Lucara Diamond
Lucara Diamond Corp has announced revenues of US$295.5 million or $824/ct and EBITDA of $185.4 million for the full 2016 financial year.

This is compared to $223.8 million and $593/ct in 2015.

The company said earnings per share for the year was $0.19 compared to earnings per share of $0.21 in 2015 and full year dividends paid was C$0.51 per share or C$194.7 million.

Lucara Diamond Corp reiterated that it was increasing its regular annual dividend to C$0.10 per share expected to be paid in four equal payments on a quarterly basis in 2017.

Other financial highlights for the year included full year costs standing at $26.5/t of ore processed and a year end cash position of $53.3 million.

As far as operations are concerned, new mine contractor Moolman Mining Botswana, started mobilisation in February. Since December, the company has processed ore from stockpile, resulting in lower than forecast ore and waste mined for the year. However, ore processed for the year was higher than the forecast at 2.6 million tonnes with diamond recoveries totaling 353 974 ct.

What is more, Lucara Diamond Corp’s Mega Diamond Recovery and sub middles XRT projects are advancing and expected to be completed on time and budget in 2017.

Lucara Diamond Corp added that its exploration programme was well advanced at BK02 and AK11 with results to be released during 2017. Drilling will start at AK13 and AK14 during 2017, while the drilling programme to test the Karowe AK06 kimberlite at depths below 400 m was completed in February 2017.

Lucara Diamond Corp further invested in Tsodilo Resources for $2.5 million in a private placement financing. Tsodilo Resources has title to the Botswana BK16 project covering an area of 1.02 square km and is located 28 km northeast from Karowe mine.

William Lamb, President and CEO commented: “The company achieved record sales in 2016. We demonstrated our commitment to deliver consistent and sustainable value to our shareholders as well as the strength of our cash flow generation by paying a special dividend during the year, while continuing to advance growth opportunities in Botswana.

“We remain focused on operating performance at the Karowe mine and we are well positioned to continue to drive operating efficiencies and safe productivity in partnership with our new mining contractor.

“Our capital projects for enhanced diamond recovery are on target to be completed in 2017, ensuring maximum diamond recoveries from the high value south lobe. We also remain excited with our work on resource expansion at the Karowe mine through our deep drilling program and our advanced exploration program in Botswana.”