Independence exceeds Nova production guidance

The Nova operation. Image: IGO.

Independence Group’s (IGO) Nova nickel copper operation has snuck above its production guidance for the September quarter, producing 7724 tonnes of nickel and 3490 tonnes of copper.

The result exceeded the guidance of 6750 to 7500 tonnes and improved Nova’s revenue by $62.3 million from the previous quarter, for a total revenue of $184.2 million for the September period.

Nova’s processing plant milled 393,000 tonnes of ore at an average nickel and copper grade of 2.27 per cent and 0.97 per cent respectively.

“Independence Group delivered a solid production result during the quarter, therefore capitalising on higher spot nickel and gold prices,” IGO stated in its quarterly report.

“Nickel, copper and cobalt production all exceeded year to date 2020 financial year pro-rata production guidance.

“Revenue from quarterly sales was calculated using prevailing nickel, copper and cobalt prices of $11.43 per pound, $3.57 per pound and $20.90 per pound respectively.

“This represents an increase of 41 per cent for nickel, a small increase in the cobalt price and a small decrease in the copper price.”

Nova’s nickel and copper results were backed up by IGO’s joint venture Tropicana finishing at the upper end of its pro-rata guidance for gold production, at 123,320 ounces.

Tropicana gold recovery was slightly lower, at 89.4 per cent due to the secondary crushing and high-pressure grinding roll circuits being shut down for maintenance during August. In spite of the shutdown, all work was still completed to schedule.

Despite a lower recovery rate, Tropicana still had higher revenue of $77.3 million from 38,937 ounces of gold, compared with the previous quarter’s revenue of $75.9 million, due to the increased average gold price.

Exploration at Tropicana also continued with results confirming prospectivity at the Southern Traverses and Sanpan areas, south of the mine site.

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