JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The smart technology and efficiency enhancing programmes of diversified mining company Anglo American have netted the company $4.7-billion so far.
FutureSmart Mining (TM) programmes deliver additional value from equipment and processes and P101 uplifts the performance of existing operating assets, the products of which have been tailored to foster a cleaner, greener and more sustainable world.
The producer of copper, platinum group metals, iron-ore and diamonds generated an underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) of $10-billion, a 9% increase, and $2.3-billion of attributable free cash flow.
“If you look at our doubling of productivity, 30% of that improvement is just through the portfolio changes we made, which is the focus on getting the better assets to do better,” Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani said in response to Mining Weekly.
“But on average, every asset that we have in the portfolio today is doing 30% better than it was five years ago.
“So, the portfolio change added 30%, and the assets we kept also improved 30% and the technical change that we also introduced added another 30%.
“That’s how you break it down for 100% improvement. P101 is all about that 30% improvement in the operating assets and that is connected to the operating model,” he said.
Anglo American CFO Stephen Pearce said that over the last two years, the company had generated cost and volume benefit of about $500-million from the programmes.
“Our assets are running at a much higher rate. We had a few external headwinds with some water challenges at Los Broncos in South America and load-shedding in South Africa.
“That $500-million is net of those headwinds. The challenge we’ve got is to make sure that the underlying improvement in every piece of equipment drops to the bottom line and that all parts of our value chain are operating at those same rates,” said Pearce.
That $500-million goes with the $4.2-billion delivered up to that time.
“So, our full run rate is about $4.7-billion, which means we’ve literally doubled Ebitda over the years from a standing start. And don’t forget our prices are 5% lower today and so effectively we’ve doubled our Ebitda through the internal restructuring and efficiency improvements we’ve delivered,” Cutifani stated.
“We do see a continuing upside and we’re focusing on how we continue to maintain the momentum that we’ve created. We’re not yet the best of the best. We’ve improved our competitive positions significantly but there’s a lot more we can do.
“The technical changes we’ve introduced have certainly had a big impact and our marketing is something that doesn’t get a lot of airplay but has been significant,” Cutifani said.
In terms of FutureSmart Mining, the company had been in strategic conversation on this for more than six years.
“FutureSmart Mining is about changing the way that mining is carried out so that we can ultimately get to carbon neutrality,” he added.