Buoyed by the high rand PGM basket price, Impala Platinum Holdings Limited (Implats) has posted a 328% increase in headline earnings and declared a record interim dividend of R10 per share on a strong production, safety and sales performance.
Production volumes further benefitted from increased processing availability and the inclusion of contributions from Impala Canada.
Implats CEO, Nico Muller, says: “Implats delivered stellar results for its half year ended 31 December 2020 despite the challenges presented by navigating COVID-19. An improved fatal free safety performance underpinned operational momentum. Production volumes further benefitted from increased processing availability and the inclusion of contributions from Impala Canada. This allowed the group to deliver higher sales volumes into robust rand PGM pricing and achieve record financial results.
“Record free cash flow has allowed further proactive management of the group balance sheet, with a series of debt repayments and targeted transactions to strengthen financial flexibility and secure sustainable shareholder returns.
“The factors driving current and future PGM demand and the characteristics of the economic impact of the pandemic continue to support our view that, ultimately, the impact of COVID-19 will be cyclical rather than structural in nature. A strong rebound in both demand and supply is expected in PGM markets in 2021. While the expected short-term deficits in palladium and rhodium have been moderated by the anticipated release of in-process concentrate inventory accumulated in 2020, they remain meaningful and lend support to elevated pricing.
“Implats has successfully navigated the impact of COVID-19 during the period and is well positioned to deliver as planned into robust rand PGM pricing. The focus is on maintaining operational momentum, leveraging the windfall on pricing to reward investors and secure future growth and sustainability for the business.”