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Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss

Weak metallurgical coal prices coupled with low production from the Kestrel mine in Queensland, Australia, saw London royalty company Anglo Pacific Group swing to a net loss in 2020, but a final dividend of 3.75p meant the company’s total payout was unchanged from 2019 at 9p per share.
Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss Anglo Pacific bets on battery metals after 2020 loss

Royalties from the Kestrel coal mine in Queensland fell 51% in 2020 due to lower production volumes

The company posted a £18.6 million net loss for 2020 versus £29 million profit in 2019, which it attributed to a £44.2 million valuation charge against Kestrel plus £3.4 million of impairments.

Volumes from Kestrel were down 11% year-on-year while coal prices were hit by the closure of Indian ports mid-2020, leading to a 51% drop in income from the asset.

The company said output at Kestrel was expected to remain at "similar overall levels" in 2021.

Income from Largo Resources' Maracas Menchen vanadium mine in Brazil tumbled 81% yoy, while dividends from Canada's Labrador Iron Ore Royalty Corporation (LIORC) and FlowStream also retreated 39% yoy to £34 million.

Anglo Pacific CEO Julian Treger hailed last month's US$205 million acquisition of a cobalt stream from Vale's Voisey's Bay mine in Canada as a gamechanger for the company as it moved from steel-making commodities deeper into the battery metals space.

"Anglo Pacific is a very different business to what I reported on this time 12 months ago," he said.

The Voisey's Bay acquisition had "fundamentally repositioned our portfolio towards materials vital in providing cleaner energy for the future whilst ensuring that the group replaces its Kestrel revenue ahead of time".

London and Toronto-listed Anglo Pacific plans to elevate its base and battery metals exposure further this year and was "working on a number of opportunities," Treger added.

In December, Anglo announced it was offloading a 73% stake in LIORC in a move to free up cash for new acquisitions.

Anglo shares were flat on Wednesday at 136.2p, valuing the company at £289.4 million.