Goldplat a transitional year and turnaround performance

Goldplat

Goldplat plc (LON:GDP), the AIM quoted gold producer, with international gold recovery operations located in South Africa and Ghana and a held for sale mining operation in Kenya, has announced its preliminary unaudited results for the year ended 30 June 2020.

Operational Highlights

The preliminary unaudited results for the year ended 30 June 2020 reflect the impact of our strategy to focus on the recovery operations and to divest from our exploration and mining portfolio to maximize shareholder value and ensure strong returns to shareholders in future. The Group produced a strong and much improved operational result for the year ended 30 June 2020 from continuing operations with:

·      Profit before tax for the year from continuing operations increased to £5,666,000 (including a non-cashflow impairment loss of £295,000), versus a restated profit of £1,017,000 during the prior period;

·      As a result, the profit after tax from continuing operations increased, by a factor of 10 to £3,305,000(Restated 2019: £305,000);

·      The group net current assets at 30 June 2020 strengthened during the period to £5,216,000 from a restated balance of £3,577,000, with the cash position increasing to £3,141,000 (2019: £2,367,000);

·      The conditional agreement we announced on 31 July 2020 for the sale of Kilimapesa (“KPG”), once completed, provides Goldplat an equity interest in the prospective acquirer without being required to provide further finance or management time;

·      Due to the strategic decision to discontinue exploration and mining activities and divest from KPG, KPG and the equity investment in Anumso have been classified as discontinued operations. As a result, a loss from discontinued operations for the period of £5,270,000 (2019: £2,778,000) has been recognized, which includes the non-cashflow impairment of goodwill relating to KPG of £967,000, the non-cashflow impairment loss of £2,218,000 of KPG assets noted above and the non-cashflow impairment of the equity investment into Anumso of £660,000.

·      The results for the prior year have been adjusted to:

o  Recognized the foreign currency translation reserve loss of £381,000 at 30 June 2019, attributable to the non-controlling interest in South Africa. The foreign currency reserve loss was previously included in the exchange reserve and not allocated to non-controlling interest.

o  Recognize the decommissioning asset with net book value at 30 June 2019 of £438,000 in respect of the environmental rehabilitation obligation. The future cost of decommissioning was previously included in the statement of profit or loss.

o  Recognize the loss of control in Anumso during the prior year. In the previous period Anumso was consolidated, but the re-assessment of the circumstances indicated a change to the elements of control, finding the basis of consolidation not appropriate. The prior year have been adjusted to include Anumso as an equity investment.

·      None of the prior year adjustments had a cashflow impact and more detail on these have been provided in note 8 of the preliminary results attached.

Goldplat Recovery (Pty) Ltd (‘GPL’) – South Africa

·      GPL had an exceptional year, supported by the increase in the gold price and a reduction in operating costs, and increased its operational profits by 102% to £5,624,000 (Restated 2019: £2,790,000). Revenues decreasing by 8%, to £15,900,000 (Restated 2019: £17,342,000), which is attributable to a month’s loss of production as a result of Covid-19 pandemic;

·      Sourcing risk has been managed during the period by adding an additional 3 clients and strengthening our good relationships with major producers;

·      Significant strides have been made during the period, through research and development, in finding the optimal solution for reprocessing of the two million tons Tailing Storage Facility (“TSF”);

·      With GPL’s TSF reaching full capacity, £210,000 was invested to improve its stability. Further capital cost of circa £200,000, will allow us to extend the use of the facility until June 2021. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic the process to approve the application for an adjoining TSF has been delayed and approval is expected to be received towards end of March 2021.  

Gold Recovery Ghana Limited (‘GRG’) – Ghana

·      GRG returned to profitability, posting an operating profit before finance cost of £724,000 (2019: loss of £536,000).

·      The sourcing efforts in West Africa and further afield returned value during the period through two new contracts, one recurring and the other one-off. The increase in feed material resulted in revenues increasing from £4,427,000 during the previous financial period to £8,909,000.

·      GRG has established stronger relationships with West African and South American clients during the period, improving our future outlook of supply. 

Werner Klingenberg, CEO of Goldplat plc commented: “The current financial period for Goldplat has not just been a year of turnaround performance in its continuing operations, but also a transitional period, with renewed focus on key initiatives in its recovery operations, whilst moving away from mining. The strong performance in the recovery operations reinforced our decision to divest from our exploration and mining portfolio. The discontinuing of our exploration and mining segment gave us the opportunity to impair Group assets to provide a clear view of the financial position of our continuing operations. The increase in supply of material during the period and the strengthening of our customer base, supported by the higher gold prices, has provided us with a good platform to drive our strategic initiatives during the next period and to return value to shareholders again.” 

Chairman’s Statement

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I am pleased to introduce strong and much improved Group operational results for the year ended 30 June 2020 and to advise shareholders of significant progress in the Group’s development towards sustainable profitability from our two precious metal recovery facilities in South Africa and Ghana.

Profit for the year from continuing operations was £5,666,000 before taxation (Restated 2019: £1,017,000) and

£3,305,000 after taxation (Restated 2019: £305,000) and net current assets at 30 June 2020 stood at £5,216,000 (Restated 2019: £3,577,000) including cash of £3,141,000 (2019: £2,367,000).

Whilst the gold price has clearly been a strong contributor to these results, that is far from being the whole story behind this year’s operational success. The efforts that Goldplat’s highly skilled team has been putting in to improving operational efficiency, developing new processes, widening the types of material we can profitably accommodate and developing our customer base are all contributing to these results, and should stand us in good stead irrespective of the gold price.

This year’s results reflect the accounting adjustments arising from discontinued operations, being principally the Kilimapesa gold mine in Kenya. The conditional agreement we announced on 31 July 2020 for the sale of Kilimapesa, once completed, provides for Goldplat to have an equity interest in the prospective acquirer without being required to provide further finance or management time. Goldplat’s management can then fully concentrate on the precious metal recovery businesses which have always been the source of the Group’s profitability and positive cash flows.

We also still have work to do to ensure that the strong operational results convert into sustainable returns to shareholders. Aside from the one-off accounting loss arising from discontinued operations, the Group’s results continue to be affected by a high effective tax rate (this year 42% of profit from continuing operating activities (2019: 72%) and the effects of foreign exchange rates fluctuating across the four currencies in which we operate and sterling in which we present our results. We are looking at ways of simplifying the group structure to help address these issues so that we may realise our ambition of distributing cash surplus to the Group’s operational requirements and growth plans to shareholders.

On 14 May 2020, I was pleased to announce the appointment of Gerard Kisbey-Green as a non-executive director, following dialogue with a substantial shareholder of the Company. Gerard had previously served as an Executive Director from 2014 until his resignation in 2019. He has extensive experience of the Group and its stakeholders and has much to contribute to the Group’s development. Notwithstanding the travel restrictions and dislocation which the current pandemic has brought on, I believe that your Board of Directors has continued to function effectively over the period, meeting with the usual regularity (using teleconferencing where necessary) and receiving reports on all the Group’s multi-national operations in the normal manner.

The pandemic also brought on new challenges to operating our facilities in South Africa and Ghana in a safe way for all our employees and local communities.  The relevant regulatory authorities have been helpful and active in assisting businesses such as ours to meet these challenges, for which we are most appreciative.  Operations in South Africa halted for approximately a month, in the circumstances not a long period, and I am pleased to report that both operations returned to near full production and near full employment within a matter of weeks. In addition to addressing the challenges of the pandemic, our performance in respect of our on-going health, safety and environmental obligations has continued to be strong.

My profound thanks to all Goldplat’s employees in South Africa, Ghana, South America and Kenya for the ways in which they have risen to the current challenges, as well as to my fellow board members and Goldplat’s advisors for their contributions. We look forward with optimism.

Matthew Seymour Robinson

Chairman

30 November 2020

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