LONDON, Nov 11 (Reuters) - South African platinum miner Lonmin posted a forecast-beating pre-tax annual profit of $140 million on Monday, recovering from a heavy loss last year as both sales and an effort to contain cost increases exceeded its targets.
Lonmin, the world’s third-largest primary platinum producer, was at the centre of the labour unrest and violence in South Africa last year that left dozens dead. Lonmin’s finances were left so battered it had to tap shareholders for cash.
“Despite the constraints faced at the start of the financial year our ramp-up was impressive and we met production expectations with costs well under control and with many areas of the business recording their best performance in years,” Chief Executive Officer Ben Magara said.
Lonmin said on Monday that pre-tax profit rose to $140 million for the year to the end of September, compared with a loss of $698 million a year ago and well above a consensus of $83.9 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S Estimates.
Lonmin said it produced 751,000 ounces of platinum in concentrate, its highest in six years, and sold 696,000 ounces, above its forecast of 660,000 ounces.