TSX- and NYSE-listed Platinum Group Metals is focusing its 2015 efforts on underground development and mine construction at Project 1 and to achieve first production in calendar Q4 2015.
Reporting its financial results for the three months ended November 30, 2014, Platinum Group Metals revealed that approximately US$343 million of development and construction investment has been completed at Project 1 within a total peak-funding estimate of US$502 million.
Focusing on skills and management for growth
Platinum Group Metals achieved solid performance in 2014, with a good safety record, as Project 1 reached 70% completion. After a planned two year ramp up period, steady state production is scheduled at 275 000 ounces platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold. The company’s current cash position is projected to be sufficient to complete the mine build to initial production.
Furthermore, Platinum Group’s management team, who will take Project 1 and the company into production in 2015, has recently been expanded with qualified and experienced professionals being added in all key operational areas. Key operational leadership roles have been filled in recent months, including mine general manager, production manager, equipment specialist, engineering specialist, safety and environment manager and a training superintendent.
Q1 financial results reveals $5.6 million loss
Platinum Group Metals’ cash position has increased from $65 million to approximately $167 million, with the increase being due to the net proceeds of the company’s offering of common shares that closed on December 31, 2014.
Nevertheless, during the three months ended November 30, 2014, the company incurred a net loss of $5.6 million. General and administrative expenses during the quarter were $1.8 million and gains on foreign exchange were $0.95 million, while amounts receivable at November 30, 2014 totalled $8.0 million and accounts payable and accrued liabilities amounted to $26.9 million.
During the quarter ended November 30, 2014, total expenditures by the company for development, construction, equipment and other costs for Project 1 were approximately $45.5 million. Expenditures by the company during the quarter for exploration on the Waterberg projects were approximately $3.7 million, with a further $1.6 million funded by joint venture partner, the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC).
Platinum Group Metals’ expanded outlook for 2015
Besides the successful start-up of production at Project 1, Platinum Group Metals also plans to advance both the Waterberg JV Project and the Waterberg Extension Project through project and infrastructure engineering as well as modest confirmation drilling and exploration activities.
During 2015 Platinum Group Metals has indicated that it will be speaking with its partners and other third parties interested to become involved at Waterberg, specifically working with with Macquarie Bank in South Africa to identify financing alternatives for our Black-Economic Empowerment partners so that they may become fully funded at both Project 1 and at Waterberg.
“The company will consider transactions with the potential to provide funding for additional work. The goal will be to keep the Waterberg projects advancing and on track to the completion of the planned pre-feasibility study and beyond while maintaining our interest in the Waterberg JV and maintaining an effective majority interest in the Waterberg Extension,” the company said in a statement.
“We believe that the market for platinum and palladium will be in deficit for 2015 and this along with a lower South African Rand will provide a positive environment to commence production.”