SOURCE: Gran Colombia Gold Corp.

Gran Colombia Gold Corp.

May 12, 2016 18:09 ET

Gran Colombia Gold Announces First Quarter 2016 Results; Steady Improvement in EBITDA, Costs and Production

TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - May 12, 2016) -  Gran Colombia Gold Corp. (TSX: GCM) (OTC PINK: TPRFF) announced today the release of its unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements and accompanying management's discussion and analysis (MD&A) for the three months ended March 31, 2016. All financial figures contained herein are expressed in U.S. dollars unless otherwise noted.

First Quarter 2016 Highlights

  • On January 20, 2016 (the "Exchange Date"), Gran Colombia completed the comprehensive restructuring of its Senior Secured Gold-Linked Notes due October 2017 (the "Gold Notes") and Senior Unsecured Silver-Linked Notes due August 2018 (the "Silver Notes), bringing it out of default and improving its liquidity as it continues with its mine plan implementation at the Segovia Operations.
  • Gran Colombia reported further improvement in its quarterly adjusted EBITDA which amounted to $11.6 million in the first quarter of 2016 compared with $7.1 million in the first quarter last year. Increased production together with the significant reduction in total cash costs and G&A expenses were the primary drivers. See the Company's MD&A for the computation and components of this non-IFRS measure.
  • Gran Colombia maintained its cash position at $3.0 million at the end of the first quarter of 2016. Adjusted EBITDA generated in the first quarter of 2016 was deployed to fund interest payments on the Company's senior debt, costs associated with completion of the comprehensive restructuring, capital expenditures and payment plans with local creditors as part of the Company's initiative to reduce its working capital deficit this year.
  • Gran Colombia met its expectation for the first quarter of 2016 as gold production totalled 31,489 ounces, up 5% from the fourth quarter of 2015 and up 31% from the first quarter a year ago. With a further 12,053 ounces produced in April, the Company remains on track with its production guidance for 2016 of a total of 120,000 to 138,000 ounces of gold for the year.
  • Revenue of $34.5 million in the first quarter of 2016, up 12% over the first quarter last year, primarily reflects the increased gold production this year that contributed to a 17% increase in gold ounces sold, offset partially by the impact of lower gold prices in 2016 that decreased the Gran Colombia's realized gold prices by 4% to an average of $1,144 per ounce for the first quarter of 2016.
  • Devaluation of the Colombian peso, the increased gold production reducing fixed costs on a per ounce basis, and cost savings all combined to reduce total cash costs by 17% from a year ago to $685 per ounce in the first quarter of 2016 and bringing all-in sustaining costs ("AISC") down by 16% to $790 per ounce for the first quarter this year. See the Company's MD&A for the computation of these non-IFRS measures.
  • Gran Colombia reported net income attributable to shareholders of $10.8 million for the first quarter of 2016, or $0.15 per share, compared with a net loss attributable to shareholders of $3.3 million, or $0.14 per share, in the first quarter of 2015. The current quarter's net income attributable to shareholders includes $14.5 million, or $0.20 per share, of after-tax mark-to-market ("MTM") gains on the Gold and Silver Notes up to the Exchange Date.
  • After adjustments for the after-tax MTM gains and certain other items as set out in a reconciliation in the Company's MD&A, Gran Colombia reported adjusted net income attributable to shareholders of $0.3 million, or $0.00 per share, in the first quarter of 2016 compared with an adjusted net loss of $1.8 million, or $0.08 per share, in the first quarter last year. The improvement in the current quarter's adjusted EBITDA, partially offset by costs associated with completion of the debt restructuring, was largely responsible for the year-over-year improvement in adjusted net income attributable to shareholders.

Lombardo Paredes Arenas, Chief Executive Officer of Gran Colombia, commenting on the Company's results for the first quarter of 2016, said, "We are making steady progress in the execution of our business plan. The improvement in our adjusted EBITDA, made possible through reductions in our costs and production growth, is enabling us to use our operating cash flow in the short-term to improve our balance sheet by reducing our working capital deficit and, ultimately, is essential for building the cash required to repay our senior debt."

Financial and Operating Summary

A summary of the financial and operating results for the first quarters of 2016 and 2015 follows:

  First Quarter  
  2016   2015  
             
Operating data:            
  Gold produced (ounces)   31,489     23,973  
  Gold sold (ounces)   29,686     25,332  
  Average realized gold price ($/oz sold) $ 1,144   $ 1,193  
  Total cash costs ($/oz sold) (1)   685     824  
  All-in sustaining costs ($/oz sold) (1)   790     938  
             
Financial data ($000's, except per share amounts):            
  Revenue $ 34,470   $ 30,658  
  Adjusted EBITDA (1)   11,586     7,143  
  Net income (loss) attributable to shareholders   10,826     (3,315 )
  Basic and diluted income (loss) per share   0.15     (0.14 )
  Adjusted net income (loss) attributable to shareholders (1)   251     (1,816 )
  Basic and diluted adjusted income (loss) per share (1)   0.00     (0.08 )
             
    March 31,     December 31,  
    2016     2015  
             
Balance sheet ($000's):            
  Cash and cash equivalents $ 3,024   $ 3,004  
  Senior debt (2)   78,373     100,740  
  Other debt, including current portion   2,760     3,012  
     
(1)   Refer to "Additional Financial Measures" in the Company's MD&A.
(2)   Represents carrying amounts which are at a discount to principal amounts. Refer to Company's Interim Financial Statements for additional details regarding the 2018 and 2020 Debentures.
     

Segovia Operations

First quarter 2016 gold production at Segovia totalled 25,999 ounces, up 8.9% from the fourth quarter of 2015 and up 40.3% from the first quarter a year ago. An increased volume of higher grade material from the contract mining cooperatives enabled the Company to process an average of 730 tpd with head grades averaging 12.9 g/t in the first quarter of 2016, an improvement from 678 tpd at an average head grade of 12.0 g/t in the fourth quarter of 2015 and 500 tpd at head grades averaging 14.1 g/t in the first quarter a year ago. Gran Colombia is continuing with the mine development and mechanization program according to the optimized mine plan developed in 2015 and expects to produce a total of 96,000 to 110,000 at its Segovia Operations for the full year 2016.

The Company's total cash cost results in the first quarter of 2016 saw a continuation of the trend experienced in 2015 as further devaluation of the Colombian peso against the U.S. dollar, increased production volumes reducing fixed costs on a per ounce basis and costs savings all combined to decrease total cash costs at the Segovia Operations to $659 per ounce, 17% lower than reported for the first quarter last year.

Marmato Operations

At the Marmato Underground mine, the Company processed 820 tpd at an average head grade of 2.6 g/t yielding gold production of 5,490 ounces in the first quarter of 2016, down 11.2% from the fourth quarter of 2015 in which it processed 860 tpd at head grades averaging 2.8 g/t and on par with the first quarter a year ago when it processed 813 tpd at head grades averaging 2.6 g/t. The Company expects to produce a total of 24,000 to 28,000 ounces at its Marmato Operations for the full year 2016.

Further devaluation of the Colombian peso also had a positive impact on Marmato's total cash costs per once in the first quarter of 2016 compared with previous quarters and, despite a decline in head grades resulting in lower gold production that contributed to an increase in its total cash costs to $847 per ounce in the current quarter, Marmato's total cash costs per ounce were still 7% better than the first quarter last year.

Outlook

With a total of 43,542 ounces of gold produced through the first four months of 2016, the Company is well on its way towards its annual gold production guidance for 2016 of approximately 120,000 to 138,000 ounces. The results for total cash costs and AISC per ounce for the first quarter of 2016 were also in line with Gran Colombia's expectations. For the full year 2016, Gran Colombia expects its total cash costs to average between $700 and $750 per ounce, which will be influenced by the exchange rate of the Colombian peso relative to the U.S. dollar and by production volumes during the balance of the year. Gran Colombia also anticipates that its average AISC for the full year will be between $850 and $950 per ounce, reflecting an expected increase in the level of capital investment in its Segovia Operations in the second half of 2016.

Since the debt restructuring closed in January 2016, holders of the 2018 Debentures and the 2020 Debentures have elected to convert $2.3 million and $0.7 million, respectively, into a total of 23.5 million common shares, increasing the issued and outstanding common shares to a total of 137,074,520 and reducing the principal amounts of the 2018 Debentures and 2020 Debentures to $68.8 million and $103.3 million, respectively, at May 12, 2016.

Webcast

As a reminder, the Company will host a conference call and webcast on Friday, May 13, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss the results.

Webcast and call-in details are as follows:

Live Event link: http://edge.media-server.com/m/p/7hmyqdxe
Toronto & International: 1 (514) 841-2157
North America Toll Free: 1 (866) 215-5508
Colombia Toll Free: 01 800 9 156 924
Conference ID: 42439708

A replay of the webcast will be available at www.grancolombiagold.com from Friday, May 13, 2016 until Sunday, June 12, 2016.

About Gran Colombia Gold Corp.

Gran Colombia is a Canadian-based gold and silver exploration, development and production company with its primary focus in Colombia. Gran Colombia is currently the largest underground gold and silver producer in Colombia with several underground mines in operation at its Segovia and Marmato Operations. Gran Colombia is in the midst of an expansion and modernization project at its Segovia Operations.

Additional information on Gran Colombia can be found on its website at www.grancolombiagold.com and by reviewing its profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

Cautionary Statement on Forward-Looking Information:

This news release contains "forward-looking information", which may include, but is not limited to, statements with respect to anticipated business plans or strategies. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates", or "believes" or variations (including negative variations) of such words and phrases, or state that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Gran Colombia to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements are described under the caption "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Information Form dated as of March 30, 2016, which is available for view on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this press release and Gran Colombia disclaims, other than as required by law, any obligation to update any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, results, future events, circumstances, or if management's estimates or opinions should change, or otherwise. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, the reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements.

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