Announcements 2022

…….organic growth projects on track

Northam Platinum Holdings Limited (Northam Holdings) today reported results for the first half of the 2022 financial year. The interim results are available on the Northam Holdings website at

Operational performance was adversely affected by the ongoing impact of COVID-19, particularly at Zondereinde, and by regional community unrest in the eastern bushveld on the Booysendal operation.


  • 60.3% growth in headline earnings per share to 961.5 cents
  • A reduction of 22.2% in the issued shares of the group
  • Production largely unchanged – 351 359 oz 4E
  • 16.8% growth in sales revenue to R13.9 billion
  • Operating profit increases to R5.9 billion, with a margin of 42.2%
  • Free cash flow of R541.0 million
  • R2.3 billion investment in capex, with all projects on track


  • Zondereinde still impacted by COVID-19
  • Eastern limb community unrest affects Booysendal production
  • Unit cash costs higher by 18.6%


  • New group structure established and listing of Northam Holdings
  • Value unlock for BBBEE and share repurchase of circa 30%
  • Strategic investment of 34.68% in Royal Bafokeng Platinum Limited (RBPlat)
  • Introduction of Royal Bafokeng Holdings Proprietary Limited (RBH) as a significant empowerment shareholder
  • Organic growth projects progressing well


  H1 F2022 H1 F2021 Variance
Mill throughput (tonnes) 3 898 217 4 012 697 (2.9%)
Equivalent refined metal production (oz 4E) 351 359 352 741 (0.4%)
Total refined metal production (oz 4E) 298 797 322 170 (7.3%)
Chrome concentrate produced (tonnes) 430 697 521 086 (17.3%)
Cash costs/refined Pt oz (ZAR/Pt oz) 32 814 27 660 (18.6%)
Operating profit (ZAR) R5.9bn R5.2bn 12.7% 

A challenging operational environment impacted the group’s performance. Zondereinde was adversely affected by elevated medical absences associated with COVID-19, and also suffered two mining-related fatalities. Community unrest in the eastern Bushveld region led to production interruptions at Booysendal. Despite this, equivalent refined metal from own operations dropped only marginally to 351 359 oz 4E (H1 F2021: 352 741 oz 4E). Lower volumes and the impact of higher general mining inflation on costs added pressure, increasing the unit cash cost per equivalent refined platinum ounce by 18.6% to R32 814/Pt oz (H1 F2021: R27 660/Pt oz).

Expansionary projects remain on track with good progress at the Zondereinde Western extension and at Booysendal’s South mine. Booysendal’s fatality-free record remains intact with 7 million shifts since inception. Eland mine continues to ramp-up and the addition of the recently acquired Maroelabult section adds considerable synergistic benefits.

Significant growth in sustaining capital to R776.9 million (largely owing to the smelter furnace rebuild at Zondereinde and fleet replacements at Booysendal) (H1 F2021: R380.5 million) led to an increase in total group capex, to R2.3 billion (H1 F2021: R1.3 billion). Group capital expenditure for the full financial year is forecast to amount to R4.6 billion.

At Zondereinde mine, stoping is ramping up within the Western extension section, the deepening project has made further progress and reaming of number 3 shaft is on track. At the metallurgical facilities, upgrades to the material handling infrastructure together with the planned rebuild of furnace 1 were completed. Capacity upgrades at the base metal removal plant have also begun, aligning with the group’s growth profile.

Booysendal South development is on track. Construction of surface infrastructure has been completed and underground development and stoping ramp-up at the Central UG2 modules is progressing. Decline development at the South Merensky module is on track. Underground stoping has started at the BS4 UG2 module and will ramp up over the coming 12 months. The North aerial rope conveyor was commissioned in December 2021 and is operating within design parameters.

At Eland mine, processing of surface sources continues. Development of the Kukama decline system has progressed well, as has strike development to connect with Maroelabult mine. Underground stoping ramp-up is in progress. In addition, open-pit mining of UG2 commenced in the eastern portion of the mining right during the first quarter. First ore was delivered to the concentrator during the second quarter.


Turning to the market, Northam CEO Paul Dunne points to the dearth of mining investment for over a decade, which, he says, has a consequence for supply: “There is a systemic global primary supply problem and it is the scarcity of new mining projects to replace the depleting profiles of currently operating, mature mines.”

“The eastern and western limbs of the Bushveld Complex host ore bodies with favourable platinum and rhodium loadings. These deposits are extremely rare and their intrinsic value will grow over time,” says Dunne.


Sales revenue for the six months ended 31 December 2021 was R13.9 billion, an increase of 16.8% compared to the revenue of R11.9 billion reported in the six months ended 31 December 2020 (H1 F2021). The increase in sales revenue was as a result of higher USD basket prices which was offset by a drop in sales volumes on a 4E basis and a stronger ZAR/USD exchange rate, compared to H1 F2021. 4E sales volumes were impacted by the planned rebuild and upgrade of smelter furnace 1 at the Zondereinde metallurgical complex, successfully completed at the end of October 2021.

Despite the operational and inflationary challenges, operating profit increased by 12.7%. Operating profit was impacted by the 16.8% increase in sales revenue which was partially offset by a corresponding 20.0% increase in cost of sales, resulting in an operating profit of R5.9 billion for the period under review (H1 F2021: R5.2 billion). This translates to an operating profit margin of 42.2% (H1 F2021: 43.7%). EBITDA rose by 19.1% to R6.4 billion (H1 F2021: R5.4 billion).

The group’s financial results were affected by the challenging operational performance which impacted sales volumes, and in turn impacted operating profit, and the resultant cash position of the group. The cash position was further impacted by the acceleration of the maturity of the Zambezi BEE transaction, as well as the acquisition of the RBPlat shares.

During the period under review the group generated cash flows from operations amounting to R2.9 billion (H1 F2021: R3.1 billion). Cash generated was applied towards both the composite transaction, resulting in an outflow of cash in excess of R6.6 billion, and the acquisition of the investment in RBPlat amounting to an outflow of R4.1 billion during the period under review. This resulted in net debt increasing to R14.3 billion, excluding the deferred portion of the purchase consideration relating to the acquisition of the RBPlat shares of R5.7 billion.

As previously communicated to shareholders, Northam is comfortable with a self-imposed long-term net debt to EBITDA ratio of 1 to 1 in the pursuance of the group’s growth strategy. Excluding the deferred acquisition consideration, which relates to a corresponding cash generative underlying asset with no net debt, the net debt ratio as at 31 December 2021 (expressed on a rolling 12-month basis) amounted to 0.81. Inclusive of the deferred acquisition consideration, the net debt ratio was 1.13. The ongoing release of metal built up ahead of the smelter following the recommissioning of furnace 1, as well as a normalisation of the metal pipeline following the introduction of a second precious metal refiner, combined with the strong current metal price environment and the receipt by Northam of the dividend declared by RBPlat subsequent to the period end, will contribute to normalising the net debt ratio by 31 December 2022.


Northam’s strategic investment in RBPlat amounts to a holding of 34.68%. We also have options and rights of first refusal to acquire a further 3.29% of the RBPlat shares.

CEO Paul Dunne said today: “Our investment in RBPlat creates significant long-term optionality for Northam. It aligns perfectly with our growth, sustainability and diversification strategy, and the consequent introduction of RBH as a significant shareholder further strengthens our empowerment credentials.”

In summary, the RBPlat investment is underpinned by the following important underlying factors:

  • Northam’s view on the PGM market
  • The Northam growth strategy and future opportunities
  • Operational risk reduction
  • Empowerment and transformation
  • Community and labour relations

For the period under review, the group’s share of earnings from RBPlat amounted to R128.4 million. Furthermore, a dividend was declared subsequent to the period end, of which the group’s share was R536.2 million.


  • Safety performance and health and wellness of our employees
  • Exchange rate and commodity prices volatility
  • Reliability of energy supply
  • Management of production and performance targets
  • Effective project execution
  • Effective cost control
  • Operational and financial performance of RBPlat

The global economic outlook remains uncertain, resulting in volatile metal markets and exchange rates. The group’s financial performance is influenced by the exchange rate and commodity prices together with the stability of our operating environment. Management is confident that Northam is in a position to take advantage of improved market conditions going forward whilst reducing our operational risk profile and improving our business resilience.

R&A Strategic Communications, Johannesburg, Tel +27 (0)11 880 3924

  • Marion Brower +27 71 493 0387
  • Memory Johnstone +27 82 719 3081