Low prices hit profitability of strongly producing Implats

Implats CEO Nico Muller.

Implats CEO Nico Muller.

29th February 2024

By: Martin Creamer

Creamer Media Editor


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JOHANNESBURG ( – The significant decline in platinum group metal (PGM) prices during 2023 has resulted in notably lower group profitability, despite disciplined cost control across several operations, PGMs mining and marketing company Implats reported on Thursday.  

The group generated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) of R8.4-billion, headline earnings of R3.3-billion or 365c a share, and recorded a free cash outflow of R4.8-billion, after funding capital expenditure of R6.8-billion.

With the acquisition of Royal Bafokeng Platinum concluded, Implats closed the period with net cash of R5.2-billion. No interim dividend was declared.

Implats CEO Nico Muller noted in a release to Mining Weekly that despite several challenges during the period under review, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed Implats delivered a strong operational performance.

“This production performance is testament to prior investment in enhanced operational flexibility, and the resilience and disciplined execution demonstrated by our people.

“The 11 Shaft tragedy at Impala Rustenburg was a devastating and significant event for our group and we continue to progress investigations into the accident while providing ongoing support to our many colleagues who have been impacted as a result,” Muller added.

Notable gains in production and sales volumes and commendable cost control across several Implats operations were offset by the material decline in the PGMs prices over the course of 2023, resulting in a step-change in interim reported profitability at the group.

While fundamental demand for primary products remains robust, the persistence of lower PGM prices requires a robust strategic response to ensure the long-term group sustainability.

PGM pricing has been negatively impacted by a confluence of factors that look set to persist in the medium term.

Implats expects 2024 to be a difficult year characterised by anaemic precious metal consumer and investor sentiment as economic and geopolitical uncertainty linger.

While the group has benefitted from some retracement in input pricing escalation, inflationary pressures on operating and capital costs have persisted.

As a result, Implats has interrogated its planned capital profile and several projects  are now earmarked for deferral.

Impala Canada was repositioned the operation during the period and  the strategic options available to protect value at Impala Bafokeng are being studied.

While many group operations remain sustainable and profitable at current depressed prices, several further actions may be necessary to ensure business sustainability in the medium term, the company stated in a media release.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter




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