Saracen Mineral Holdings Ltd. posted record production of 96,324 ounces of gold for the first quarter of its fiscal 2020 with all-in sustaining costs of A$964 per ounce.
Output was ahead of the company's fiscal 2020 production guidance of 350,000 to 370,000 ounces and below its all-in sustaining cost, or AISC, guidance of A$1,025/oz to A$1,075/oz, it said Oct. 22. Shares were up 4.75% by ASX trading close following the announcement.
In the first quarter of Saracen's fiscal 2019, it produced 88,940 ounces at AISC of A$993/oz.
Saracen's Thunderbox project in Western Australia contributed 45,735 ounces in the period under review, and the mine's AISC fell to a record low of A$682/oz as the C Zone open pit delivered higher grades and lower strip-ratio ore, as planned.
Gold sales were 97,307 ounces at an average price of A$1,916/oz, generating revenue of A$186.4 million.
The company said its unaudited net profit after tax totaled between A$42 million and A$45 million. It outlined plans to start paying dividends from fiscal 2020, targeting a payout of 20% to 40% of its net profit after tax, as long as it maintains at least A$150 million in cash.
Saracen spent A$16.3 million on exploration during the quarter, with A$50 million earmarked for exploration in the full year.
Cash and equivalents as of Sept. 30 totaled A$196.1 million, compared to A$154.5 million at the end of June.
The company recently entered into a binding agreement to acquire Talisman Mining Ltd. subsidiary Talisman Nickel Pty. Ltd., owner of the Sinclair nickel project in Western Australia.