Great Panther Mining Ltd (TSE:GPR) (NYSEAMERICAN:GPL) noted a number of key milestones, including the acquisition of Beadell Resources and its Tucano Mine in Brazil, as it posted its results for the quarter ended March 31, 2019.
"Great Panther completed a key strategic milestone in the first quarter of 2019 by closing the acquisition of Beadell Resources and its 100% owned Tucano Mine in Brazil," said president and CEO James Bannantine in a statement. "The acquisition of the Tucano Mine transforms Great Panther into a 200,000 gold equivalent ounce per year intermediate precious metals producer with diversified operations in leading Latin American jurisdictions."
Great Panther operates the Tucano mine in Amapá State, Brazil, and two primary silver mines in Mexico: the Guanajuato Mine Complex (GMC) and the Topia Mine. It also has an advanced stage development project in Peru.
Great Panther completed the acquisition of Beadell Resources Limited in March, which contributed modestly to first quarter results, according to the firm. It holds a 100% interest in the Tucano project, which is located in Amapá State in northern Brazil.
Bannantine noted production and operating costs are already improving at Tucano, a result of the supplemental oxygen plant commissioning completed as of the start of May.
"Tucano has been successfully processing higher grade sulfide ore with better than budgeted recoveries since the end of April," said Bannantine. "GMC had a weak quarter and did not perform to plan, however, we have seen improvements in the grade of ore coming exclusively from the San Ignacio mine and associated plant recoveries since the start of the second quarter. Our operations and geology teams remain focused on optimizing San Ignacio, as well as the dedicated exploration at the Guanajuato Mine to be able to bring it back into production next year. Topia's expansion in production and associated capacity expansion is proceeding ahead of plan."
Great Panther reported revenues of C$16.7 million in 1Q, representing a decrease of $0.3 million or 2% compared to the first quarter of 2018. The company noted this was primarily attributable to the decline in metal prices and higher smelting and refining charges. Its net loss came in at $9.1 million, mostly a result of acquisitions, finance and other income and a decrease in mine operating earnings.
Production costs for 1Q increased by $0.8 million compared to the first quarter of 2018.
Yesterday, shares in New York shed 0.53% to stand at $0.78. In Toronto, shares were unchanged at $1.05.
Great Panther said the key focus for 2019 will be to optimize operations at Tucano including implementing cost-saving and efficiency measures to improve profitability and reduce costs.
The recent successful commissioning of the supplemental liquid oxygen supply system is expected to increase production and reduce unit costs.
On a conference call, Bannantine said that already within the firm's budget were plans to replace the primary crusher at Tocano too, while keeping its target of 300,000 tonnes of throughput a month.
"We think we can do that with limited production interruption," he said.
On Thursday, Great Panther shares were down 3.81% to $1.01 in Toronto and fell nearly 3% in New York at $0.76.
Contact Katie Lewis at [email protected]
--Updates with details on outlook and share price---