MOSCOW – Russia's largest gold producer, Polyus, on Monday reported a 20% jump in fourth-quarter adjusted net profit to $291-million compared with last year, lifted by increased production and rising sales of the metal.
Adjusted net profit for the full year rose to $1.33-billion, Polyus said, up from $1.02-billion in 2017.
Shares in Polyus were down 0.7% at 08:28 GMT.
The company also said adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) in the fourth quarter stood at $484-million, up 4% on the year.
Revenue in the fourth quarter was at $774-million, up 4.2% on the year. The company's sales in 2018 were up 8% compared with the previous year at 2.33-million ounces of gold.
The company said it planned to invest around $725-million in 2019, an increase on its earlier forecast of $650-million, reflecting delays to the construction of some projects at its Natalka gold deposit in Russia's far east.
Polyus chief executive Pavel Grachev told Reuters in an interview in December that the company aimed to see a full ramp-up of production at its new Natalka gold deposit in December or in early 2019.
Capital expenditure in 2018 was at $736-million, the company said on Monday, down from $804-million in 2017.
"Polyus demonstrated solid free cash flow generation during the year despite a capex intensive period," Grachev said in a statement.
"Polyus expects to deliver approximately 2.8-million ounces of gold in 2019, which is in line with our initial guidance. The Natalka operations ... and a number of ongoing throughput capacity expansion projects across our assets will underpin further production growth," he said.
Polyus said its board of directors intended to recommend a second half 2018 dividend of $296-million, or $2.2 a share.