North American Palladium Ltd. (TSX:PDL) announced the financial and operational results for the three months ended March 31, 2018.
Highlights are as follow:
Q1 2018 Results Summary
- Adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2018 was US$28.4 million compared to US$6.8 million for the same period in 2017.
- Net income was US$5.6 million this quarter compared to a net loss of US$3.8 million for the same period in 2017.
- Underground production was 569,468 tonnes (6,327 tonnes per day) at an average grade of 3.3 grams per tonne compared to 363,136 tonnes (4,035 tonnes per day) at an average grade of 4.4 grams per tonne in the first quarter of 2017.
- Initial production commenced from the Sheriff Pit this quarter and totaled 127,940 tonnes at a grade of 1.27 grams per tonne.
- Underground mining cost per tonne in the first quarter decreased to US$39 compared to US$56 in the same period in 2017.
- Total tonnes milled increased to 1,021,147 in the quarter compared to 458,382 tonnes in the first quarter of 2017, reflecting the return to full-time milling, supplemented by increased underground production, Sheriff Pit ore and additional surface stockpile tonnage.
- The Company produced 57,053 ounces of payable palladium at an all-inclusive sustaining cost (“AISC”) of US$709 per ounce compared to 40,252 ounces of palladium in 2017 at an AISC of US$765.
Jim Gallagher, president and CEO, commented:
Our operational and financial key performance indicators improved significantly this quarter compared to this time last year. Underground production has become consistent, reliable and predictable, and should continue to gradually increase this year as we bring more of the lower grade reserves in the upper part of the mine back into production. This quarter we began initial production from the Sheriff Pit, which is expected to produce higher grade material in the second half of the year. Total mill throughput also continued to increase this quarter. All of this indicates further performance improvements throughout 2018.
The recently announced drill results from our Lac des Iles and regional exploration programs highlight the quality and quantity of targets generated from our extensive property holdings. In addition, we recently commenced resource delineation drilling of the offset south zone, which is our most immediate opportunity to add to the Lac des Iles mineral inventory. We are also seeing positive results from our Greenfields exploration efforts that remain focused on the discovery of another Lac des Iles-type palladium deposit.