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Jubilee Platinum focused on building new facilities in 2015

Jubilee Platinum focused on building new facilities in 2015

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Jubilee Platinum (LON:JLP) made continued progress in its journey towards becoming an integrated platinum producer in the second half of 2014.

Although the platinum price remains stubbornly unhelpful, the group remains confident of the long-term prospects for platinum group metals, it revealed in its half-year results.

Revenue in sterling terms rose 22% in the six months to 31 December to £2.8mln from £2.3mln the year before, while in South African rand (ZAR) terms it rose to ZAR 49.4mln from ZAR 36.11mln in the corresponding period of 2013.

Gross profit increased by 34% to £1.3mln from £0.97mln a year earlier, and the loss before tax was cut to £1.02mln from £1.54mln.

Operationally, progress continues to be made at the group's profitable smelting and power operation at Middleburg.

Middleburg's revenue for the six month period increased by 22% to £2.8mln from £2.3mln, and gross profit increased by just over a third to £1.3mln, with a pleasing increase in the gross profit margin to the targeted level (in ZAR terms) of 38%, as optimisation efforts led to a share reduction in electricity used per tonne of metal produced.

Further process optimisation is expected during the first half of this year, specifically targeting the Middelburg operations' variable cost component.

Meanwhile, the company revealed it has entered into discussions with the national power grid of South Africa for both the increase of power sales from the company's power plant as well as extending its current short-term power purchase agreement to a minimum period of three years, with the option to extend this period to five years.

Jubilee expects to conclude its discussions with the grid company in the second quarter of this year.

Looking to the future, Leon Coetzer, Jubilee's chief executive, is enthused about the group's recent acquisitions and agreements.

Jubilee won a contract last year to process material at a tailings dam at ASA Metal’s Dilokong chrome mine, and this year a memorandum of understanding for a deal (three times the size of the ASA one) was signed with the fourth largest ferrochrome producer in the world - Hernic.

"The recently reported acquisitions and agreements are transformational and will make Jubilee a significant player in the platinum arena. It is expected that our new projects will be executed and in commercial production during 2016," Coetzer said.

"The Jubilee mission is strengthened and supported by its ConRoast capability which is a door opener when competing for projects and provides us with multi opportunities for the rapid growth of the Jubilee Mines-to-Metal mission," he added.

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of 2014 stood at £424,000, down from £733,000 at the beginning of the reporting period.

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