New Hope rides to a record on back of Bengalla

New Hope Group is benefitting from its growing interest in the Bengalla Mining Company.

The company has announced record net profit after tax (NPAT) of $159.8 million for the half year ending January 31, a new mark it attributed to the higher stake it has secured in Bengalla.

New Hope last year increased its share in Bengalla from 40 per cent to 70 per cent through deals with Wesfarmers, Taipower and Mitsui.

“This strong result is due to a number of factors, not the least being the company’s increased stake in the Bengalla coal mine,” New Hope managing director Shane Stephan said.

“The acquisition of an additional 30 per cent interest in Bengalla has brought our ownership to 70 per cent.”

The record NPAT represented a year-on-year (YoY) increase of 33 per cent on the $120.3 million recorded to the end of January 2018.

New Hope’s total revenue for the first half period was $616.7 million, 21 per cent higher than the previous year, while coal production at Bengalla was 2.4 million tonnes, a 23 per cent increase.

New Hope is also in the process of purchasing Mitsui’s 10 per cent share in Bengalla for $215 million, which will give the company an 80 per cent share of the project.

Despite the Bengalla positivity, Stephan said New Hope needed to secure necessary approvals to continue at the New Acland coal mine in Queensland.

“The Queensland Land Court decision to recommend the approval of stage three and subsequent decision by the Department of Environment and Science to grant the application to amend the Environmental Authority is welcomed,” he said.

“However we have a number of other steps to go through before the future of the mine is secured.”

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