Lower Q3-2007 earnings of US$6.6M vs. earnings of US$8.3M in Q3-2006 substantially due to high peak energy costs
Higher production forecast for Q4-2007 due to higher processing rate
Strategic project to become substantially energy self-sufficient by mid-2008
Dividend of Cdn6.5¢ per share paid in Q3-2007; total dividend payment of $5,802,371 in the quarter
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA – October 31/Amerigo Resources Ltd. (TSX:ARG) (“Amerigo” or the “Company”) reported today results for the quarter ended September 30, 2007 (“Q3-2007”). Significant events are as follows:
Net earnings after tax for the quarter ended September 30, 2007 were $6,581,887, 20% lower than earnings of $8,251,071 in Q3-2006, principally as a result of an increase of $6,353,383 in power costs due to high peak tariffs in Chile during the quarter.
Earnings per share for the quarter ended September 30, 2007 were 7¢ fully diluted, compared to fully diluted earnings per share of 9¢ in Q3-2006.
The Company recorded $3,393,858 in other comprehensive income in Q3-2007 from the fair value appreciation of the Candente Resource Corp. (“Candente”) investment during the quarter. Other comprehensive income is not a component of net earnings.
Compared to Q2-2007, earnings decreased by 36% or $3,750,800. Factors affecting earnings between Q3-2007 and Q2-2007 are lower copper and molybdenum production due to an unusually extended cold spell in Chile and a month-long violent strike by the workers of subcontractors of Codelco, and to adjustments of $390,985 to smelter and refinery costs that were mistakenly understated in Q2-2007.
Production in Q3-2007 was 8.05 million pounds of copper and 153,295 pounds of molybdenum. Production increased 71% in copper and decreased 6% in molybdenum from Q3-2006, a quarter affected by temporary plant shutdowns and restricted tailings flow to MVC. Compared to Q2-2007, production decreased 14% for copper and 25% for moly due to bad weather in Chile and a long strike action by the workers of subcontractors of Codelco.
After the end of Q3-2007, MVC commenced processing additional tailings in the amount of 10,000 to 15,000 tonnes per day which should result in higher production in Q4-2007. It is planned to further increase tailings throughput in 2008 in accordance with MVC’s current contractual arrangements.
Cash flow from operating activities was $4,797,409 or 5¢ per share in Q3-2007, compared to $8,699,696 or 9¢ per share in Q3-2006; the decrease in cash flow from operating activities is due primarily to an increase in receivables in Q3-2007 due to higher sales in the quarter.
Dividend – On July 30, 2007 the Company declared a dividend of $5,802,371or Cdn 6.5¢ per share that was paid on August 31, 2007 to shareholders of record as of August 22, 2007. On February 24, 2007 the Company declared a dividend of $5,286,918 or Cdn 6.5¢ per share that was paid on April 4, 2007 to shareholders of record as of March 27, 2007.
Gross copper selling price was $3.59/lb after settlement adjustments,. Realized copper price (copper revenue net of smelter and refinery charges and including settlement adjustments to prior quarter sales divided by copper pounds sold in the quarter) was $3.21/lb.
Cash costs (the aggregate of smelter, refinery and other charges, production costs net of molybdenum-related net benefits, administration and transportation costs) before El Teniente royalty were $1.78/lb in Q3-2007, compared to cash costs of $1.03/lb in Q3-2006. The increase in cash costs was caused by lower molybdenum by-product credits and higher power costs, mitigated by higher production levels and a significant reduction in smelter and refinery costs pursuant to the terms negotiated for 2007.
Total costs (the aggregate of cash costs, El Teniente royalty, MVC stock-based compensation, depreciation and accretion) for Q3-2007 were $2.49/lb compared to $1.84/lb in Q3-2006. The increase in total costs was driven fundamentally by higher cash costs, mitigated by lower unit costs for El Teniente royalties due to the timing effect of higher copper production in Q3-2007.
The Company has taken the strategic decision to become substantially energy self-sufficient by mid-2008, pending receipt of environmental approval to operate two used 10 megawatt generators. The project will have an estimated cost of $9M.
Capital plant additions in Q3-2007 were $4,496,776, for initial costs related to the self-generation power project, ongoing mill refurbishing, Colihues capital expenditures and improvements to the rougher circuit. Cash payments for capital expenditures in the quarter were $1,184,716, funded from operating cash flow.
Cash balance was $26,378,172 at September 30, 2007 after dividend payments of $11,089,289, an investment of $8,581,681 in Candente and payments of $8,401,863 for capital expenditures on a year-to-date basis.
The information in this news release and the Selected Financial Information contained in the following page should be read in conjunction with the unaudited Consolidated Financial Statements and Management Discussion and Analysis for the quarter and nine months ended September 30, 2007, which will be available at the Company’s website at www.amerigoresources.com and at www.sedar.com.
Amerigo Resources Ltd. is a Canadian junior company producing copper and molybdenum from its MVC operations near Santiago, Chile. Tel: (604) 681-2802; Fax: (604) 682-2802; Web: www.amerigoresources.com; Listing: ARG:TSX
For further information, please contact:
Dr. Klaus Zeitler, President
Amerigo Resources Ltd.
Certain of the information and statements contained herein that are not historical facts, constitute “forward-looking information” within the meaning of the Securities Act (Ontario) and the Securities Act (Alberta) (“Forward-Looking Information”). Forward-Looking Information is often, but not always, identified by the use of words such as “seek”, “anticipate”, “believe”, “plan”, “estimate”, “expect” and “intend”; statements that an event or result is “due” on or “may”, “will”, “should”, “could”, or might” occur or be achieved; and, other similar expressions. More specifically, Forward-Looking Information contained herein includes, without limitation, information concerning future tailings production volumes and the Company's copper and molybdenum production, all of which involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such Forward-Looking Information; including, without limitation, material factors and assumptions relating to, and risks and uncertainties associated with, the supply of tailings from El Teniente and extraction of tailings from the Colihues tailings impoundment, the achievement and maintenance of planned production rates, the evolving legal and political policies of Chile, the volatility in the Chilean economy, military unrest or terrorist actions, metal price fluctuations, favourable governmental relations, the availability of financing for activities when required and on acceptable terms, the estimation of mineral resources and reserves, current and future environmental and regulatory requirements, the availability and timely receipt of permits, approvals and licenses, the availability and timely receipt of permits, approvals and licenses, industrial or environmental accidents, equipment breakdowns, availability of and competition for future mineral acquisition opportunities, availability and cost of insurance, labour disputes, land claims, the inherent uncertainty of production and cost estimates, currency fluctuations, expectations and beliefs of management and other risks and uncertainties, including those described under Risk Factors in the Company’s Annual Information Form dated March 27, 2007, and in each subsequent Management’s Discussion and Analysis. Such Forward-Looking Information is based upon the Company’s assumptions regarding global and Chilean economic, political and market conditions and the price of metals, including copper and molybdenum, and future tailings production volumes and the Company's copper and molybdenum production.. Among the factors that have a direct bearing on the Company’s future results of operations and financial conditions are changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined, interruptions in the supply of fresh tailings from El Teniente, further delays in the extraction of tailings from the Colihues tailings impoundment, a change in government policies, competition, currency fluctuations and restrictions and technological changes, among other things. Should one or more of any of the aforementioned risks and uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from any conclusions, forecasts or projections described in the Forward-Looking Information. Accordingly, readers are advised not to place undue reliance on Forward-Looking Information. Except as required under applicable securities legislation, the Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise Forward-Looking Information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.