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Lonmin asks investors for £270m amid price squeeze

Platinum mining giant Lonmin announced a $407 million (£270m) cash call on shareholders yesterday to cater for “potentially adverse” external factors, including a continuation of the metal’s weak pricing environment.

The plea came as Lonmin revealed a $143m loss in the year to end-September, compared with a $46m profit a year ago.

The group said the $369m net proceeds of the rights issue would also be used to implement an ongoing cost restructuring that has seen 3,136 workers go from the company in the past six months, and to cut ­borrowings.

Lonmin said sales of platinum, whose uses range from catalytic converters for motor engines to jewellery, totalled 751,560 ounces in the year – the highest since 2007.

Ben Magara, chief executive of the company, whose operations are overwhelmingly in South Africa, said 2015 had been “a tough year… given the adverse pricing environment and the imminent maturity of our debt facilities in 2016”.

Source: scotsman


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SAfrican gold mines set date for wage talks

The wage negotiations in the gold mining sector will start in two weeks, the Chamber of Mines said on Tuesday.

“The industry is at a crossroad. We need a measured and strategic conversation between partners with the aim of jointly considering ways to achieve a sustainable industry that attracts investment and offers a level of employment security within realistic parameters,” said Chamber of Mines chief negotiator, Elize Strydom.

“This clearly requires a different approach to negotiations – an approach that provides for in-depth, focused engagements and joint solution-seeking discussions. The gold companies will be tabling a proposal on an economic and social sustainability compact for the long-term benefit of all the stakeholders.”

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Representatives from AngloGold Ashanti, Evander Gold Mines, Harmony, Sibanye Gold and Village Main Reef met on Tuesday with representatives from the Association of Mining and Construction Workers Union (Amcu), the National Union of Mine workers (NUM), Solidarity and Uasa to discuss the parties’ approach to the 2015 wage negotiations and the process to be followed.

The gold producers proposed to the unions that engagement be conducted at a venue that provided for both large plenary and focused meetings that could not be provided for in the Chamber of Mines’ building, as well as an independent chairperson.

“These proposals were accepted by all four unions. On this basis, the companies advise that gold wage negotiations will commence on 22 June 2015, and are scheduled for three days,” said Strydom.

Source: citizen


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