--adds broker comments, share price --
Wolf Minerals (LON:WLFE) has taken operational control of its new tungsten and tin mine at Hemerdon, near Plymouth, after the completion of commissioning.
A first consignment of tungsten and tin concentrate has also been shipped producing first revenues and operating cash flow from the new operation.
The mine is now going through its ramp-up phase towards full production.
Work currently is on a trial seven day per week basis, which, if successful and may become permanent and enable additional volumes of tungsten and tin concentrates to be produced with no further capital expenditure.
Russell Clark, Wolf’s managing director, said: “The conclusion of commissioning activities represents another major milestone in the development of the Project, and I congratulate the Wolf team, GR Engineering Services and their sub-contractors, who have worked together to safely achieve this landmark.
“With the inaugural shipment, Wolf has now realised its ambition of becoming a tungsten producer and we expect to supply high quality concentrate to our customers for many years into the future."
Broker SP Angel noted that tungsten prices at US$185/mtu for intermediate product have almost halved in the 18 months it has taken to build the mine, but having the flexibility of seven day working offers an opportunity to bring production costs down and weather the current commodity price weakness, added the broker.
Finncap trimmed its price target to 18p from 23p “to reflect the current market reality” of lower tungsten prices but kept its ‘buy’ stance.
Shares were trading at 16p today.