Aim-listed Sylvania Platinum achieved a record platinum group metals (PGMs) production performance at its Tweefontein project, which contributed 2 209 oz towards the Sylvania Dump Operations (SDO) achieving 15 771 oz of platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold (4E) output in the first quarter of the 2022 financial year, despite the temporary production suspension at Lesedi.
The temporary suspension of operations at Lesedi extended throughout the first quarter and it will be ramped up to normal capacity towards the end of the second quarter, as hydro-mining of the affected tailings dam facility started at the end of September.
During the quarter ended September 30, SDO recorded $29.8-million in net revenue for the three-month period, which was then impacted by a 29% decrease in the gross PGMs basket price.
Group earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) for the period were $13.6-million, while the miner recorded a net profit of $8.6-million.
Sylvania’s achievements during the quarter were also impacted by lower-than-planned run-of-mine and current arising PGM feed grades and associated recovery efficiency at Mooinooi, which impacted on ounce production during the quarter.
Sylvania on October 26 said it was working with host mines to optimise grades at source.
Further, higher throughput rate and recovery efficiencies achieved by Tweefontein, which set a new monthly SDO record of 2 209 oz during the past quarter, are expected to continue during the financial year and will assist to mitigate the impact of Lesedi's lower production.
Construction on the new tailings dam facility at Lesedi is under way with completion scheduled for the third quarter; while the secondary milling and flotation (MF2) projects at Lesedi and Tweefontein are on track to start contributing towards production as planned during the 2023 calendar year.
Additionally, the group maintains strong cash reserves to finance capital expansion and process optimisation projects; the safeguarding of employees during these times of uncertainty; upgrading the group's exploration and evaluation assets and returning value to all stakeholders.
Commenting on the quarter’s results, Sylvania CEO Jaco Prinsloo said the miner’s capital projects, which are fully funded from current cash reserves, are progressing well.
Prinsloo remains optimistic that the results of these efforts will steadily show themselves as the miner navigates its way through 2022.
He is confident that Sylvania will attain its production target of 70 000 oz for the full 2022 financial year.