Franco-Nevada delivered both a strong top-line and bottom-line performance, beating average analyst forecasts by comfortable margins.
The quarter benefited from an initial contribution from the First Quantum Cobre Panama gold stream, and from the newly acquired Marcellus energy stream.
Earnings came in at US$101.6 million, or 54c per share, better than the consensus estimate of 45c/share. Revenue came in at $235.7 million, beating the consensus estimate of $221.9 million.
Speaking on a conference call, COO Paul Brink said the company expected gold-equivalent ounces delivered under the Cobre Panama contract to be at the high end of guidance, close to 40,000GEOs in 2019.
Overall, the company tightened its guidance to 490,000-500,000GEOs, representing the upper end of the previous guidance range of 465,000-500,000GEOs.
In the third quarter, Franco-Nevada reported production of 133,219GEOs, up 11% year-on-year from 120,000GEOs and a first $37.5 million in revenue from energy.
Franco-Nevada had $245 million drawn on its debt facilities as at September 30. It had subsequently repaid a further $65 million, leaving $180 million in current debt outstanding.
"We're seeing good acquisition opportunities at present. We are most active on the mining side," Brink said.
"In precious metals, there is potential for both smaller transactions that's less than $100 million, mid-size transactions greater than $500 million and we're also seeing some larger transactions upwards of $1 billion. We continue to be opportunistic and regarding other commodities, we believe we have room for incremental non-precious transactions.
"As always, we are positioned to make substantial investments and currently have available capital of $1.4 billion."
CIBC Institutional Equity Research analyst Cosmos Chiu likes the Franco-Nevada story so much they reiterated the company as a ‘top pick' in the precious metals space. Chiu confirmed an ‘outperformer' rating with a C$143 share price target.
The company's equity (TSX:FNV) is up 55% over the past 12 months at $130.41, flirting with the 12-month high of $133.92. The company has a market capitalisation of $24.5 billion.