operational performance, now is the right time to accelerate the right-sizing of the organisation that supports the future business; we are targeting a $500 million(4) total cost saving, of which $300 million will be realised from our ongoing core business, through the reduction of 6,000 overhead and other indirect roles, a 46% decrease, including those that will transfer with the businesses we are divesting. Post asset sales, we expect to have reduced our number of assets from 55 to 40 and reduced total employees by 35%, while maintaining copper equivalent production. As a result, and following the asset disposals and further business improvement, our underlying EBITDA margin of 25% in the first half of 2015 would increase to 35% on a like for like basis, representing a 40% improvement off a substantially lower cost base."

 

Mark Cutifani added: "Safety performance is my first priority and I am saddened to report that we lost five colleagues in incidents in South Africa, Australia and Brazil in the first half of the year. There is no acceptable reason for us not to ensure a safe working environment for all our people and our work to consign all safety incidents to history continues with absolute determination.

 

"The first six months of 2015 saw considerable further price decreases for our products amidst a volatile market environment and economic uncertainty in certain key markets. Our work to drive yet greater operational performance and productivity has continued, with a 14% decrease in copper equivalent unit costs (in US dollar terms). Cash costs were down $600 million(3), partially offsetting the $1.9 billion underlying EBIT impact of sharply weaker commodity prices. Looking to the balance of this year and into next, I expect the current period of volatile markets and economic uncertainty, fuelled in part by pockets of geopolitical tension, to continue.

 

"Overall performance for the half year was solid and largely in line with our expectations, reflecting a number of planned or otherwise expected impacts, such as the rebuild of the nickel furnaces in Brazil and the water shortage in our Copper business in Chile. Of particular note was the performance of the Platinum business following last year's strike, with the Mogalakwena open pit delivering strong volume, productivity and unit cost improvements, while Rustenburg also showed greater productivity with its now optimised mine plan. Cost control is a major focus, particularly given our footprint in certain high inflation jurisdictions, and we recorded strong unit cost decreases in Coal and De Beers.

 

"In Iron Ore, Kumba's production volume was in line with 2014 while US dollar unit costs improved by 4%. The Kolomela mine continued to perform strongly although we have adjusted the mine plan at Sishen to reflect the current market environment and have revised Kumba's volume guidance downwards for 2015 and 2016. Taking into account the volatility in the iron ore market, and to protect against the downside, we are positioning Kumba for a $45 per tonne benchmark iron ore price by optimising the Sishen pit design and restructuring overheads and support services while preserving the life of the mine.

 

"We are taking the same approach to costs at Minas-Rio in Brazil. The ramp-up of the operation is progressing and we are now in a position to reduce targeted FOB unit costs by $5 per tonne to $28-30 per tonne once full run-rate is reached in Q2 2016. Given the significant further weakness in iron ore prices, we reviewed our near-and longer-term price assumptions at the mid-year, resulting in a $2.9 billion post-tax write down in the carrying value of Minas-Rio.

 

"Our Coal businesses in Australia and South Africa delivered a 3% underlying EBIT increase due to a combination of productivity improvements, including unit cost reductions of 13% in Australia and 3% in South Africa in local currency terms, and volume discipline in Canada.

 

"De Beers saw a continuation of the market weakness of late 2014 during the first six months of 2015, resulting in a 25% underlying EBIT decrease. In response to these market conditions, the business has revised production guidance for 2015 to 29 to 31 million carats, while continuing to focus on its operational metrics. De Beers also reduced unit costs by 10% in dollar terms.

 

"We are making fundamental changes to transform Anglo American - operationally, structurally and culturally - into a fit for purpose organisation with an enhanced resource endowment. Combined with our diversified strategy across the early, mid and late cycle demand segments, we are ensuring that the business is sustainable through the commodity price cycles, as well as shorter-term price shocks, and offers investors attractive and differentiated exposure to the mining industry."

  

 

 

 

 

Notes to the highlights and table on page 1&2

 

(1) Underlying EBIT is operating profit presented before special items and remeasurements, and includes the Group's attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' underlying EBIT. See notes 4 and 6 to the Condensed financial statements for underlying EBIT. For definition of special items and remeasurements, see note 7 to the Condensed financial statements.

(2)  Excludes De Beers.

(3)  Platinum strike underlying EBIT impact of $0.4bn included in cash cost benefit. Cu equivalent production is (2)% if adjusting for 2014 Platinum strike and excluding Peace River Coal Care & Maintenance impact. Cu equivalent unit costs adjusted for Platinum strike would be 2% increase in local currency and (7)% lower in USD.

(4)  Underlying EBIT improvement targets are broken down as follows:

- $1.5 billion of underlying EBIT benefits from the core business, broken down by:

-           $1.2 billion of operational improvements, including $0.8 billion of operating cost reductions and $0.4 billion productivity gains

-           $0.3 billion of indirect cost reductions

- Indirect costs are targeted to fall by a total of $0.5 billion, of which $0.3 billion is from core operations (above) and $0.2 billion will  be realised through the divestment of non-core assets.

(5) See note 6 and 10 to the Condensed financial statements for basis of calculation of underlying earnings.

(6)  Includes the Group's attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' revenue of $1,788 million (30 June 2014: $1,923 million). See note 4 to the Condensed financial statements.

(7) Underlying EBITDA is underlying EBIT before depreciation and amortisation in subsidiaries and joint operations, and includes the Group's attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' underlying EBITDA.

(8)  Stated after special items and remeasurements. See note 7 to the Condensed financial statements.

(9)  Attributable ROCE is based on underlying performance, and reflects realised prices and foreign exchange during the current period. Where ROCE relates to a period of less than one year, the return for the period has been annualised (with the exception of De Beers when presented as an individual business unit- see footnote on page 21).



Financial review of Group results for the six months ended 30 June 2015

 

Summary

 

Anglo American reported underlying earnings of $0.9 billion (H1 2014: $1.3 billion), with underlying EBIT decreasing by 36% to $1.9 billion.

 

Falling prices were seen across most products ($1.9 billion impact(1)), with the realised price of iron ore down 41%, platinum down 19%, copper 18% and HCC down 15%. This was partially mitigated by a solid cost performance and favourable exchange rates.

 

A strengthening of the US dollar against the South African rand and the Australian dollar more than offset the impact of CPI on the Group result ($0.4 billion favourable to underlying EBIT vs H1 2014). The Group's overall cash costs decreased in real terms as a result of cost-reduction initiatives across the Group and falling input costs such as diesel, rubber and steel.

 

Net debt increased by $0.6 billion to $13.5 billion (31 December 2014: $12.9 billion) and total capital expenditure has reduced by $0.6 billion to $2.1 billion, as expansionary projects approach completion and SIB capital expenditure is reduced. On 17 July 2015, Anglo American received $1.6 billion for its 50% interest in Lafarge Tarmac, reducing net debt to $11.9 billion.

 

The first six months of 2015 have seen significant further weakness and ongoing volatility in the prices of the bulk commodities, particularly iron ore and metallurgical coal. Anglo American has therefore reviewed its near-and longer-term commodity price assumptions at the mid-year, while also noting the gradual and ongoing reduction of consensus prices within what remains a wide range of forecasts. As a result, Anglo American has recorded non-cash impairments within special items at 30 June 2015 relating to Minas-Rio and Coal assets of $3.5 billion after tax.

 

Operational performance (production/costs)

 

Operational performance was encouraging across the majority of businesses. Total Australia and Canada coal production increased 4% despite Peace River Coal (which produced 0.9 Mt in H1 2014) being placed on care and maintenance in December 2014. Minas-Rio produced 3.0 Mt (wet basis) in H1 2015 after commencing operations in the fourth quarter of 2014 and reaching First Ore On Ship (FOOS) on 25 October 2014. In addition, total equivalent refined platinum production increased by 55%, primarily due to the non-recurrence of the industrial action which took place in 2014. In contrast, nickel production decreased by 34%, as a result of the furnace rebuild at Barro Alto. Copper production decreased by 10% largely as a result of the shutdowns of the processing plants at Los Bronces to manage water reserve levels.

 

The first half of 2015 saw a positive performance on costs. Coal Australia AUD FOB cash costs decreased by 13% due to increased productivity at underground mines and cost reductions. Copper unit costs increased by 4%, with lower volumes at Los Bronces due to water conservation measures being the primary driver. The Group continued to experience falling mining inflation, with Chile, Australia and South Africa experiencing below CPI cost inflation vs. H1 2014.

 

 

 

(1)  Excludes De Beers.

 

 

 

Income Statement

 

Underlying EBIT

 

$ million

6 months

ended

30 June 2015

6 months

ended

30 June 2014

Iron Ore and Manganese

510

1,229

Coal

267

260

Copper

174

760

Nickel

-

26

Niobium

32

34

Phosphates

41

9

Platinum

272

(1)

De Beers

576

765

Corporate and other

11

(150)

Total

1,883

2,932

 

 

Underlying Earnings

Group underlying earnings were $0.9 billion, a 31% decrease (H1 2014: $1.3 billion).

 


 


6 months ended 30 June 2015


$ million

Underlying EBIT

Net finance costs and income tax expense

Non-controlling interests

Underlying earnings






Iron Ore and Manganese

510

(192)

(178)   

 140

Coal

267

(66)

(4)   

 197

Copper

174

(70)

(42)   

 62

Nickel

-

 (2)

-   

 (2)

Niobium

32

(15)

-   

 17

Phosphates

41

(18)

-   

 23

Platinum

272

(55)

(42)   

 175

De Beers

576

(155)

(61)   

 360

Corporate and other

11

(85)

 6   

Total

1,883

(658)

(321)

 

 

Net finance costs

Net finance costs, before special items and remeasurements, excluding associates and joint ventures, were $161 million (H1 2014: $73 million). The increase was driven by lower interest income due to a reduction in cash from $8.5 billion to $7.0 billion and foreign exchange losses in the current period, primarily driven by the weakening Brazilian real, compared to gains in the comparative period.

 

Tax

The effective rate of tax, before special items and remeasurements including attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' tax, decreased from 31.5% for the six months ended 30 June 2014 and 29.8% for the year ended 31 December 2014 to 28.0%. This lower rate was due to the net impact of certain prior year adjustments, the remeasurement of withholding tax provisions across the Group and the relative levels of profits arising in our operating jurisdictions. In future periods, it is expected that the effective tax rate will remain above the United Kingdom statutory tax rate.

 

Reconciliation to (loss)/profit for the period from underlying earnings

 

 

$ million

6 months

ended

30 June 2015

6 months

ended

30 June 2014

Underlying earnings

904

1,284

Operating special items

(3,319)

(61)

Operating remeasurements

(109)

179

Non-operating special items

(155)

19

Financing special items and remeasurements

69

45

Special items and remeasurements tax

(413)

(4)

Non-controlling interests on special items and remeasurements

49

(4)

Share of associates' and joint ventures' special items and remeasurements

(41)

6

(Loss)/profit for the financial period attributable to equity shareholders of the Company

(3,015)

1,464

 

 

 

Underlying earnings per share (US$)

0.70

1.00

 

Special items and remeasurements

Special items and remeasurements primarily relate to impairments in respect of the Minas-Rio iron ore project of $2.5 billion pre-tax ($2.9 billion post-tax) and Capcoal, Peace River Coal and other assets within the Coal segment of $0.8 billion pre-tax ($0.6 billion post-tax). Full details of the special items and remeasurements charges are to be found in note 7 to the Condensed financial statements.

 

Group ROCE

Attributable ROCE declined to 8% in H1 2015 (30 June 2014: 10%) primarily as a consequence of weaker commodity prices, partially offset by improved operational performance, depreciating foreign exchange, a lower proportion of post-tax earnings attributable to non-controlling interests and lower average attributable capital employed. Average attributable capital employed decreased from $38.7 billion in 31 December 2014 to $35.5 billion in H1 2015, driven by impairments at Minas-Rio and the Coal assets, partially offset by ongoing capital expenditure.

 

Attributable ROCE is defined as annualised underlying EBIT divided by average capital employed for the period, where capital employed is net assets excluding net debt and financial asset investments, attributable to equity shareholders of Anglo American plc. It is calculated based on achieved prices and foreign exchange. Refer to page 52 for further details.

 

The previous ROCE measure, used to track the Driving Value programme, incorporated a number of adjustments, principally to reverse the impact of certain impairments and acquisition fair value adjustments. The new attributable ROCE measure has been developed to allow a clearer link to the published financial statements. Comparatives have been restated to align with the current period presentation, and capital employed by segment is disclosed in note 4 to the Condensed financial statements. The Driving Value ROCE is disclosed on page 52.

 

Net debt

Net debt (including related hedges) of $13,496 million was $625 million higher than at 31 December 2014 and $1,981 million higher than at 30 June 2014, representing gearing of 32.8% (31 December 2014: 28.6%). Net debt is made up of cash and cash equivalents of $7,033 million (31 December 2014: $6,747 million) and gross debt including related derivatives of $20,529 million (31 December 2014: $19,618 million). The increase in net debt compared with full-year 2014 was driven by capital expenditure of $2,113 million, the payment of dividends of $680 million to Company shareholders and $196 million to non-controlling interests, and interest payments of $456 million. This was partially offset by cash generated from operating activities of $2,715 million.

 

Following the issue of $3.2 billion of bonds in 2014, the Group issued further bonds of $2.2 billion consisting of $1.5 billion through accessing the US bond markets and $0.7 billion under the Euro Medium Term Note programme during the period.

 

On 17 July 2015, Anglo American received cash proceeds of $1.6 billion for its 50% interest in Lafarge Tarmac, reducing net debt from $13.5 billion at 30 June 2015 to $11.9 billion.

 

Anglo American's objective is to maintain a strong investment grade rating, which demands rigorous capital discipline. We recognise that over the next year and a half we will have limited flexibility owing to heavier capital expenditure commitments as we complete the development of Minas-Rio in Brazil, and Grosvenor in Australia, after which we expect capital expenditure to be moderated. Anglo American is targeting a long‑term net debt level of $10 billion to $12 billion.

 

Cash flow

Net cash inflows from operating activities were $2,715 million (30 June 2014: $3,510 million), a decrease of 23%, driven by the 24% decrease in underlying EBITDA. This was partially offset by reduced cash tax paid, driven by lower earnings and one-off tax payments in the prior year.

 

Outflows on working capital in the current period were $15 million (30 June 2014: inflows of $180 million). This reflected a $59 million increase in inventories primarily due to the Platinum stock adjustment ($181 million) and lower volumes sold at De Beers, as well as a $65 million decrease in creditors across a number of segments, offset by a $109 million decrease in operating receivables primarily in Platinum.

 

Net cash used in investing activities of $2,343 million (30 June 2014: $2,753 million) was primarily attributable to expenditure on property, plant and equipment of $2,035 million (30 June 2014: $2,667 million). Expenditure on property, plant and equipment has decreased by 24% against H1 2014, mainly owing to lower expenditure at Minas-Rio and lower stay‑in‑business expenditure as a result of weakening exchange rates and cost-cutting initiatives.

 

Net cash inflows from financing activities were $24 million (30 June 2014: cash outflow $39 million). This included cash receipts on issuance of bonds of $2,159 million, offset by net repayments of borrowings of $545 million, dividend payments to Company shareholders and non-controlling interests totalling $876 million, as well as interest payments of $456 million.

 

Liquidity and funding

At 30 June 2015, the Group had undrawn committed bank facilities of $7.9 billion and cash of $7.0 billion. The Group's forecasts and projections, taking account of reasonably possible changes in trading performance, indicate the Group's ability to operate within the level of its current facilities for the foreseeable future.

 

At 30 June 2015, Anglo American's ratings were Moody's Baa2 (negative outlook) and Standard & Poor's BBB- (stable outlook).

 

Dividends

An interim dividend of 32 US cents per share (30 June 2014: 32 US cents per share) has been declared.  

 

The Board

On 22 July 2015, Tony O'Neill was appointed to the Board as an executive director. Mr O'Neill joined Anglo American as Group Director - Technical in September 2013, with responsibility for mining and technology, business performance, projects and SHE (safety, health and environment). Mr O'Neill's appointment to the Board signals the Group's commitment to engineering excellence and its continuing drive to achieve best practice operational, safety and environmental performance. 

 

 

Principal risks and uncertainties

 

Anglo American is exposed to a variety of risks and uncertainties which may have a financial, operational or reputational impact on the Group, and which may also have an impact on the achievement of social, economic and environmental objectives.

 

The principal risks and uncertainties facing the Group at the year-end were set out in detail in the operating and financial review section of the Annual Report 2014 (pages 43 to 47), and have not changed significantly since. Key headline risks relate to the following:

 

á      Commodity prices

á      Liquidity risk

á      Currency risk

á      Inflation

á      Safety and health

á      Environment

á      Political, legal and regulatory

á      Operational risk and project delivery

á      Event risk

á      Employees

á      Infrastructure

á      Community relations

á      Information and cyber security

á      Portfolio restructuring

 

The Group is exposed to changes in the economic environment, as with any other business. Details of any key risks and uncertainties specific to the period are covered in the operations review section.

 

The Annual Report 2014 is available on the Group's website www.angloamerican.com.

 



Operations review for the six months ended 30 June 2015

 

In the operations review on the following pages, underlying EBIT includes the attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' EBIT and is before special items and remeasurements unless otherwise stated. Capital expenditure is defined as cash expenditure on property, plant and equipment, including related derivatives, proceeds from disposal of property, plant and equipment and direct funding for capital expenditure from non-controlling interests.

 

IRON ORE AND MANGANESE

Key performance indicators


Production

volume

Sales

volume

Price

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


Mt(1)

Mt

$/tonne(2)

$m

$m

$m

$m


Segment

n/a

n/a

n/a

2,013

693

510

829

8%

  Prior period

n/a

n/a

n/a

2,894

1,381

1,229

1,312

13%

Kumba Iron Ore

22.6

26.0

61

1,723

654

513

274

32%

  Prior period

22.8

22.5

104

2,466

1,293

1,182

305

78%

Iron Ore Brazil

3.0

2.6

50

n/a

(10)

(11)

555

(1)%

  Prior period

-

-

n/a

n/a

(6)

(9)

1,007

(0)%

Samancor(3)

1.7

1.7

n/a

290

77

36

n/a

11%

  Prior period

1.7

1.8

n/a

428

137

99

n/a

24%

Projects and Corporate

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

(28)

(28)

n/a

n/a

  Prior period

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

(43)

(43)

n/a

n/a

 

(1)    Iron Ore Brazil production is Mt (wet basis).

(2)    Prices for Kumba Iron Ore (Kumba) are the average realised export basket price (FOB Saldanha). Prices for IOB are average realised export basket price (FOB Au).

(3)  Production and sales include ore and alloy.

 

Financial and operating overview

Kumba

Underlying EBIT decreased by 57% to $513 million (H1 2014: $1,182 million), mainly attributable to the 46% fall in the iron ore benchmark price to an average of $60/tonne. Realised export prices averaged $61/tonne, which was 41% lower than in 2014. Total cash costs, however, declined by 4%, with costs associated with the 12% increase in waste mined being offset by an 11% weakening of the South African rand against the US dollar.

Record export sales of 23.2 Mt (H1 2014: 19.7 Mt) were achieved, an increase of 18%, on the back of an improved logistics performance and the shipment of 2.3 Mt through the multi-purpose terminal at the Saldanha port. As a result, Kumba reduced its stockpile at the port by 1.3 Mt, while total finished-product stocks decreased to 4.0 Mt at 30 June 2015 compared with 6.5 Mt at the 2014 year-end.

Iron Ore Brazil

First ore on ship was achieved in October 2014 and the project ramp-up is expected to continue into 2016. Total project capital expenditure remains estimated at $8.4 billion. Of that amount, $7.8 billion had been accounted for by 30 June 2015, with $0.6 billion expected to be spent to complete the project. The remaining capex mostly relates to the completion of the port breakwater, land and mine-equipment purchases, filtering expansion, beneficiation plant civil works and mechanical completion.

 

Underlying EBIT is likely to be capitalised until early 2016, by which time the Minas-Rio project is expected to have achieved 80% of its commercial production capacity. In H1 2015, Iron Ore Brazil's capitalised underlying EBIT loss was $145 million, primarily due to high unit costs being incurred in the ramp-up phase and weaker iron ore benchmark prices.

 

Samancor

Underlying EBIT decreased by 64% to $36 million, driven primarily by lower manganese prices combined with an 8% decrease in ore sales.

Markets

Iron ore

 

2015

2014

Average market prices (IODEX 62% Fe CFR China spot price - $/tonne)(1)

Average realised prices (Kumba export - $/tonne) (FOB Saldanha)

60

61

111

104

 

(1)    Different products are priced against a number of different indices in the market. IODEX 62% has been used in this instance as a generic industry benchmark against which to compare average realised prices.

 

Seaborne iron ore prices have continued the downtrend in 2015 with the IODEX 62% Fe CFR China spot price falling 46% year on year (YoY) to average $60/dmt in H1 2015. The continued rise in seaborne supply from the major supply regions (up ~6% YoY) has coincided with a slowdown in global crude steel production (down ~2% YoY), resulting in an oversupplied seaborne market. High-cost marginal suppliers are withdrawing from the market in response to the low-price environment. However, this is being offset as growth projects reach completion.

 

Manganese ore

The first half of 2015 has seen significant weakness in manganese ore prices. The 44% Mn index has fallen almost 30% since the start of the year, bringing the year-to-date average to $3.47/dmtu CIF China, down from $4.56/dmtu in 2014. Slowing global crude steel production and increased supply from low-cost sources (including South African railed volumes) have displaced marginal suppliers, while the global cost curve has also shifted downwards owing to weaker producer FX, the impact of lower oil prices on cash costs and lower ocean freight rates.

Operating performance

Kumba

Sishen's production declined by 5% to 16.1 Mt (H1 2014: 17.0 Mt) owing to mining feedstock constraints to the plants, while waste tonnes mined reached 107.7 Mt, an increase of 24% (H1 2014: 86.9 Mt). The implementation of the Operating Model in the North mine continues to improve operating equipment productivity and is now being rolled out to both the pre-strip mining and heavy mining equipment maintenance areas of the mine.

Kolomela maintained its strong performance, increasing output by 7% to 5.9 Mt (H1 2014: 5.5 Mt). Waste mined increased by 8% to 26.3 Mt (H1 2014: 24.4 Mt).

Thabazimbi produced 0.6 Mt (H1 2014: 0.3 Mt), while waste-mining volumes decreased by 45% to 8.4 Mt (H1 2014: 15.4 Mt). On 16 July 2015 Kumba announced the closure of Thabazimbi mine, as the mine has reached the end of its life.

Volumes railed to the port were 11% higher at 21.8 Mt (H1 2014: 19.7 Mt).

Phase 2 of the Dingleton project, the relocation of the 428 remaining houses, buildings and businesses, is progressing well and expected to be completed by 2016.

Iron Ore Brazil

Minas-Rio produced 3.0 Mt of iron ore (wet basis), marginally behind the original ramp-up schedule due to early adjustments required at the filtration plant. A remediation plan has now been put in place and the operation has experienced a rise in productivity and in plant and machinery availability. The pace of production increased towards the end of the second quarter and 2015 guidance is unchanged at 11 Mt to 14 Mt (wet basis). Export sales of all products in H1 amounted to 2.6 Mt on a wet basis.

Samancor

Production of manganese ore has remained consistent at 1.6 Mt (attributable basis). However, production volumes were impacted in Q2 by planned shutdowns in the South African operations combined with unplanned industrial action. The decrease in production in South Africa was slightly offset by an improvement in the Australian operations, where production benefited from improved ore recovery and plant utilisation.

Production of manganese alloys decreased by 8% to 126,200 tonnes (attributable basis) as a result of the suspension of operations at Metalloys in South Africa.

Operational outlook

Kumba

Given the weaker outlook and volatility in the iron ore market, Kumba is reducing its cash costs and positioning itself for $45/tonne (assumed lump premium of $0.20/dmtu) benchmark iron ore price (62% Fe CFR China). This has led to the company undertaking a number of interventions, including reducing overhead costs, maintaining a strong focus on capital discipline, reconfiguring the operations by revising the mine plans at Sishen and Kolomela, and maintaining the focus on product quality.

Sishen's life-of-mine (LoM) plan has been reconfigured and optimised for cash flow in the near-term (2015 to 2017). The waste target for 2015 has been revised down to 200 Mt from 240 Mt, with a ramp-up to 230 Mt from 2018. The production outlook has been moderated to 33 Mt for 2015, 36 Mt in 2016 and 2017 and rising to 38 Mt thereafter. The average LoM stripping ratio remains at 3.9.

Kolomela is expected to produce in excess of 11 Mt in 2015, with production expected to ramp up to 13 Mt within the next two years. Kolomela's waste profile has also been optimised to conserve cash. Mining will now concentrate on two primary pits, with the third pre-stripping pit being rephased to 2019. As a result, waste tonnages are being reduced from 42 Mt - 46 Mt to 35 Mt - 38 Mt over the next three years, with waste of 35 Mt planned for 2015. The LoM stripping ratio has been maintained at 3.1.

Capital expenditure has been reduced accordingly and rephased to conserve cash, with a significant reduction in stay-in-business capital of $675 million over the next three years. Deferred stripping has been reduced by $170 million over the next three years, mainly due to the revised waste-mining profile at Sishen.

Iron Ore Brazil

Iron ore production of between 11 Mt and 14 Mt (wet basis) is expected in 2015. Nameplate capacity of 26.5 Mt is expected to be reached by Q2 2016, with production of between 24 Mt and 26 Mt (wet basis) expected in 2016.

In response to the current pricing environment, Iron Ore Brazil's cost base is under review, with cost-efficiency and reduction programmes in place.

FOB cost guidance for the operation at steady state has been revised to $28 - $30/tonne, principally due to the weaker Brazilian real. Unit costs achieved in H1, however, were above this target, as expected during a ramp-up period.

 



COAL

Key performance indicators


Production volume

Sales

volume

Price

Revenue

Underlying EBITDA

Underlying EBIT

Capex

ROCE


Mt

Mt

$/tonne(1)

$m

$m

$m

$m


Segment

47.9

50.7

n/a

2,608

589

267

416

10%

 Prior period

48.5

48.0

n/a

2,856

638

260

436

8%

Australia/Canada

16.3

16.4

100

1,271

324

101

379

6%

 Prior period

15.7

15.7

117

1,509

307

18

403

0%

South Africa

25.7

28.5

60

1,000

182

129

37

20%

 Prior period

26.9

26.8

75

 975

 227

 178

33

28%

Colombia

5.9

5.8

58

 337

 107

 61

n/a

14%

 Prior period

5.9

5.5

67

 372

 135

 95

n/a

19%

Projects/corporate

n/a

n/a

n/a

 n/a  

(24)

(24)

n/a

n/a

 Prior period

n/a

n/a

n/a

 n/a  

(31)

(31)

n/a

n/a

 

(1)  Australia and Canada is the weighted average metallurgical coal sales price achieved. South Africa is the weighted average export thermal coal price achieved.

Financial and operating overview

Australia and Canada

Australia and Canada recorded an underlying EBIT of $101 million, an increase of $83 million over the same period last year. The overall increase in underlying EBIT reflected significant cost reductions of $141 million and a weaker AUD impact of $181 million. A 14% reduction in the average quarterly hard coking coal (HCC) benchmark coal price reduced underlying EBIT by $236 million and was partially mitigated by higher production volumes. All operations have lowered local currency unit costs, with underground operations reducing by 22% and open cut operations by 5%. Placing Peace River Coal into care and maintenance benefited H1 2015 EBIT by $38 million.

 

South Africa

South Africa's underlying EBIT of $129 million on a like for like basis was 17% lower (excluding $22 million of profit from the sale of a block of Coal Resources in H1 2014). This was due to a 20% reduction in the export thermal coal price, which had a $132 million negative impact, partially offset by increased sales volumes and cost reductions of $48 million and the benefit of a weaker rand to the value of $63 million.

 

Local currency FOB cash unit costs at export mines decreased by 3%, with improved productivity and cost reductions in labour, including contractors, and maintenance.

Colombia

Underlying EBIT declined by 36% to $61 million, mainly owing to weaker prices reducing underlying EBIT by $40 million, offset in part by higher sales volumes, lower costs as a result of a detailed cost-control programme and favourable exchange rates.

Markets

Metallurgical coal

 

2015

2014

Average market prices ($/tonne)(1)

Average realised prices ($/tonne, FOB)(2)

113

100

132

117

 

(1)  Represents the quarterly average benchmark for premium low-vol hard coking coal.

(2)    Average realised price of various grades of metallurgical coal including hard and semi-soft coking coal and PCI coal.

 

Metallurgical coal prices saw a decline in the first half of 2015, driven mainly by a sharp reduction in Chinese imports as a result of the imposition of quality standards testing. This diverted material into other markets and impacted both spot and contract prices. Spot prices fell from $113/tonne at the beginning of 2015 to a multi-year low of $85/tonne in May (TSI Premium HCC FOB AUS $/tonne), before recovering slightly by the end of the half, averaging $99/tonne in H1 2015, down from $120/tonne in H1 2014. Demand from India continues to rise, although not enough to absorb the excess supply. High-cost supply has started to exit the market with US supply contracting 13% YoY to May in 2015, while supply from Australia has been relatively stable.

Thermal coal

 

2015

2014

Average market price ($/tonne, FOB Australia)

Average realised prices - Export Australia ($/tonne, FOB)

Average realised prices - Export South Africa ($/tonne, FOB)

Average realised prices - Domestic South Africa ($/tonne)

Average realised prices - Colombia ($/tonne, FOB)

63

61

60

18

58

76

81

75

19

67

 

Thermal coal prices were in line with where they finished in 2014 - averaging around $62/tonne FOB (for Newcastle and Richards Bay) in H1 2015. Overall, soft demand has prevailed in the first half, driven predominantly by a drop-off in Chinese import demand. India continues to increase imports, albeit at a slower pace than previously seen. On the supply side, Indonesian volumes are being withdrawn from the market in response to the overall weak demand.

Operating performance

Australia and Canada

Total coal production increased by 4% despite Peace River Coal (which produced 0.9 Mt in the first half of 2014) being placed on care and maintenance in December 2014. Total Australian production increased by 10%, benefiting from a strong performance at the underground longwall operations.

 

In Australia, export metallurgical coal production increased by 3%, with increases from the underground operations offsetting lower open cut volumes, which were affected by Cyclone Marcia. Production of export thermal coal increased by 60%, reflecting higher volumes at all thermal producing operations and a change in product mix at Dawson.

 

Underground operation production increased by 29%, largely through a step-change in productivity at Capcoal's Grasstree underground operation. Moranbah production increased by 26% as there was a longwall move in H1 2014 and the impacts of the equipment design issues, scheduled for rectification in Q3 2015, have been tightly managed through the current longwall panel.

 

Production at the Australian open cut operations increased by 3%, with strong output from Callide and Foxleigh partly offsetting lower production at Dawson owing to the effects of Cyclone Marcia, as well as lower volumes at Capcoal, where plant and rail capacity was prioritised for Capcoal's Grasstree underground operation's higher margin coal.

South Africa

Trade production increased by 4%, with an 11% increase from underground operations more than offsetting a 6% decrease from open cut operations. Export production totalled 8.6 Mt, a 4% increase, driven by productivity improvements across all trade mines.

 

The 11% underground production increase was underpinned by productivity improvements following the implementation of the Management Operation System at Goedehoop and Zibulo, which together more than compensated for the planned closure of one section at Goedehoop.

 

Open cut production was affected by industrial action at Kleinkopje, as well as the challenges associated with the ageing of the current Coal Reserve at Mafube. This was partly offset by a 15% increase in output at Landau, arising mainly from productivity improvements initiated at the mine.

 

Domestic production at 14.6 Mt decreased by 10%, primarily owing to Eskom reducing offtake from New Vaal and New Denmark, exacerbated by unplanned maintenance in Q2 on the dragline at Isibonelo.

 

Colombia

Anglo American's share of Cerrej-n's output of 5.9 Mt increased by 1% as the operation benefited from productivity improvements to its waste-hauling trucks and favourable weather conditions.

Operational outlook

Australia and Canada

Metallurgical coal production in 2015 is expected to remain broadly flat at 20.0 Mt to 21.0 Mt as the increase in output from Capcoal's Grasstree underground operations will be offset by Peace River Coal having been placed onto care and maintenance and an extended longwall move at Moranbah in Q3 in order to rectify the equipment design issues.

 

South Africa

Export production is expected to be approximately 17.5 Mt to 18.0 Mt in 2015, as productivity improvement benefits compensate for the challenges associated with the ageing of the current Coal Reserves. Export thermal coal sales will be 1.0 Mt to 1.5 Mt higher than production due to the planned drawdown of 2014 closing stock.

 

Colombia

Anglo American's share of production is expected to be approximately 11.5 Mt, subject to weather and market conditions.



BASE METALS & MINERALS

 

COPPER

Key performance indicators


Production volume

Sales

volume

Realised price

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


kt

kt

c/lb

$m

$m

$m

$m


Copper

356

344

253

1,836

537

174

309

5%

  Prior period

396

388

307

2,555

1,106

760

312

22%

Financial and operating overview

Copper recorded an underlying EBIT of $174 million, a decrease of $586 million. The decrease in underlying EBIT was largely due to a 14% decline in the average LME copper price, as well as declines in by-product prices, which impacted revenue by $437 million. In addition, an 11% decrease in sales volumes further impacted revenue by $274 million. The decrease in revenue was partially mitigated by a $149 million reduction in underlying operating costs due to cost management initiatives and productivity improvements. At 30 June 2015, 173,600 tonnes of copper were provisionally priced at 261 c/lb resulting in a negative underlying EBIT adjustment of $133 million, versus a negative underlying EBIT adjustment of $64 million for H1 2014.

Markets

 

2015

2014

Average market prices (c/lb)

Average realised prices (c/lb)

269

253

314

307

 

LME copper prices came under renewed pressure in late H1 2015 after recovering from January lows, averaging 269 c/lb. Funds turned bearish, as uncertainty over Greece's and China's economy persisted. Demand growth in China, responsible for over 45% of copper consumption, was sluggish in H1. In contrast, global refined production has grown and mine supply has advanced as expansion programmes continue.

Operating performance

Production at Los Bronces was 192,100 tonnes, a 13% decrease due to lower throughput following the shutdowns of the Plant 1 and Confluencia processing plants for 79 days and 11 days respectively in order to manage water-reserve levels. This was partially offset by higher grades, with a net impact on production of c.28,000 tonnes. In Santiago, there was no rain during June, a record, while total precipitation levels in H1 2015 were only 10% of an average year, with only 5.6 millimetres of rainfall. The expected water-supply constraints were taken into account in the mining and processing plans for the year, which include actively managing the use of both plants. Additional water-efficiency and supply projects were implemented during the period. Full-year production is still partially dependent on weather conditions in H2.

 

Anglo American's share of Collahuasi's production of 95,300 tonnes decreased by 10%. This was mainly due to lower ore feed, as a result of planned primary crusher and SAG 3 maintenance, as well as speed restrictions imposed on the two smaller processing lines in the second quarter following the detection of vibrations. This issue is being addressed during the second half of 2015.

 

Production at El Soldado decreased by 11% to 16,200 tonnes due to expected lower ore availability arising from the previously reported intersection with a geological fault. Production from AA Norte increased by 4% in aggregate to 52,800 tonnes following operational improvements, despite the effects of heavy rainfall interrupting operations during the last week of March 2015.

Operational outlook

Production levels are planned to increase over the remainder of the year as plant operating times increase at both Los Bronces and Collahuasi. As stated above, full-year production volumes will be affected by the weather to some extent. Full-year production guidance remains unchanged at 720,000 to 750,000 tonnes.


NICKEL

Key performance indicators


Production volume

Sales

volume

Realised price

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


t

t

c/lb

$m

$m

$m

$m


Nickel

13,000

16,100

568

61 

4

0

(17)

0%

  Prior period

19,800

18,900

694

76 

30

26

(25)

3%

 

Financial and operating overview

Nickel's underlying EBIT of $0 million was $26 million lower (H1 2014: $26 million profit). This reflected a prior-year $26 million favourable non-cash balance sheet gain as a result of a weakening in the Venezuelan bolivar (relating to remaining Loma de N'quel creditors), as well as a lower pricing environment and inflation, partly offset by favourable exchange rates.

 

Underlying EBIT from the Barro Alto project continues to be capitalised as the asset is not yet in commercial production. Barro Alto's underlying operating loss, before capitalisation, was $12 million, a $101 million decrease (H1 2014: $89 million profit). This reflected the impact of the ongoing furnace rebuild and consequent lower production volume, lower nickel prices and an unfavourable non-cash exchange-rate loss in 2015. Capitalisation is expected to cease around the end of this year, although this remains under review in relation to the progress being made on the furnace rebuilds and subsequent ramp-ups.

Markets

 

2015

2014

Average market price (c/lb)

Average realised price (c/lb)

620

578

749

716

 

The average LME nickel cash settlement price during H1 2015 decreased by 17% YoY to 620 c/lb (2014 H1: 749 c/lb). Commodity prices were pressured downward by low oil prices and slower Chinese economic growth. Lower economic activity meant weaker stainless steel and nickel demand in Q1, which had a negative impact on LME stock levels (which grew higher) and LME nickel prices. Nickel pig iron production in China continued to decline due to the ongoing Indonesian nickel ore ban. This led to an improvement in ferro-nickel market fundamentals and a decrease in ferro-nickel discounts.

Operating performance

Nickel production decreased by 34%, as a result of the furnace rebuild at Barro Alto. The Furnace 2 rebuild was concluded ahead of schedule, with first metal tapped in April 2015 and production is now at nameplate capacity (throughput 1.2 million tonnes per year for each furnace, equivalent to an average of c.18,000 tonnes of nickel per furnace for the first ten years). The Furnace 1 rebuild commenced ahead of schedule given the successful completion of Furnace 2, and is expected to complete in October 2015. Codemin production increased by 4%, driven by the postponement of annual roof maintenance to Q3 2015.

Operational outlook

Nickel production guidance has been increased as a result of the improved Barro Alto furnace project performance to date, and is now expected to be between 25,000 and 30,000 tonnes for the full year.



NIOBIUM

Key performance indicators


Production volume

Sales

volume

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


t

t

$m

$m

$m

$m


Niobium

2,934

2,845

79

35

32

13

12%

  Prior period

2,225

2,297

90

37

34

90

16%

Financial and operating overview

Niobium's underlying EBIT decreased by 6% to $32 million (H1 2014: $34 million), mainly due to higher inflation and lower production, partially offset by favourable exchange rates.

 

Underlying EBIT from Boa Vista Fresh Rock (BVFR) is capitalised as the asset is not yet in commercial production. BVFR reported an underlying operating loss of $1 million.

Markets

Overall exports for ferro-niobium increased in H1 2015 by 10%, mainly due to stronger demand in China and a recovery of the steel industry in Europe. The growth was partly offset by weaker demand from the US steel industry. Despite the overall increase in demand, the global average $/kg price for ferro-niobium softened by 9% compared with H1 2014 owing to an unfavourable EUR/USD exchange rate (European contracts commonly being denominated in Euro) and weaker demand from the US steel sector.

Operating performance

Production increased by 32% to 2,934 tonnes. This was due to the start-up of the BVFR project, which has now reached 95% of nameplate throughput capacity of 1.47 million tonnes per year and 68% of nameplate recovery of 56%.

Operational outlook

Production from existing operations is expected to increase to 6,800 tonnes once BVFR has completed its ramp-up.

 

PHOSPHATES

Key performance indicators


Fertiliser production volume

Fertiliser sales volume

Price

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


kt

kt

$/tonne(1)

$m

$m

$m

$m


Phosphates

513

526

486

215

52

41

12

24%

  Prior period

543

508

475

215

20

9

17

5%

 

(1)    Average market price ($/tonne) MAP CFR Brazil - this is calculated as the average of pricing in each month in the period, which in turn is set for each month based on the price published in the first week of the previous month. This is a change from the 2014 interim report which reported the average of all days in the period.

Financial and operating overview

Phosphates reported underlying EBIT of $41 million, a $32 million increase, mainly due to higher sales prices, greater sales volumes and lower expenditure on study costs, partly offset by inflation and higher cash costs.

Markets

The average MAP CFR Brazil price in the first six months of 2015 was $486 per tonne, slightly higher than in H1 2014, mainly as a result of global supply constraints. In Brazil, demand for phosphate fertilisers from January to June totalled approximately 4.5 million tonnes, a 13% decrease, mainly as a result of lower demand for corn mini-crop, wheat and sugar cane, as well as lower anticipated deliveries for the main crop.

Operating performance

Production of 513,000 tonnes of fertiliser represented a 6% decrease, mainly as a result of rescheduled plant maintenance.

Operational outlook

Full-year fertiliser production is expected to be broadly similar to 2014.



PLATINUM

Key performance indicators


Equivalent refined production volume

Sales

volume

Price

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE


koz

koz

$/Pt oz(1)

$m

$m

$m

$m


Platinum

1,108

1,159

2,157

 2,612

521

272

179

7%

  Prior period

715

1,045

2,474

2,718

231

(1)

244

(0)%

 

(1)    Average US$ basket price.

Financial and operating overview

Underlying EBIT increased by $273 million to $272 million (H1 2014: $(1) million). The increase in underlying EBIT was due to improved operational performance following the 2014 strike, higher sales volumes than in H1 2014, the weakening of the South African rand against the US dollar, and an annual stock adjustment which improved underlying EBIT by $181 million (H1 2014: $(5) million, see note 2). The comparative period in 2014 was affected by the five-month industrial action in South Africa, which had a material impact on production and sales.

 

Year on year cash operating costs per equivalent refined platinum ounce decreased by 30% to R19,386 per ounce, owing primarily to the impact of the industrial action on costs in the first half of last year. On a 2014 financial year strike-adjusted unit-cost basis, cash operating costs per equivalent refined platinum ounce increased owing to employment and electricity costs.

Markets


2015

2014

Average platinum market price ($/oz)

Average palladium market price ($/oz)

Average rhodium market price ($/oz)

Average gold market price ($/oz)

US$ basket price - ($/Pt oz)

Rand basket price - (ZAR/Pt oz)

1,160

773

1,111

1,206

2,157

25,748

1,437

779

1,077

1,291

2,474

26,493

 

The average US dollar basket price per platinum ounce sold decreased by 13% in H1 2015 to $2,157 as a period of dollar strength has weighed on all commodities. This occurred despite a supportive demand environment, with western European vehicle sales increasing by 8% in H1 2015 versus H1 2014. Platinum production from South Africa has ramped back up after the prolonged industrial action that ended in June 2014; supply, however, remains below 2013 levels. Growth expectations in supply from recycling have been revised down owing to evidence of autocatalyst scrap hoarding and a decline in jewellery recycling in China. Platinum and palladium markets are expected to remain in deficit, with the opportunity for increased rhodium demand should automakers seek to secure cost benefits associated with higher use in petrol autocatalysts.

Operating performance

Total equivalent refined platinum production rose by 55% to 1,108,000 ounces (2014: 715,000 ounces). The increase in production was due to a strong mining performance at Mogalakwena and Rustenburg, as well as a return to normal production following 2014's industrial action.

 

Mogalakwena mine, which was unaffected by strike action, continued its strong operational performance, with an increase in production resulting from higher head grade (3.13 g/t4e vs 3.07g/t4e), an increase in total tonnes mined and greater concentrator throughput. Tonnes mined rose by 4% owing to increased utilisation and improved fleet-availability management. On-mine production of equivalent refined production increased by 10% to 190,000 ounces, while toll concentrating activities at a third-party concentrator yielded 11,000 ounces. As a result, unit cost per equivalent refined platinum ounce decreased by 7% to R16,478 per platinum ounce.

 

Production at Amandelbult increased by 148,000 ounces year on year to 182,000 ounces, but was 12% down on a strike-adjusted basis, owing to section 54 safety stoppages and municipal water-supply issues.

 

Rustenburg had a strong production performance, with output up by 177,000 ounces to 237,000 ounces, largely driven by the recovery from the industrial action, as well as improved productivity and the implementation of the optimised mine plan.

 

Despite safety stoppages, Union mine also recovered well, producing 62,000 ounces, an increase of 51,000 ounces. Union's continued focus is on ensuring it improves performance in line with its optimised mine plan.

 

Section 54 safety stoppages have impacted production in the period across almost all operations. The Principal and Chief Inspectors have been engaged to ensure the impact of these notices can be limited and that Section 54s are used as a last resort by the regulator.

 

Unki mine in Zimbabwe produced 32,000 ounces of equivalent refined platinum, a 6% increase. Only 23,000 ounces of concentrate were dispatched to Polokwane smelter, however, owing to Platinum's suspension, from 10 April this year, of exports of concentrate from Zimbabwe while negotiations took place with the government over export taxes. Following the agreement reached to postpone the taxes, the export of concentrate recommenced on 3 July 2015.

 

Output from the Joint Venture Operation portfolio production decreased by 4% to 355,000 ounces - again on account of section 54 safety stoppages as well as lower headgrades.

 

Refined platinum production increased by 29% to 1,103,000 ounces (H1 2014: 856,000 ounces) due to a return to normal production following the 2014 strike.

 

In line with the return to normal production levels, refined palladium output also increased by 33%, while refined production of rhodium increased by 30%.

 

Sales volumes exceeded production volumes, increasing by 11%.

Operational outlook

 

Equivalent refined Platinum production in H2 2015 will be higher than H1 2015 in line with the Platinum's normal seasonal production profile. It is estimated that Platinum will produce and sell within the guided range of 2.3 million and 2.4 million platinum ounces in 2015.

 

Due to the nature of the escalation of costs during the second half of the year, it is estimated that cash unit costs will approximate R19,250 to R19,750 per equivalent refined ounce for 2015.

 



DE BEERS


Production

 volume(1)

Consolidated Sales

Volume(2)

Price(3)

Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex

ROCE(4)


'000 carats

'000 carats

$/ct

$m

$m

$m

$m


15,628

13,323

206

3,021

792

576

363

12%

16,046

18,138

192

3,823

983

765

311

11%

 

(1)    Represents diamond production on a 100% basis and is not directly comparable to consolidated sales volumes.

(2)    Sales volumes (100% basis) were 14.0 million carats in H1 2015 (H1 2014: 19.0 million carats).

(3)    Average realised price.

(4)    Underlying EBIT used in the calculation of De Beers' attributable return on capital employed is based on the last 12 months rather than on an annualisation of the first six months' performance. This is due to the seasonal sales and underlying EBIT profile of De Beers.

Financial and operational overview

De Beers' underlying EBIT decreased by 25% to $576 million (H1 2014: $765 million). This was due primarily to softer rough diamond demand, resulting in weaker revenue, which was partly offset by lower operating costs and favourable exchange rates. Unit costs declined by approximately 10% in comparison with H1 2014, with the effects of inflation being more than offset by foreign exchange benefits and cost control.

 

Total sales decreased by 21% to $3.0 billion (H1 2014: $3.8 billion), with rough diamond sales decreasing by 21% to $2.7 billion. Lower rough diamond revenue reflected a 27% reduction in consolidated sales volumes to 13.3 million carats (H1 2014: 18.1 million carats). Average realised diamond prices increased by 7% to $206/carat (H1 2014: $192/carat) owing to the sale of a stronger product mix, despite a 4% lower average rough price index for the period.

 

In response to prevailing market conditions, De Beers has utilised operational flexibility at some mines to make marginal adjustments to production plans. Production costs and overheads are being tightly managed in order to minimise the profit impact of the lower sales.

Markets

Consumer demand for diamond jewellery (measured in US dollar terms) slowed towards the end of 2014 and into the first half of 2015, driven by slower global economic growth, a weaker than expected Q1 in the US (weather related) and dollar strength. Diamond jewellery retailers experienced lower than expected sales growth over this period, which led to polished stock build-up and, accordingly, weaker polished diamond purchases from the midstream and a decline in polished prices. This, combined with liquidity and working capital challenges, has put pressure on midstream finances, negatively affecting rough diamond sales in the first half of the year.

 

Rough diamond demand in the second half of the year will be dependent upon the level of retailer restocking that takes place in preparation for the main jewellery selling season in the fourth quarter. In the meantime, working capital concerns in the midstream are likely to cause some short-term volatility in rough diamond demand.

 

Global demand for diamond jewellery (in US dollar terms) is predicted to be stable in 2015. Downside risks remain, especially related to diamond jewellery demand growth in China, as the country grapples with slower economic growth and asset price challenges.

Operating performance

Mining and manufacturing

De Beers' half-year production decreased by 3% to 15.6 million carats (H1 2014: 16.0 million carats). This was mainly attributable to lower grades and reduced plant availability at Orapa. In addition, operational flexibility at the Venetia and Jwaneng tailings treatment plants was utilised to reduce production marginally in response to softer trading conditions.

 

Debswana's production decreased by 4% to 11.5 million carats mainly as a result of lower production at Orapa, offset by a 17% increase in output at Jwaneng on the back of more consistent production and resultant improved volumes at lower unit costs. Jwaneng Cut-8 waste mining continues to progress well, with 60% of the 500 Mt of waste stripping required to expose the ore now complete. Cut-8 will become Jwaneng's main source of ore in 2018.

 

In South Africa, production at DBCM increased by 3%, mainly due to higher production at Kimberley as a result of improved plant efficiencies and improved resource performance.

 

Production in Namibia decreased slightly, as higher grades and throughput at the marine operations were offset by lower grades and throughput at the land operations, largely as a result of short-term industrial action. The construction of a new evaluation vessel for Debmarine Namibia is progressing well, with delivery expected in 2017. In July, De Beers and the Government of the Republic of Namibia announced agreement, in principle, on the terms of a new 10-year sales agreement for the sorting, valuing and sales of all of Namdeb Holdings' diamonds (production from Namdeb and Debmarine Namibia).

 

In Canada, productivity improvements were partially offset by reduced grade at both Victor and Snap Lake. Victor's grade was lower because of the scheduled mining of a lower-grade area in line with the mine plan. Snap Lake's grade reduced as a consequence of mining through a complex portion of the orebody; the effect of this was accentuated by the challenges of storing water pending amendment of the mine's discharge-water permit conditions. A temporary amendment to the relevant conditions is now in place.

 

Element Six experienced challenging trading conditions in H1 2015, due primarily to pressure on revenues arising from the sharp contraction in activity in the oil and gas drilling sector. Other key markets continue to develop well, in particular those servicing the consumer electronics, automotive and aerospace markets. The adverse impact of lower revenue on profitability was partially offset by a cost-containment programme (including a targeted restructuring programme) and favourable foreign exchange rates. The previously announced manufacturing footprint optimisation programme is progressing well and according to plan.

Projects

Construction of the Venetia underground mine in South Africa continues to progress well, with the production and services shaft pre-sink both complete. The project is 18% complete and remains on track for first production in 2021. In Canada, the Gahcho KuŽ project in the Northwest Territories is also making good progress. The project is 62% complete and is on track for first production during H2 2016.

Brands

Forevermark continues to expand; the number of retail outlets where the brand has a presence has increased by 13% over the last 12 months and it is now available in more than 1,600 retail outlets in 35 markets. Inscription and grading volumes have also increased as Forevermark increases penetration into the key growth markets of China and India. In March 2015, Forevermark opened a new inscription and grading facility in Surat, India, which has the potential to process up to $500 million worth of diamonds annually.

De Beers Diamond Jewellers maintains its portfolio focus on fast-growing markets, with 36 stores (of which 13 are franchises) in 12 key consumer markets around the world.

Operational outlook

Given the challenges faced in the midstream during the first half of 2015, rough diamond demand is likely to remain constrained for the year as a whole, with demand conditions in the second half of the year dependent upon the level of retailer restocking that takes place.

The continued strength of the US dollar, coupled with lower consumer diamond demand growth in China, is likely to lead to stable global diamond jewellery demand for the full year. In the mid- to long-term, the prospects for the industry remain positive as the rise in the world's middle class is expected to underpin stronger growth in demand for diamonds, outstripping growth in production.

Production guidance for 2015 has been revised to 29 to 31 million carats (on a 100% basis), subject to trading conditions.



CORPORATE AND OTHER

Key performance indicators


Revenue

Underlying

EBITDA

Underlying

EBIT

Capex


$m

$m

$m

$m

Segment

901

57

11

9

Prior period

917

(98)

(150)

15

Other Mining and Industrial

899

108

62

2

Prior period

914

58

11

2

Exploration

-

(71)

(71)

-

Prior period

-

(75)

(76)

-

Corporate activities and unallocated costs

2

20

20

7

Prior period

3

(81)

(85)

13

Financial and operating overview

Other Mining and Industrial

Underlying EBIT of $62 million represented a significant improvement of $51 million, mainly attributable to a stronger performance from the Lafarge Tarmac joint venture.

Lafarge Tarmac joint venture

Anglo American's share in the underlying EBIT of the joint venture was $60 million, a $39 million increase. Improved market conditions, combined with operating efficiencies and savings in input costs, led to improved margins and cash generation. The outlook for the UK construction market remains positive for H2 2015.

 

Following the announcement on 7 July 2014 of an agreement in principle, the Group reached a binding agreement on 24 July 2014 to sell its 50% ownership interest in Lafarge Tarmac Holdings Limited (Lafarge Tarmac) to Lafarge SA (Lafarge) for a minimum value of £885 million in cash, on a debt and cash-free basis, and subject to other customary working capital adjustments.

 

On 17 July 2015, Anglo American announced that it had completed the sale of its 50% ownership interest in Lafarge Tarmac to Lafarge. Anglo American has received cash proceeds of approximately £992 million ($1,559 million), constituting the agreed minimum consideration of £885 million set out in the July 2014 binding agreement and approximately £107 million of working capital and other adjustments, subject to certain post-closing adjustments.

Exploration

Anglo American exploration expenditure of $71 million represented a decrease of 5%, following reductions in diamonds, iron ore and nickel exploration costs. Decreases are mainly attributable to an overall reduction in drilling activities.

Corporate activities and unallocated costs

Underlying EBIT was a $20 million gain, an increase of $105 million. This is primarily due to lower claims and settlements in the captive insurance company in 2015 compared to the prior year.



For further information, please contact:

 

Media

 

Investors

UK

James Wyatt-Tilby

Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8759

 

UK

Paul Galloway

Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8718

 

Emily Blyth

Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8481

 

 

Edward Kite

Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 2178

South Africa

Pranill Ramchander

Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2592

 

Shamiela Letsoalo

Tel: +27 (0)11 638 3112

 

Sarah McNally

Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8747

 

Notes to editors:

Anglo American is a global and diversified mining business that provides the raw materials essential for economic development and modern life. Our people are at the heart of our business. It is our people who use the latest technologies to find new resources, plan and build our mines and who mine, process and move and market our products - from bulk commodities and base metals to precious metals and diamonds (through De Beers) - to our customers around the world. Our diversified portfolio of products spans the economic development cycle and, as a responsible miner, we are the custodians of precious resources. We work together with our key partners and stakeholders to unlock the long-term value that those resources represent for our shareholders, but also for the communities and countries in which we operate - creating sustainable value and making a real difference. Our mining operations, growth projects and exploration and marketing activities extend across southern Africa, South America, Australia, North America, Asia and Europe.

www.angloamerican.com

 

     

 

Webcast of presentation: 

A live webcast of the results presentation, starting at 9.00am UK time on 24 July 2015, can be accessed through the Anglo American website at www.angloamerican.com

 

Note: Throughout this results announcement, '$' denotes United States dollars and 'cents' refers to United States cents; underlying EBIT is operating profit presented before special items and remeasurements and includes the Group's attributable share of associates' and joint ventures' underlying EBIT; special items and remeasurements are defined in note 7 to the Condensed financial statements. Underlying earnings, is calculated as set out in note 10 to the Condensed financial statements. Underlying EBITDA is underlying EBIT before depreciation and amortisation in subsidiaries and joint operations and includes the Group's attributable share of underlying EBITDA of associates and joint ventures before depreciation and amortisation. Tonnes are metric tons, 'Mt' denotes million tonnes and 'kt' denotes thousand tonnes, unless otherwise stated.

 

Forward-looking statements:

This announcement includes forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts included in this announcement, including, without limitation, those regarding Anglo American's financial position, business and acquisition strategy, plans and objectives of management for future operations (including development plans and objectives relating to Anglo American's products, production forecasts and reserve and resource positions), are forward-looking statements. By their nature, such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Anglo American, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions regarding Anglo American's present and future business strategies and the environment in which Anglo American will operate in the future. Important factors that could cause Anglo American's actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, among others, levels of actual production during any period, levels of global demand and commodity market prices, mineral resource exploration and development capabilities, recovery rates and other operational capabilities, the availability of mining and processing equipment, the ability to produce and transport products profitably, the impact of foreign currency exchange rates on market prices and operating costs, the availability of sufficient credit, the effects of inflation, political uncertainty and economic conditions in relevant areas of the world, the actions of competitors, activities by governmental authorities such as changes in taxation or safety, health, environmental or other types of regulation in the countries where Anglo American operates, conflicts over land and resource ownership rights and such other risk factors identified in Anglo American's most recent Annual Report. Forward-looking statements should, therefore, be construed in light of such risk factors and undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this announcement. Anglo American expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking (except as required by applicable law, the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers (the 'Takeover Code'), the UK Listing Rules, the Disclosure and Transparency Rules of the Financial Conduct Authority, the Listings Requirements of the securities exchange of the JSE Limited in South Africa, the SWX Swiss Exchange, the Botswana Stock Exchange and the Namibian Stock Exchange and any other applicable regulations) to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statement contained herein to reflect any change in Anglo American's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

 

Nothing in this announcement should be interpreted to mean that future earnings per share of Anglo American will necessarily match or exceed its historical published earnings per share.

 

Certain statistical and other information about Anglo American included in this announcement is sourced from publicly available third party sources. As such, it presents the views of those third parties, though these may not necessarily correspond to the views held by Anglo American.

 

 

Click on, or paste the following link into your web browser, to view the associated PDF document.

 

 http://www.rns-pdf.londonstockexchange.com/rns/9640T_-2015-7-23.pdf

 


This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
 
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