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Hochschild Mining swings to loss and lowers production targets

6th Sep 2023 14:37

(Alliance News) - Hochschild Mining PLC on Wednesday said it has lowered its production guidance for the current year following a decline in the first half, with revenue and earnings both decreasing.

The London-based silver and gold miner has operations in North and South America, including as well in southern Argentina and in Brazil. It swung to a pretax loss, after exceptional items, of USD61.1 million in the first half of 2023, compared with a USD5.4 million profit in 2022.

Hochschild's attributable production decreased 13% to 136,878 gold equivalent ounces from 157,380, or to 11.4 million silver equivalent ounces from 13.1 million the year before.

According to the miner, delays in securing a modified environmental impact assessment for the Inmaculada mine, its flagship project in southern Peru, affected its operational and exploration strategy.

Following approval on August 1, however, Hochschild said it "is now in an excellent position," to unlock the mine's "impressive geological potential".

Revenue decreased 9.7% to USD314.0 million from USD347.8 million. Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell 24% to USD99.5 million from USD130.5 million.

At June 30, meanwhile, Hochschild had cash and equivalents of USD93.6 million, down from USD143.8 million at December 31. Net debt increased to USD227.1 million from USD175.1 million over the same period.

Hochschild revised its production guidance for the whole of 2023, primarily to reflect the impact of the delays at Inmaculada. It is now targeting 289,000 to 303,000 gold equivalent ounces, down from 301,000 to 314,000 last year, or 24.0 to 25.0 million silver equivalent ounces from 25.0 to 26.0 million.

"I would like to express my gratitude to all stakeholders for their ongoing support in what has been a prolonged period of uncertainty for the company," said Chief Executive Officer Eduardo Landin. "We are, however, entering a new phase with renewed impetus, and we are looking forward to a busy second half of construction and we work to deliver on our commitments to all stakeholders."

Hochschild shares were down 0.5% at 84.90 pence in London on Wednesday afternoon.

By Emma Curzon, Alliance News reporter

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