Hindustan Zinc Limited: Results for the Third Quarter Ended December 31, 2015
“Another quarter of strong operating performance” Highlights for the quarter, Hindustan Zinc Net Profit Rs. 1811 Crore. Highest ever integrated saleable silver production at 116 MT; up 67% y-o-y, Integrated saleable zinc production up 8% y-o-y at 206kt, Integrated saleable lead production up 42% y-o-y at 35kt and Mined metal production marginally lower from a year ago at 228kt
“Another quarter of strong operating performance”
Highlights for the quarter Hindustan Zinc Net Profit Rs. 1811 Crore
Hindustan Zinc Limited today announced its results for the third quarter ended December 31, 2015.
Mr. Agnivesh Agarwal, Chairman – “We are happy to report strong refined metal production with silver touching new highs. However, the current low zinc metal prices are contrary to the market fundamentals. We are carrying out a review of our high cost operations to ensure all of our operations are sustainable in the present weak zinc market.”
Operational Performance Mined metal production was 228,082 MT in Q3 as compared with 242,416 MT a year ago. The decrease was largely on account of change in mining mix due to increased contribution from Sindesar Khurd mine and Kayad mine, resulting in lower average grades. For the nine month period, mined metal production increased by 13% to 700,458 MT from corresponding prior period. While Q4 is expected to be weak as per mine plan, full year guidance of marginal growth in mined metal production is maintained; production of refined metals will also be ahead of previous year with silver being significantly higher. Integrated zinc and lead metal production during the quarter increased by 8% y-o-y and 42% y-o-y to 206,322 MT and 35,352 MT respectively on account of enhanced smelter efficiency and conversion of inventories. For the nine month period, integrated zinc and lead metal production increased by 20% and 42% respectively from corresponding prior period. Integrated silver metal production was the highest ever during the quarter, up 67% y-o-y to 116 MT. The increase was driven primarily by enhanced volumes from Sindesar Khurd mine as well as higher smelter efficiency. For the nine month period, integrated silver production increased by 56% to 300 MT from a year ago. The zinc metal cost of production per MT before royalty during the quarter was Rs. 52,383 ($795), which is marginally higher by 4% in rupee terms (lower by 2% in USD terms) from a year ago. The increase is attributed to lower average grades due to change in mining mix, increased & additional regulatory levies and rupee depreciation. This was partly offset by lower coal & commodity prices and higher volumes with better efficiencies. Looking at the current downturn in LME prices, the Company has embarked on a journey of reducing the cost structures to sustain the competiveness of its operations.
Revenues during the quarter were Rs. 3,385 crore, which is 11% lower from a year ago. The impact of higher volumes and rupee depreciation was more than offset by lower LME prices and zinc premium.
EBITDA during the quarter was Rs. 1,469 crore, which is 30% lower from a year ago primarily on account of lower LME prices and impact of newly levied contribution to the District Mineral Foundation of Rs. 84 crore.
Net profit decreased to Rs. 1,811 crore during the quarter as compared to Rs. 2,380 crore a year ago in line with above and due to lower investment income, partly offset by lower tax.
With the on-going multi-year transition to underground mining, mine development is crucial to sustaining future production for the Company. Total mine development during the quarter was accelerated by 55% y-o-y, achieving an all-time record of 15,822 metres. Sindesar Khurd mine ramped up production capacity to a run rate of 3 million MT per annum three months ahead of the schedule indicated earlier, supported by the development of two auxiliary lenses as separate production centres. During the quarter, mill debottlenecking was completed in-line with the mine production, while a new mill project of 1.5 million MT per annum capacity also commenced. The shaft sinking project continues to be ahead of plan.
Rampura Agucha main shaft sinking crossed 860 metres during the quarter of the ultimate depth of 950 metres. Pre-stripping for further deepening of the open pit is progressing satisfactorily, mitigating the risk of delays in decline development and regular stopping from underground mine due to ore body characteristics.
The ramp up of Kayad mine is on track and is expected to achieve 1 million MT per annum production capacity run rate by year end, making it one of the fastest underground mine ramp ups.
Zawar and Rajpura Dariba mine expansion projects are being reviewed in the light of current environment of low commodity prices.
Liquidity and investment
As on December 31, 2015, cash and cash equivalents were Rs. 32,639 crore, out of which Rs. 23,581 crore was invested in mutual funds, Rs. 5,575 crore in bonds and Rs. 3,480 crore in fixed deposits. The Company follows a conservative investment policy and invests in high quality debt instruments.