Ivernia Inc.

TSX : IVW


Ivernia Inc.

March 24, 2014 17:50 ET

Ivernia Reports Fourth Quarter 2013 and Year Ended December 31, 2013 Financial Results

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 24, 2014) -

All Dollar Amounts are in U.S. Dollars ("US$") Unless Otherwise Indicated

Ivernia Inc. (collectively with its subsidiaries "Ivernia" or the "Company") (TSX:IVW) today reported its fourth quarter 2013 and year ended December 31, 2013 financial results. Principal activities during the fourth quarter of 2013 continued around the focused ramping up of operations at its wholly-owned Paroo Station Mine (the "Mine" or the "Mining Operations") which restarted in early April 2013. Transportation operations continued their staged increased in conjunction with the ramp-up of the operations.

In the fourth quarter, we generated net income before tax of $0.6 million and were cash flow positive with a $1.5 million net increase in cash over the end of the third quarter of 2013. This compares to a net increase in cash flow of $1.2 million in the third quarter of 2013 over the end of the second quarter. We generated a non-cash net loss of $16.9 million for the fourth quarter, primarily relating to the tax consolidation of our Australian-based subsidiaries and associated reset of the tax base of certain assets.

FOURTH QUARTER AND YEAR ENDED 2013 HIGHLIGHTS

Financial

  • Revenue of $95.4 million for the year and $36.2 million for the fourth quarter.
  • Sale of 74,100 tonnes of concentrate containing 47,700 tonnes of lead for the year and 30,200 tonnes of concentrate containing 19,600 tonnes of lead for the fourth quarter.
  • Gross profit of $19.4 million for the year (2012: gross loss of $10.0 million) and $12.4 million (2012: gross loss of $2.9 million) for the fourth quarter.
  • Cash flow positive in the fourth quarter, with a $1.5 million net increase in cash over the third quarter of 2013.
  • Net income before tax for the fourth quarter of $0.6 million.
  • Net loss after tax of $16.9 million for the fourth quarter, primarily a non-cash loss relating to the tax consolidation of our Australian-based subsidiaries.
  • On July 1, 2013 we determined that a change in events and circumstances have led to a change in functional currency from the A$ to the US$ at our Australian subsidiaries.
  • On March 24, 2014, the Company announced that it had entered into a binding term sheet to amend the credit facility with Sprott Resource Lending Partnership ("Sprott") to postpone the commencement of repayment of principal instalments from March 31, 2014 to June 30, 2014 and to allow the C$20 million principal to be repaid in equal monthly instalments over a 24 month period ending May 31, 2016 ("Amended Sprott Facility"). The Company expects to close the Amended Sprott Facility on or before March 31, 2014.
  • A condition subsequent of the Amended Sprott Facility is that the Company close an equity offering for gross proceeds of not less than C$5 million by April 30, 2014, for general working capital purposes.

Operational

  • Operations at the Mine recommenced in April 2013 and operated without any significant interruption during the remainder of 2013, subject only to the rail transportation disruption previously disclosed in our news release dated January 30, 2014.
  • We met the 2013 guidance released on May 13, 2013 (the "2013 Guidance") for production and sales and we reached full production levels by the end of 2013.
  • We produced 68,100 tonnes of concentrate containing 44,000 tonnes of lead metal for the year and 27,500 tonnes of concentrate containing 17,900 tonnes of lead metal for the fourth quarter.
  • This level of production for the fourth quarter was a new quarterly record since operations changed to bagging concentrate in 2009.
  • For 2014, we expect to produce between 80,000 to 85,000 tonnes of lead contained in concentrate and to sell between 80,000 to 85,000 tonnes of lead contained in concentrate.
  • The Company announced the appointment of an interim Chief Financial Officer ("CFO") following the departure of the former CFO on September 30, 2013.

FINANCIAL AND OPERATING HIGHLIGHTS

The following table is a summary of Ivernia's financial and operating highlights for the three months and twelve months ended December 31, 2013, and 2012.

Three months ended December 31, Year ended December 31,
(in thousands of United States dollars, unless otherwise indicated and per share amounts) 2013 2012 2013 2012
$ $ $ $
Financial Highlights
Revenue(1) 36,178 - 95,425 -
Gross profit/(loss) 12,420 (2,911 ) 19,378 (10,032 )
Net (loss)/income (16,914 ) 2,678 (51,384 ) (8,165 )
Basic loss earnings per share (0.02 ) 0.00 (0.07 ) (0.01 )
Cash flow provided by (used in) operating activities 1,493 (6,067 ) (4,830 ) (20,016 )
Operating Highlights
Ore milled - (000's tonnes) 344.4 - 835.8 -
Average head grade - (% lead) 6.7 % - 7.1 % -
Recovery - (%) 77.7 % - 74.6 % -
Concentrate produced - (000's dry tonnes) 27.5 - 68.1 -
Concentrate sold - (000's dry tonnes) 30.3 - 74.1 -
Lead metal in concentrate produced - (000's tonnes) 17.9 - 44.0 -
Lead metal in concentrate sold - (000's tonnes) 19.6 - 47.7 -
Concentrate inventory - (000's of dry tonnes) 3.9 10.1 3.9 10.1
Average lead price - LME cash settlement- ($ per pound) (2) 0.96 - 0.95 -
Ivernia's average lead sale price - ($ per pound) 0.96 - 0.96 -
Cash cost per pound sold - ($ per pound)(3) N/A N/A N/A N/A
(1) The Mine was placed on full care and maintenance in April 2011. In April 2013, the Company recommenced operations.
(2) Average lead price London Metal Exchange ("LME") cash settlement is calculated from April 4, 2013 onwards, being the date restart of operations.
(3) Cash cost per pound sold is a non-IFRS measure. Cash cost of lead sold is not currently meaningful as the Mine worked through the issues surrounding transportation and then care and maintenance during 2011 through 2013. Once the Mine achieves steady state production run rates information about the cash cost of lead sold will be reintroduced.
(4) The figures for lead metal in concentrate sold for the fourth quarter of 2013 and year ended December 31, 2013 have been adjusted from the figures released on January 30, 2014 to account for the final settlement of weights and assays for shipped concentrate during these periods.

OPERATIONS REVIEW

Principal activities during the fourth quarter of 2013 continued around the focused ramping up of operations at the Mine which restarted in early April 2013 after being on care and maintenance since April 2011. During the fourth quarter, we produced 27,500 tonnes of concentrate containing 17,900 tonnes of lead metal and sold 30,300 tonnes of concentrate containing 19,600 tonnes of lead metal. Transportation operations continued their staged increased in conjunction with the ramp-up of the operations. The major challenges encountered during the quarter were associated with increasing plant stability after the restart of processing operations.

In the fourth quarter, we generated net income before tax of $0.6 million and were cash flow positive with a $1.5 million net increase in cash over the end of the third quarter of 2013. This compares to a net increase in cash flow of $1.2 million in the third quarter of 2013 over the end of the second quarter. We generated a non-cash net loss of $16.9 million for the fourth quarter, primarily relating to the tax consolidation of our Australian-based subsidiaries and associated reset of the tax base of certain assets.

In the first quarter of 2014 and beyond, to improve its financial results, we will continue to focus on increasing concentrate production, improving plant recoveries and advancing cost reduction projects. See "Mine Update and Production Ramp-Up". However, the Company's revenues will continue to be subject to a number of factors; primarily, lead metal prices, A$/US$ exchange rate and demand for lead concentrate.

A full discussion of the events for the three year period to December 31, 2013, is contained in the annual information form dated March 24, 2014 (the "2013 AIF") under the heading "Three-Year History - Operations". The 2013 AIF is available on the Ivernia web site at www.ivernia.com and on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

The table below summarizes quarterly Mine production, process production, shipments and inventories for the three months and year ended December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2012:

Three months
ended

December 31,
2013
Three months
ended
December 31,
2012
Year ended
December 31,
2013
Year ended
December 31,
2012
Mining
Ore mined - 000's tonnes(1) 375.2 - 896.5 -
Total ore and waste mined - 000's tonnes 729.2 - 1,501.8 -
Processing
Ore milled - 000's tonnes 344.4 - 835.8 -
Average head grade - % lead 6.7% - 7.1% -
Average recovery - % 77.7% - 74.6% -
Concentrate produced - 000's dry tonnes 27.5 - 68.1 -
Concentrate grade - % lead 65.1% - 64.7% -
Lead metal in concentrate produced - 000's tonnes 17.9 - 44.0 -
Sales and inventories
Concentrate sold - 000's dry tonnes 30.3 - 74.1 -
Concentrate grade - % lead 64.6% - 64.4% -
Lead metal in concentrate sold - 000's tonnes 19.6 - 47.7
Concentrate inventory - 000's dry tonnes 3.9 10.1 3.9 10.1
(1) Ore mined does not include low grade ore
(2) Low grade ore is 1.5% to 2.5% lead

The Mine was not operational during 2012 and the first quarter of 2013. In April, 2013, the Company recommenced operations at the Mine.

Mine Update and Production Ramp-up

On April 5, 2013, milling and processing operations recommenced at the Mine and, at the end of April, mining operations recommenced. Performance has continued to steadily improve and ramp up over the fourth quarter as the workforce continues to gain experience with the ore processing plant. Milling rates, production and plant performance were all generally in line with expectations for the quarter.

The primary focus of site management in the fourth quarter was to increase workforce skills and stabilize and steadily increase milling rates.

During the fourth quarter of 2013, the mill treated 344,400 dry metric tonnes of ore with an average head grade of 6.7% lead. The plant recovered an average of 77.7% of the lead, to produce approximately 27,500 dry metric tonnes of concentrate with an average grade of 65.1% containing 17,900 tonnes of lead metal. As of December 31, 2013, the Company had 3,916 dry metric tonnes of concentrate inventory of which 680 dry metric tonnes of concentrate was at the Mine and the remainder was in transit. Towards the end of the quarter ore grades fell which had a minor impact on output.

We have now recruited our full complement of personnel at the Mine. There currently appears to be more availability of skills available in Western Australia given that a number of projects and companies have delayed, reduced or shut down operations in the State.

In the second half of January 2014, the Mine site experienced an exceptionally high amount of rainfall which caused the rail line from Leonora to Kalgoorlie to suffer significant damage resulting in a suspension of all rail transportation on that line. During the period of rail transportation suspension, access to the Mine was also limited which had a minor impact on operations. On February 7, 2014, the Company announced that regular transportation operations had resumed. While the Company believes that it was able to mitigate the length of time that it was not transporting as a result of the rainfall event, the Company still expects that there will be some impact on its financial results for the first quarter of 2014. In particular, the Company expects a reduction in revenue due to the sales and production disruptions. The Company expects that lost production and sales of concentrate in the first quarter will be recouped over the balance of 2014.

During 2014, we will continue to focus on debottlenecking of the processing plant, increasing surge capacity throughout the concentrate handling and logistics chain and focus on reducing the variability of ore delivered to the processing plant. In addition, we are undertaking work to convert the Mine's generator sets in the Mine's onsite power station from diesel fuel to pure natural gas. The reduction of diesel consumption is expected to significantly reduce the site's power costs and reduce the Mine's carbon emissions. While management is seeking to reduce operational costs in 2014, the Company may be subject to new costs and expenses in 2014. In particular, on July 1, 2014, the Western Australian Government's proposed mining rehabilitation fund ("MRF") is expected to come into force which may increase overall rehabilitation costs, through required contributions to the MRF, if existing performance bonds are not refunded.

Production Outlook

In the first quarter of 2014, we expect to produce and sell between 15,000 to 20,000 tonnes of lead contained in concentrate.

We expect to produce and sell, annually, between 80,000 and 85,000 tonnes of lead contained in concentrate for 2014 and beyond ("2014 Guidance"). The 2014 Guidance is a forward-looking statement based on certain material factors and assumptions. See "Forward-Looking Statements".

Capital Resources and Working Capital Requirements

As of December 31, 2013, the Company had approximately $7.1 million in cash and cash equivalents. While the Company had a working capital deficiency as at December 31, 2013 of approximately $7.1 million due, in part, to the current portion of the long term debt, the Financing Committee of the Board of Directors has been working with management since the end 2013 to help ensure that the Company remains cash flow positive in 2014 and improve the Company's working capital position. The Finance Committee and management have determined that given the budgeted expenditures for 2014, the state of lead prices in recent months, interest payments, the commencement of principal repayments under the Sprott Facility on March 31, 2014 and the potentially significant consequences that even a minor transportation disruption (such as the one that occurred in late January 2014) could have on the Company's cash flows, that it was necessary for the Company to take proactive steps to improve its working capital position and to reduce the risk of the Company becoming cash flow negative in 2014. Accordingly, the Finance Committee engaged in discussions with Sprott which resulted in executing a binding term sheet to amend the Sprott Facility. The Amended Sprott Facility and related equity offering, when closed, will improve the Company's working capital position. In particular, the Amended Sprott Facility will serve to do this by delaying the commencement of principal repayments by three months and allowing Ivernia to repay the C$20 million principal in equal monthly instalments of C$833,333 over 24 months compared to monthly instalments of C$1,666,667 over 12 months. The related equity offering of C$5 million will also support the Company's financial position. Management expects that the Company will remain cash flow positive for 2014, assuming current lead prices and foreign exchange rates do not materially deteriorate. However, ongoing cash flow from operating activities continues to be exposed to fluctuations in metal prices, production and shipping rates, the A$/US$ exchange rate and demand for lead concentrate. See "Risk Factors - Funding Requirements" in the 2013 AIF and "Forward-Looking Statements" below. If management considers cash flow from operating activities to be insufficient to fund non-operating activities going forward or that working capital will not be sufficient to meet the covenants under the Amended Sprott Facility, the Company may need to consider additional financing in the future.

The Sprott Facility contains a covenant that requires the Company to maintain a working capital ratio of not less than 1.25 to 1.00 (excluding any Sprott and Enirgi payments classified as current). As at December 31, 2013, the adjusted current ratio was 1.47 to 1.00. The current ratio at September 30, 2013 was 1.33 and improved over the fourth quarter of 2013 as operational performance improved. The Company believes that the current ratio will continue to improve in the first quarter of 2014.

Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves Estimates

On March 24, 2014, the Company released updated estimates of mineral resources and mineral reserves in its 2013 AIF and management's discussion & analysis for the year ended December 31, 2013 dated March 24, 2014 ("2013 MD&A") . The mineral resources and mineral reserves represent the same resources and reserves from the technical report dated and effective March 30, 2011 (the "2011 Technical Report") prepared by SRK Consulting (Australasia) Pty Ltd. depleted by mining activities in 2011 and 2013. There were no mining activities in 2012. A copy of the 2011 Technical Report, 2013 AIF and 2013 MD&A are filed on SEDAR and are available at www.sedar.com and on the Ivernia website at www.ivernia.ca.

Management's Discussion and Analysis and Consolidated Financial Statements

Ivernia's audited financial statements and management's discussion and analysis for the three months and twelve months ended December 31, 2013 were filed today and will be available on the Ivernia website at www.ivernia.com or SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

About Ivernia

Ivernia is an international base metal mining company and the owner of the Paroo Station Mine, located in Western Australia. Ivernia trades under the symbol "IVW" on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Ivernia and the Mining Operations operate under a management services arrangement with Enirgi Group Corporation, Ivernia's majority shareholder.

Additional information on Ivernia is available on the Company's website at www.ivernia.com and at SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements contained in this news release are forward-looking information within the meaning of securities laws. All statements included herein (other than statements of historical facts) which address activities, events or developments that management anticipates will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements, including statements as to the following: the closing of the Amended Sprott Facility and related equity offering, the 2014 production and sales guidance or other future targets and estimates for production and sales, the Company's ability to meet its working capital needs and debt repayments in the near term, projections with respect to cash flows and working capital, any additional financing requirements to operate the Mine, the cost and timing for completion of capital projects necessary for ongoing operations, the Company's ability to comply with the new transportation and operating conditions for the Mine, capital expenditures, operating costs, cash costs, mineral resources, mineral reserves, life of mine, recovery rates, grades and prices, business strategies and measures to implement such strategies, competitive strengths, estimated goals and plans for Ivernia's future business operations, lead market outlook and other such matters. Forward-looking statements are often, but not always, identified by the use of words such as "seek", "anticipate", "contemplate", "target", "believe", "plan", "estimate", "expect", and "intend" and statements that an event or result "may", "will", "can", "should", "could" or "might" occur or be achieved and other similar expressions. These statements are based upon certain reasonable factors, assumptions and analyses made by management in light of its experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors management believes are appropriate in the circumstances. However, whether actual results and developments will conform with management's expectations is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including factors underlying management's assumptions, such as, expected concentrate sales, the costs and other capital expenditures required to maintain operations and transportation, the timing, need and ability to raise any additional financing
and the risks relating to ramping up mining and milling throughput and operations, funding requirements, operations being placed on care and maintenance, matters relating to regulatory compliance and approvals, shareholder dilution, matters relating to public opinion, presence of a majority shareholder and management services agreements, matters related to the Esperance settlement and shipments through the Port of Fremantle, regulatory proceedings and litigation and general operating risks such as metal price volatility, lead carbonate concentrate treatment charges, exchange rates, the fact that the Company has a single mineral property, health and safety, environmental factors, mining risks, metallurgy, labour and employment regulations, government regulations, insurance, dependence on key personnel, constraints on cash distribution from the Mine, the nature of mineral exploration and development and common share price volatility. Additional factors and
considerations are discussed in the Company's most recent annual information form and elsewhere in other documents filed from time to time by Ivernia with Canadian securities regulatory authorities. While Ivernia considers these assumptions to be reasonable based on information currently available to it, they may prove to be incorrect. These factors may cause the actual results of the Company to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements, and there can be no assurance that the actual results or developments anticipated by management will be realized or, even if substantially realized, that they will have the expected results on the Company. Undue importance should not be placed on forward-looking information nor should reliance be placed upon this information as of any other date. Except as required by law, while it may elect to, Ivernia is under no obligation and does not undertake to update this information at any particular time.

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