Perseus raises prospect of special dividend after cash flourishes

Jeff Quartermaine, MD and CEO

PERSEUS Mining increased cash and bullion to $594m at the close of the September quarter which CEO Jeff Quartermaine said boosted the firm’s chances of organic and inorganic growth or paying out increased returns.

In addition to cash, Perseus has $300m in undrawn debt and is debt free. Said Quartermaine: “We are in an excellent position to either continue to grow our business through organic or inorganic means, or actively return capital to shareholders”.

Elsewhere in its September quarter production update Perseus said it could also adopt “a more aggressive approach to capital management”, suggesting a special dividend.

The Sydney-listed company secured the debt in April ahead of an investment decision on Meyas, a gold project in northern Sudan it bought in February 2022 through the A$230m purchase of Orca Mining, a Toronto-listed gold exploration firm.

However, conflict in Sudan has resulted in Perseus delaying its decision to proceed with Meyas. In June, it returned staff to the region but said plans to make an investment decision in the second half of the year on the project “has been deferred for the foreseeable future”.

Perseus produced 132,804 ounces in the three months to end September at an all-in sustaining cost (AISC) of $937 per ounce. The average gold price received was $1,936/oz, an increase of $3/oz from the June 2023 quarter. But sales of 115,954 oz were 17.5% below the June 2023 quarter due to timing of sales, the company said.