Alexis Minerals Corporation
TSX : AMC
OTCQX : AXSMF

Alexis Minerals Corporation

March 31, 2012 09:24 ET

Alexis Minerals Provides 2012 Operating Cash Cost Guidance and Reports Fourth Quarter Results

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 31, 2012) - ALEXIS MINERALS CORPORATION (TSX:AMC)(OTCQX:ASXMF) ("Alexis" or the "Company") is releasing its fourth quarter and year-end financial and operational results for the period ending December 31, 2011. As well, Alexis hereby updates its 2012 guidance with the addition of operating cash cost figures. All figures are reported in Canadian dollars, unless noted otherwise.

Fourth Quarter Financial Summary:

  • Alexis reported operating revenue of $7.64 million for the quarter ending December 31, 2011 on the sale of 4,639 ounces of gold at an average realized price of $1,696 per ounce (US$ 1,673/oz.).
  • Gold production from Lac Herbin was 3,672 with an average cash cost of $2,060 per ounce (see non-GAAP measures)
  • The Company reported a net loss of $5.07 million or $0.01 per share for the quarter with mine operating expenses of $9.6 million

In the fourth quarter, Alexis mined 31,006 tonnes to produce 3,672 ounces of gold from its Lac Herbin mine - a 64% increase in production from the third quarter. Furthermore, the Company sold 4,639 ounces of gold at an average cost of $1,696 per ounce to report operating revenue of $7.64 million. Cash costs for the period amounted to $2,060 per ounce. Alexis had expected to achieve an operational breakeven point in the fourth quarter but saw cash cost negatively impacted by an inventory adjustment which arose from a lower than expected gold price at the end of the quarter. This inventory adjustment negatively raised the cash costs by approximately $130 per ounce. The company also experienced lower than expected recovery rates at the Aurbel Mill where reported average recoveries were around 81%. This is compared to recovery rates of 88%, which had been the average achieved since the start of operations. If recoveries were in line, cash costs would have been reduced by an additional $160 per ounce.

Commenting on the results of the year end, François Perron, President and CEO stated: "I am confident that our mine operations are on track with the turnaround plan well underway at Lac Herbin. The Aurbel Mill underperformed in this last quarter and we are in the process of implementing corrective measures however 2012 year-to-date recovery rates are now increasing from 81% and moving closer to where we expect them to be. From our quarter and year end results, I am confident in our 2012 guidance numbers with production set at 18,500 to 20,500 ounces gold. I am also pleased to report cash operating cost figures are expected to be between $1,300 and $1,500 an ounce. I continue to be proud of the accomplishments and would like to thank the team for their hard work in Val D'Or. At Snow Lake, we continue to build the team and optimize the mine plan so once the project financing is secured we will be in position to rapidly unlock the potential value of this property for our shareholders."

Operational Guidance

In 2012, Alexis expects to produce 18,500 to 20,500 ounces at a cash cost of $1,300 to $1,500 per ounce from the Lac Herbin mine. The mine has been undergoing an extensive turnaround plan (Press Release June 8th, 2011) and the results of the plan are expected to be seen in the production for this year and are reflected in the guidance figures. The plan focused on intensive underground development, significant near mine exploration and the improvement of the recoveries at the Aurbel Mill. As a result, the mine experienced an increase in the amount of ore mined and milled on target with the expectations set out by the plan.

2011 Year End Highlights

  • Alexis reported revenue of $15.5 million for the year ending December 31, 2011.
  • The Company sold 10,362 ounces of gold at an average realized price of $1,575 per ounce.
  • Cash cost of sales per ounce of gold production from Lac Herbin was $2,185 per ounce (see non-GAAP measures).
  • The Company reported a loss of $13.6 million or $0.03 per share for the year which included mine operating expenses of $22.6 million.

Exploration Outlook

Exploration continues at Snow Lake, Manitoba and the Company is closer than ever to the production decision. Management continues to work intensely on completing the financing deal for the project. As well, recent drill results continue to confirm that there is the potential for mineralization from surface to the 520 foot depth at the east extension of the Main Mine Zone (September 11, 2011) suggesting that there is a major new ore zone on the strike of the existing deposit. As well, further drilling suggests that there are additional extensions to proposed mining areas on the upper mine levels (January 12, 2012) solidifying the Company's Mine plan further.

Complete financial statements and related Management's Discussion and Analysis documents will be available under the Company's profile on www.sedar.com and at the Company's website www.alexisminerals.com.

Non-GAAP Measures

The Company has included certain non-GAAP performance measures, namely, cash costs per gold ounce sold throughout this document. In the gold mining industry, these are common performance measures but do not have any standardized meaning, and are non-GAAP measures. In addition to conventional measures prepared in accordance with GAAP, the Company and certain investors use this information to evaluate the Company's performance and ability to generate cash, profits and meet financial commitments. These non-GAAP measures are intended to provide additional information and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for measures of performance prepared in accordance with GAAP. The following tables provide a reconciliation of cash costs per gold ounce sold for the three months ended September 30, 2011 and 2010.

Cash cost per ounces sold

3 months ending
December 31, 2011
3 months Ending
December 31, 2010
Revenue
From commercial production ounces (CAD 000's) $ 7,089 $ 3,856
Ounces sold 4,639 2,912
Mine operating expenses (CAD 000's) $ 9,600 $ 5,883
Cash cost per ounce sold (CAD) $ 2,069 $ 2,020
(mining operating expenses divided by ounces sold)
December 31, 2011 December 31, 2010
Revenue
From commercial production ounces (CAD 000's) $ 15,554 $ 25,730
Ounces sold 10,362 22.026
Mine operating expenses (CAD 000's) $ 22,638 $ 27,781
Cash cost per ounce sold (CAD) $ 2,185 $ 1,261
(mining operating expenses divided by ounces sold)

Technical programs and information included in this release have been supervised, compiled, reviewed and approved by David Rigg, P.Geo., the Co-Chairman of the Company and a Qualified Person as defined under NI 43-101.

About Alexis

Alexis Minerals Corporation is a Canadian publicly traded mining company concentrating on exploration and mine development. The Company is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange ("TSX") under the symbol "AMC", and trades in the United States on the Over the Counter QX International ("OTCQX") platform under the symbol "AXSMF". The Company's focus is to grow through exploration, development and acquisition of mineral properties and directly and indirectly, through joint ventures. Alexis is now in its second full year as a junior gold-producing company. The Company holds a dominant property position (over 1,104 km2) in three of Canada's richest mining camps: Val-d'Or and Rouyn-Noranda, in the Abitibi District of Québec, Canada, historically the third richest gold producing region in the world; and Snow Lake, Manitoba, Canada. Alexis undertakes exploration across these properties searching for new world class discoveries, while maintaining a focus on growing Alexis to become a mid-tier gold producer. For more information, please visit the company's website at www.alexisminerals.com.

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

Except for statements of historical fact, certain information contained herein constitutes "forward-looking information" under Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking information includes, but is not limited to, statements with respect to the outcome of these financial results on the future of the Company, development potential of the Company's properties; the future price of gold and other minerals; the estimation of mineral reserves and mineral resources; the successful implementation of the development plans at each of the Company's properties; the realization of mineral reserve estimates; the timing and amount of estimated future production; future costs of production; future capital expenditures; success of exploration activities; mining or processing issues; currency exchange rates; government regulation of mining operations; and environmental risks. Generally, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved".
Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made. Estimates regarding the anticipated timing, amount and cost of mining at the Lac Herbin and Snow Lake Projects are based on assumptions underlying mineral reserve and mineral resource estimates, the results of feasibility studies on the properties and the realization of such estimates are set out herein. Capital and operating cost estimates are based on extensive research of the Company, costs incurred at the projects to date, purchase orders placed by the Company to date, recent estimates of construction and mining costs and other factors that are set out herein. Production estimates are based on mine plans and production schedules, which have been developed by the Company's personnel and independent consultants. Forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including but not limited to risks outlined in the annual information form of the Company. Although management of the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking information, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.

Contact Information

  • Alexis Minerals Corporation
    Francois Perron
    President and CEO
    (416) 309-2952

    Alexis Minerals Corporation
    Louis Baribeau
    Public Relations
    (514) 667-2304

    Alexis Minerals Corporation
    Rob Hopkins
    Investor Relations
    (416) 861-5899

    Alexis Minerals Corporation
    Toll free: 877-717-3027
    info@alexisminerals.com
    www.alexisminerals.com