Caledonia Mining Corporation Plc COM SHS NPV (DI) (LON:CMCL) today announced that, in line with its dividend policy, the Board of Directors has declared a dividend of one and three eighths United States cents (US$0.01375) on each of the Company’s common shares.
The relevant dates relating to the increased dividend are as follows:
· Ex-dividend date for shares held on the Canadian register: 11 January 2017
· Ex-dividend date for shares held through depositary interests in Crest in the UK: 12 January 2017
· Record date: 13 January 2017
· Dividend cheque mailing date: 27 January 2017
Shareholders and depositary interest holders who are registered in Canada and the UK respectively will be paid in Canadian Dollars and Sterling, respectively. The Canadian Dollar and Sterling dividend payments will be calculated using the relevant Bank of Canada exchange rates at noon on the record date.
Caledonia Mining Corporation Plc Chief Executive Officer, Steve Curtis, said, “2016 has been a significant year for Caledonia with the investment in production capacity below 750m at the Blanket Mine beginning to bear fruit.
The continued payment of dividends to our shareholders is a key component of our strategy as we invest in future production growth and we are particularly proud of being able to continue to pay a healthy dividend whilst we invest in expanding production. I am confident that as gold production continues to increase at the Blanket Mine as a result of our investment plan, the cost per ounce of gold produced will continue to fall.
We look forward to an equally significant 2017 as we target 60,000 ounces of production from the Blanket mine as we continue our progress towards the annual production of 80,000 ounces by 2021.
Caledonia remains committed to distributing cash to shareholders whilst simultaneously retaining a robust balance sheet to enable us to take advantage of further investment opportunities.”
Caledonia’s Dividend Policy
Caledonia’s strategy to maximise shareholder value includes a quarterly dividend policy. In 2014, the Company paid an annual aggregate dividend of six Canadian cents (CAN$0.060) per common share. The first quarterly dividend was paid on 31 January 2014 and subsequent quarterly dividends were paid thereafter.
On 16 December 2015 Caledonia announced that henceforth it will report its financial results in United States Dollars, commencing with the results for the quarter and 12 months to 31 December 2015. The dividend paid at the end of January 2016 was therefore denominated in United States Dollars at 1.125 United States cents per share.
In July 2016 Caledonia announced a 22 per cent increase in the quarterly dividend to 1.375 United States cents. The increase reflects the Company’s confidence that its earnings and cash generation will increase as production at the Blanket Mine increases due to the continued implementation of the Investment Plan.
It is expected that the increased dividend of 5.5 United States cents per annum, paid in equal quarterly instalments, will be maintained. Caledonia will continue to maintain its strong financial position so that it can implement its stated growth strategy without the need to raise third party finance.
Effect of the re-domicile from Canada to Jersey, Channel Islands
Following the re-domicile of the company from Canada to Jersey with effect from 19 March 2016, the dividend is no longer subject to Canadian withholding tax and it is no longer eligible for the purposes of the Income Tax Act (Canada).
About Caledonia Mining
Following the implementation of indigenisation in Zimbabwe, Caledonia’s primary asset is a 49% interest in an operating gold mine in Zimbabwe (“Blanket”). Caledonia’s shares are listed in Canada on the Toronto Stock Exchange as “CAL”, on London’s AIM as “CMCL” and are also traded on the American OTCQX as “CALVF”.
At 30 September 2016, Caledonia had net cash of US$12.4 m. Blanket plans to increase production from 42,800 ounces in 2015 to approximately 80,000 ounces in 2021; Blanket’s target production for 2017 is approximately 60,000 ounces. Caledonia expects to publish its results for the quarter and year to 31 December 2016 on 21 March 2017.