“We are proud to have met all of our guidance for the year, achieving record production of 584 000 oz with a significant increase in Q4 compared to Q3, particularly at Agbaou and Tabakoto,” Endeavour Mining president & CEO Sébastien de Montessus stated.
Full year 2016 production represented a 13% increase over 2015, with Agbaou setting another record year and strong contributions from Tabakoto, Ity and Karma, which either met or exceeded their respective guidance while Nzema was impacted by lower than expected purchased ore.
We are pleased with the continued ramp up at Karma, which has increased production by 43% over the previous quarter to 29 000 oz, while the reserve conversion at the North Kao deposit has extended its mine life beyond 10 years, added the CEO.
This strong group performance has allowed Endeavour Mining to lower its all-in sustaining costs (AISC) below $900/oz for the first time, recording its lowest ever AISC of $884/0z and it is on track to continue that momentum in 2017. The decrease in AISC was due to a strong performance at Agbaou and an improved asset portfolio, including a full year’s contribution from Ity, the purchase and ramp-up of Karma and the divestment of the higher-cost Youga mine.
Endeavour Mining has also significantly deleveraged its balance sheet this year, providing strong liquidity and financing sources to fund its organic growth.
Other financial performance highlights include a 55% increase in free cash flow to $142 million before growth projects and a decrease in net debt from $144 million to $26 million.
Further, Endeavour Mining is well-positioned to finance growth projects with $334 million of available financing and liquidity. Endeavour Mining also noted the significant increase in earnings from its operations, which increased by 70% to $168 million.
“Last year’s strong performance, which continued in the first quarter, leaves us in a solid position to continue to increase production to 600 000 – 640 000 oz and further lower the group’s AISC to $860-905/oz in 2017, without the contribution of Houndé for which the construction is progressing on-budget and on-schedule for a first gold pour for Q4,” the company reported.
“Looking ahead, we remain focused on unlocking further organic growth potential, with an upcoming investment decision at our Ity carbon-in-leach development project and through our reinvigorated exploration programme.”
As expected, Q4 was Endeavour Mining’s strongest quarter with production up 20% over the previous quarter to a record 175 000 oz, and AISC down 5% to record low of $855/oz, as a result of strong increases at Agbaou, Ity and Tabakoto which benefited from the end of the rainy season, and the continued ramp-up at Karma.