Solid Performance as Lucapa Sells $102m Rough in 2023

Lucapa reported a slight increase in total rough sales for FY2023 in what it described as a solid performance.

The Australian miner announced revenues of $102.2m, up by 1 per cent on the previous year.

Q4 earnings from its two mines – Lulo in Angola and Mothae in Lesotho – slipped by 1 per cent to $40.8m.

During the year Lucapa sold 11 diamonds from Lulo that fetched a total of $32.7m at two Q4 tenders in Q4. It also recovered two Type IIa diamonds from Lulo, a 208-ct and a 235-ct, the second largest recovery since commercial operations started in 2015.

“Both mines delivered a solid performance against processing and production targets in Q4 and we are pleased with the full year results which saw group guidance achieved,” said managing director Nick Selby.

Mothae performed well despite experiencing a lower dollar per carat average in Q4, which impacted its overall diamond price for the year. Lulo had a good run which saw its high-value recoveries attract firm prices at tender.”

Lulo recovered fewer carats than forecast (30,585) but achieved an average $2,700 per carat, well up on the forecast of $2,300. Mothae recovered more carats that forecast but saw average price per carat down from guidance of $1,000 to an actual $775.

Lucapa said in its ASX announcement that the overall diamond price index began to trend upwards towards the end of 2023, because of India’s two-month moratorium and EU sanctions on Russian goods.
“Tightening economic conditions imposed by central banks and a surge in inflation continues to impact discretionary spending on items such as diamond jewellery,” it said.

“However according to media reports at the end of 2023, there are signs the US market is recovering, however the Chinese market remains slow.”

Lucapa holds a 40 per cent stake in Lulo. The remainder is owned by Angola’s national diamond company Endiama (32 per cent) and by private Angolan company Rosas & Petalas (28 per cent). Lucapa holds a 70 per cent stake in Mothae. The government of Lesotho holds the remaining 30 per cent.

Source: IDEX