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Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues

Canada-focused gold producer Wesdome may need to lower its 2022 production guidance following operational issues in the second quarter, the company said.
Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues Wesdome's strong run rattled by 'one-off' issues

Wesdome's Eagle River

"During Q2, there were a number of one-time operational issues that impacted production at both sites," Wesdome's president and CEO Duncan Middlemiss said.

Production at the Ontario-located Eagle River mine, of 17,759 ounces (down 40% year on year), was lower than budget to due a manufacturing defect on a new hoist rope which resulted in two weeks of lower productivity, he said.

And one of the leach tanks at the mill, which had previously scheduled to be replaced later this year, failed in mid-June and impacted almost a week of mill production, he said.

"At Kiena, the global supply chain challenges which delayed delivery of the underground equipment in Q1, have also delayed delivery of key electrical components for the completion of the paste backfill plant.

"Consequently, the mining rate has been slower to ramp up which now puts us approximately 3-4 months behind our original 2022 plan," he said.

The Kiena mine in Quebec saw production unchanged year on year at 8,914oz.

The company's total gold production fell 10% year on year to 27,240oz, which significantly missed analyst forecasts.

It fell below Canaccord Genuity Capital Markets and National Bank of Canada forecast by 35% and 32%, respectively.

"We note that if the company misses its original production guidance for 2022, this will mark the first time WDO has missed its production guidance since 2017, Mr. Middlemiss' first full year as CEO," CG's Michael Fairbairn said.

"We also note that WDO's press release only made mention of a potential revision to production guidance; however, given WDO's operational challenges in H1/22, the current inflationary environment, and lingering COVID-related challenges, we believe a revision of cost guidance may now also be on the table," he said.

Wesdome is re-evaluating the guidance and expects to provide an update on 10 August.

Wesdome's share price was C$10.88 (US$8.29) on July 14. The company has a market capitalization of C$1.55 billion.